You’ve probably heard of Uruguay (though you might have confused it with Paraguay). Even if you have heard of it, what do you know about it?
Before my visit in February 2016, I didn’t know much about it at all. The little bits I did know, I confess to having confused with neighbouring countries:
- Remember the movie Alive, about the rugby team whose plane crashed in the Andes, and the extraordinary things they did to survive? Yah, I thought the team was from Argentina. Nope — Uruguay.
- You know the Rio de la Plata — the widest river in the world? I thought bordered Argentina and Brazil? Nope — not Brazil, Uruguay.
- It’s true that maté — the tea drunk traditionally from a gourd through a metal straw — is popular in Argentina. But in Uruguay it’s almost like a religion, with many Uruguayans walking around constantly with their hands full of their thermos of hot water and maté cup, so they’re never far from a sip.
I was completely charmed by Uruguay, its kind citizens (called, phonetically, “Ur-u-wash-oes”, fabulous food, stunning sites, serious environmental sustainability, and the care the Uruguayan government takes of its heritage. Believe it or not, but every year a whole village is invited to the capital, Montevideo, to learn about the country’s art and history (for free!). Tiny Uruguay made me very happy (and not just because I received a very romantic proposal….).
If you go, you’ll eat and drink very well. Some of the best meals I’ve ever had were at Jacinto and Estrecho in Montevideo. I’m a new convert to red wines, thanks to Uruguay’s tannats.
I now need to learn so much more about Uruguay. Maybe another visit soon?
Here’s my writing so far about this incredible country:
- For USA Today, The attractions and culture of Montevideo, Uruguay.
- A Wayward Weekend in Montevideo, Uruguay, for The Wayward Post, about how to spend a fab weekend focused on art, history, food, wine and architecture in Uruguay’s capital.
- Immerse yourself in culture at this Montevideo hotel, about Alma Historica Boutique Hotel, for The Wayward Post.
- Another feature on Alma Historica, for Luxury And Boutique Hotels.
- A feature on My Suites, a Montevideo hotel and wine bar, for Luxury And Boutique Hotels.
- Highlights of Uruguay, for Luxury And Boutique Hotels: where to go and what not to miss.
- A feature on Colonia Suite, for Luxury And Boutique Hotels, a hotel de charme full of art in Colonia del Sacramento.
- A feature on Posadita de la Plaza, for Luxury And Boutique Hotels, a small eclectic hotel with an engaging owner.
- For Boutique Travel, I included three of my favourite boutique hotels, including Alma Historica in Montevideo, in this roundup Top 10 favourite boutique hotels.
- And more to come ….