Uruguay – Daytours4u http://www.daytours4u.com/en Tours, activities and travel tips in South America Tue, 09 Oct 2018 13:59:02 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.8 96832869 Why is Uruguay the best LGBT destination in South America? http://www.daytours4u.com/en/uruguay4u/uruguay-the-best-lgbt-destination-south-america/ Tue, 04 Sep 2018 15:15:38 +0000 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/?p=12439 For more than 5 years Uruguay has been leading the lists of gay friendly destinations in Latin America and is one of the top 10 countries in the world that supports diversity with concrete actions. Two emblematic examples of these inclusive actions are equal marriage and the adoption law for homoparental families, which have had [...]

The post Why is Uruguay the best LGBT destination in South America? appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
For more than 5 years Uruguay has been leading the lists of gay friendly destinations in Latin America and is one of the top 10 countries in the world that supports diversity with concrete actions. Two emblematic examples of these inclusive actions are equal marriage and the adoption law for homoparental families, which have had a positive impact on all sectors of Uruguayan society, including tourism.

Uruguay celebrates Diversity Month every September as part of its commitment to the LGBT community / Photo: LGBT Chamber of Commerce and Business of Uruguay


Uruguay’s commitment to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBT +) community is strengthened every year, especially in September when Diversity Month is celebrated. On the occasion of this annual festival, we spoke with Sergio Miranda, director of Friendlymap Magazine and vice president of the LGBT Chamber of Commerce and Business of Uruguay, who explained to us why Uruguay continues to be the best LGBT + destination in South America.

1. Is Uruguay the best LGBT destination in South America? Why?

Uruguay has been labeled on more than one occasion as one of the most gay friendly destinations in Latin America and the world by various guides and leading magazines in the world of tourism. Uruguay has a legislative framework that is a worldwide example of respect and protection of rights: anti-discrimination laws, adoption law for homoparental families, assisted reproduction laws, concubinage and equal marriage laws. In addition, it is one of the few countries that receives the same amount of tourists as its entire population; figures that position it as a leader in tourism throughout the year.

2. What are the most gay friendly cities in Uruguay?

First, Montevideo. Then Colonia de Sacramento, Punta del Este and the spas La Pedrera, Punta del Diablo and Cabo Polonio in Rocha.

Uruguay es el mejor destino LGBT

In addition to Montevideo, the beaches of Rocha are considered gay friendly places in Uruguay / Photo: Daytours4u


3. What remains to be done so that Uruguay can continue to consolidate itself as the best LGBT destination in South America?

More and better services aimed specifically at this sector, more campaigns in the public eye and representation in international media, more participation in fairs and international thematic events on this sector, and furthering the training and professionalization of our human resources.

4. Why would you recommend that the LGBT community of the world come to Uruguay for tourism?

For all the above, for being a friendly country that receives visitors all year round, where they will feel respected, at ease and can enjoy their stay with all that the country has to offer.

5. What places in Montevideo and Punta del Este would you recommend the LGBT community visit on their next trip to Uruguay?

In Montevideo, in addition to visiting all its tourist attractions, the places where you will feel at ease are:

Splendido Petit Hotel & Hostel
Mercado Agrícola de Montevideo (MAM)
Restaurante Francis
La Cocina de Pedro, the most gay friendly restaurant in Uruguay
Cafetería che.co.ffee
Disco Il Tempo
Chains Club
Cain Disco
Sauna Horus
Sauna Toronto

In Punta del Este I’d recommend Undarius Hotel (gay men exclusive) and Restaurante Soho.


Uruguay is, without a doubt, a South American example of inclusion and respect for diversity. Live the best travel experiences in Uruguay with Daytours4u and enjoy your holidays in this beautiful country.

By: Keilma Rojas, web content editor at Daytours4u

The post Why is Uruguay the best LGBT destination in South America? appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
12439
5 popular festivals in Uruguay and nostalgia night “de yapa*” http://www.daytours4u.com/en/uruguay4u/popular-festivals-in-uruguay/ Tue, 21 Aug 2018 13:55:57 +0000 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/?p=12071 Although carnival in Uruguay is the quintessential festivals and during February there are celebrations and parades throughout the capital cities of the country, the opportunities to experience the national rural and folk traditions aren’t so abundant. However, we offer you here the list of some popular festivals in Uruguay, suitable both for the whole family and [...]

The post 5 popular festivals in Uruguay and nostalgia night “de yapa*” appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
Although carnival in Uruguay is the quintessential festivals and during February there are celebrations and parades throughout the capital cities of the country, the opportunities to experience the national rural and folk traditions aren’t so abundant. However, we offer you here the list of some popular festivals in Uruguay, suitable both for the whole family and for groups of young people, who remember the gaucho culture in the times of colonization and during the first decades of independent life, where guests will not only be able to enjoy themselves but also deepen their connection with the Creole roots of the country.

Remember that, unlike other Latin American countries with greater indigenous presence, in Uruguay the mythical ancestor is “the gaucho” and all the traditions that surround it. It’s not without reason that the Uruguayans say that we do not grant favors: we offer “a gaucho”.

The popular festivals in Uruguay are suitable to go as a family and for groups of young people / Source

1. Fiesta de la Patria Gaucha (Tacuarembó)

Located in the center of Uruguay, about 400 kilometers from Montevideo, the city of Tacuarembó every year becomes the core of the country’s gaucho traditions during the “Fiesta de la Patria Gaucha”, a celebration that takes place annually between March and April, prior to Tourism Week (Holy Week). Surrounding the city’s Laguna de Las Lavanderas, mud huts from the colonial period are created every year -they even hold competitions- and for six days there are bonfires, arenas, country activities, equestrian shows and concerts, some folkloric payadores and traditional dance performances, while others are a bit more modern, but always related to popular culture.

Whoever makes it here will have the opportunity to visit Eden Valley, a small town 23 kilometers from the city of Tacuarembó, where a picturesque train station and a museum of the tango singer and actor Carlos Gardel await, since the theory of most Uruguayans is that “the creole thrush” was born here.

When: The 2018 edition of the Fiesta de la Patria Gaucha will be the 32nd and will take place from Tuesday March 6 to Sunday, March 11. More information available on the website www.patriagaucha.com.uy.


2. Festival del Olimar (Treinta y Tres)

On the banks of its river, Olimar, the city of Treinta y Tres (33), at the beginning of each year hosts Tourism Week (Semana Santa) and about 30 thousand people in what is probably the largest folk festival in the country. The members of the famous folk duo Los Olimareños, José “Pepe” Guerra and Braulio López, natives of this city, are usually included in the program, together with other representatives of Uruguayan popular music, which is also combined in several days of stage performances with rock, pop, and cumbia modern national bands.

Furthermore, about 35 kilometers from the city of Treinta y Tres, travelling by route 8 and then by a picturesque ballast road, the Quebrada de los Cuervos offers visitors the opportunity to hike through the mountains, through a nature reserve where you can even can camp or rent cabins.

When: The 2018 edition of the Olimar Festival will be the 46th and will take place from Saturday, March 24 to Sunday, April 1 (to be confirmed). For more information, call the Intendencia de Treinta y Tres (+598 4452 2108) or send an email to prensa@treintaytres.gub.uy and turismo@treintaytres.gub.uy.

The Olimar Festival is probably the biggest folk event in the country

3. Beer week (Paysandú)

Although the name suggests an Oktoberfest in German style, don’t get confused. The name of this traditional festival in northern Uruguay refers to the Norteña brewery, which has worked for decades in this part of the country and is the main sponsor of this festival that takes place during Tourism Week (Semana Santa) on the shores of Uruguay River – the “paterno”, as the sanduceros call it – offers several days of shows in the amphitheater that is located there, with seating capacity for 20,000 people. During this time of year, there are also dozens of eclectic stands complementing the event, which are installed with selections ranging from Uruguayan artisanal and rural crafts to curious novelties.

The north of Uruguay also offers several thermal water spas: Guaviyú, Daymán, Arapey and Almirón -the latter’s distinguishing feature is that it has salt water. The best time to visit them is mid-season, which coincides exactly with the the dates during which this festival is celebrated.

When: The 2018 edition of Beer Week will be the 53rd and will take place from Saturday, March 24 to Sunday, April 1. More information available on the website www.paysandu.gub.uy/semana-de-la-cerveza.

Beer week is celebrated in an amphitheater that has capacity for 20 thousand people / Source

4. ExpoPrado (Montevideo)

In spring, for about 10 days, the Uruguayan agricultural community comes together in the Prado neighborhood in Montevideo, thanks to the International Exhibition of Livestock and International Agro Industrial and Commercial Exhibition (ExpoPrado), which combines exhibitions of all kinds and equestrian activities with stages and cultural performances.

Although the Prado neighborhood is not present in most tourism brochures in Montevideo, it has several other attractions near the ExpoPrado site, such as El Rosedal (located on Av. Delmira Agustini, Av. Buschental, at that time of the year it’s roses are all in bloom), the Botanical Garden (access door on the street April 19 1181) and the Museum of Fine Arts Juan Manuel Blanes (Millán Avenue 4015), which includes a small Japanese garden in its facilities.

When: The 2018 edition of ExpoPrado will be the 113th; its date had not yet been confirmed at the time of writing this article, although it is estimated that it will be, as every year, in the month of September. More information on their website www.expoprado.com.

The ExpoPadro is a fair that offers very varied activities, especially for children / Source

5. Heritage Weekend (the entire country)

Once a year, the doors of offices, companies and other non-traditional sites in Uruguay are opened so that the public can learn about its interior and history, while museums, plazas and other frequent transit sites organize special exhibitions and shows for visitors.

It was held for the first time in 1995 under the name “Heritage Day” and has since evolved to characterize a different theme every year, which in previous years has included various topics such as tango, Uruguayan architecture and national theater, and figures such as the national hero José Artigas, the plastic artist Joaquín Torres García and the historian Horacio Arredondo, among others.

When: The 2018 edition of Heritage Weekend will be the 24th; Its date had not yet been confirmed at the time of writing this article, although it is estimated that it will take place during the last four months of the year. More information is available on the website www.patrimoniouruguay.gub.uy.


6. Nostalgia Night (The entire country)

Unlike the previous festivals, Nostalgia Night has no connection to the rural traditions of the country nor is it pure city, but rather, as the name suggests, is related to the typical Uruguayan melancholy for times that have gone by, so we decided to include it in this list.

Its celebrated on the night of August 24 across the entire country – and on August 25 in Uruguay its a holiday under the Declaration of Independence so few people have to get up early – and the music playlist is focused on the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, although recently music from the 90s and early 2000s has also been added. The celebration was held for the first time on August 24, 1978, when Dj Pablo Lecueder, the owner CX-32 Radiomundo during that time, organized a party with oldies, which was the theme of his radio program “Old hits”, and over the years the event has been replicated in other dance clubs and venues.

Although the official name (” Nostalgia Night”) is coined by its creator, those who visit Uruguay at the end of August will have dozens of choices for parties with music from all decades. And on August 24 being young is not a requirement to let loose, in fact it’s the day of the year when adults of all ages come out to dance, some even dressed up in afro wigs and dressed in sparkles and sequins like “Saturday night fever”.

Nostalgia Night is celebrated on August 24 and is the day of the year in which more adults of all ages come out to dance / Source

If you wish to include original tours in your itinerary that allow you to experience authentic Uruguayan popular culture, don’t miss the Uruguay4u tours catalog, which includes the Estancia Tour that leaves from Montevideo as well as the Tuscan BBQ and Olive Experience from Punta del Este. Reservations are made online and include a team of experts available to offer the best travel tips for your destination.

*Yapa: South American adverbial phrase that means in addition.

Por: Carina Fossati, Uruguayan, journalist, and author of the blog Hills To Heels

The post 5 popular festivals in Uruguay and nostalgia night “de yapa*” appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
12071
Uruguay4u Review: Historic Quarter City Tour of Colonia del Sacramento http://www.daytours4u.com/en/uruguay4u/historic-quarter-city-tour-of-colonia/ Wed, 20 Jun 2018 19:57:52 +0000 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/?p=12378 During my stay in Uruguay, before taking the ferry to return to Buenos Aires, I had the opportunity to visit the small city of Colonia del Sacramento thanks to the City Tour through the Historic District. Colonia is known mainly for this center full of old buildings and is also noted on the UNESCO World [...]

The post Uruguay4u Review: Historic Quarter City Tour of Colonia del Sacramento appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
During my stay in Uruguay, before taking the ferry to return to Buenos Aires, I had the opportunity to visit the small city of Colonia del Sacramento thanks to the City Tour through the Historic District. Colonia is known mainly for this center full of old buildings and is also noted on the UNESCO World Heritage List. For both of these reasons, the city attracts many tourists every year.

Walking through the streets of Colonia transports you to the origin of one of the most charming cities in Uruguay


Historic Quarter City Tour of Colonia

The tour started at the door of the old walled city, at 3:00 p.m. The guide, Federico, very nice and passionate, began by explaining why this site was so important in history an especially to the Portuguese and the Spanish.

After sharing a short history of Colonia with us, he had us enter the walls of the city founded by the Portuguese in 1680, to show us the architectural differences between the Portuguese and Spanish buildings of each period of occupation in the city. He also told us some anecdotes and we entered the Calle de los Suspiros, where we saw an old Portuguese-style house restored with techniques and materials from that time. There is a local artist in this house who sells some of his works, mainly paintings.

The lighthouse of Colonia was built in 1857 and is one of the emblematic attractions of the city


Later on, we went to the square that was used in the colonial era for inspections and military parades. The ruins of the governor’s house that the Spaniards destroyed after the last capture of the city can also be found a few meters away. Next to the governor’s house, you can see the historic church of Colonia del Sacramento; very well maintained and restored.

Some of the tourists on the tour didn’t speak Spanish and the guide translated all the content of the tour in English. Because of this, they increased the length of the itinerary a little to have enough time for explanation in each place we visited. Also, Federico took the time to answer all our questions and gave us suggestions for restaurants and other interesting sites to visit in Colonia.

The Historic Quarter City Tour of Colonia del Sacramento is available in English and Spanish and the guide is always ready to answer all questions from tourists


Although the historical center of Cologne is quite small, this guided city walk allows you to discover much of the historical richness and to get a better understanding of the development of the city up until today, all thanks to the information provided by the guide. I highly recommend this tour if you’re passing through Colonia because it’s a really unique location in Uruguay.

By: Simon Ortiz

The post Uruguay4u Review: Historic Quarter City Tour of Colonia del Sacramento appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
12378
Your Essential Guide to Uruguay Carnival http://www.daytours4u.com/en/uruguay4u/your-essential-guide-to-uruguay-carnival/ Tue, 23 Jan 2018 12:00:04 +0000 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/?p=11141 From revelry in La Pedrera and festivals on the border to tablados and parades in the capital – we run you through the best of Uruguay Carnival.

The post Your Essential Guide to Uruguay Carnival appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
Uruguay is perhaps best well-known as the host of the longest carnival in world – there are a mammoth 40 days between the inaugural parade and the final celebrations. It is undoubtedly one of the best times of year to visit this tranquil country sandwiched between Argentina and Brazil, for this popular festival coincides with summer, making it the ideal opportunity to enjoy some revelry by night and the gorgeous beaches by day.

Uruguay Carnival is the longest in the world / Photo by Gentileza del Museo del Carnaval

It is a common mistake to assume that it is a single festival, when in fact, depending on which part of the country you are in, you can enjoy different carnivals with different characteristics – those in the cities bordering Brazil, for example, combine samba with local rhythms, while the festivities in Montevideo are comprised primarily of murgas and candombe music. Young people looking for a party atmosphere traditionally head to the department of Rocha, specifically La Pedrera, which puts on a Uruguayan version of the Full Moon Party where the main streets become populated by groups of friends adorned in fanciful disguises.

The date of carnival is international and it varies every year, established after the days of the Jewish Passover and the Christian Holy Week are set. The most important date, Resurrection Sunday, is the first Sunday after the first full moon of autumn (spring in the northern hemisphere) and then the date of carnival is set 40 days prior. In Uruguay, there are two public holidays for this celebration, always the Monday and Tuesday of the carnival long-weekend.

Humorists and choirs put on spectacular shows at the parades / Photo by Gentileza del Museo del Carnaval

CELEBRATIONS IN THE CAPITAL

In Montevideo, there are three types of celebration: El Desfile Inaugural del Carnaval (the Inaugural Carnival Parade), Desfile de Llamadas (The Parade of Calls), and the Tablados.

El Desfile Inaugural del Carnaval takes places down Avenida 18 de Julio in the Centro district, marking the opening of the festivities with performances by a number of bands, murga groups, comedians, parodists and other artists. In addition, the Carnival Figures, Las Llamadas and the Samba Schools that were chosen by the jury that year are those who participate in the parade. Until 2017 that place was occupied by the “queens” of the three categories, but at the moment, people of both sexes can be elected as representatives.

El Desfile de Llamadas, held since 1956, offers a spectacle of over 40 comparsas – groups of singers, musicians, and dancers. This traditionally takes places in the neighbourhoods of Sur and Palermo, commonly down the Carlos Gardel and Isla de Flores streets. Among the most awarded are Yambo Kenya -the champion of the official contest in 2017-, Cuareim 1080 -the winner in 2016-, Tronar de Tambores, La Gozadera, and Generación Lubola. The name, “llamadas” – translated as “calls” – derives from colonial times and can be traced back to an impromptu meeting in which some random comparsa members summoned the rest of the group to start using the same rhythmic language of the tamboril – a type of drum.

“Los corsos barriales” of Montevideo are other Carnival parades to take into account: every year there are 18, spread throughout the map of the city, which provide the traveler with the ideal excuse to know a neighborhood away from the tourist circuit and join to this authentic party.

The Tablados are not parades but outdoor performances. They are usually put on across most neighbourhoods and the programming varies every night, given that they host different groups of artists divided into five categories: comparsas, murgas, comedians, parodists, and revistas. If there is anything in particular that you want to see while you’re in town, keep checking the schedule regularly. The best and most complete tablados take place in Teatro Verano, an open-air theatre in the Parque Rodó neighbourhood where the jury of the official carnival shows is based.

The colourful comparsas fill the Montevideo air with raucous drum rhythms / Image Source

BORDER RHYTHMS

The departments of Artigas, Rivera, and Cerro Largo border with Brazil, and with strong influences from this northern neighbour, they put on combined celebrations featuring samba, axé – a type of Afro-Brazilian music – and other rhythms of the region.

El de Melo, the capital of Cerro Largo, is perhaps the most “show business” since it invites recognised Uruguayan and Argentinian vedettes. Elsewhere, in the city of Artigas, the celebrations are inspired by the Rio de Janeiro carnival and are probably the most professional, with four samba schools rehearsing throughout the year for the performances in February: Barrio Rampla, Emperadores de la Zona Sur, Imperio del Ayuí and Académicos. Each school brings together approximately one thousand artists for their parades down Avenida Lecueder, each one lasting around one hour apiece.

Carnaval de Rivera counts on a strong mix of cultures, mixing candombe and murga from the south with samba hailing from the north. For over a decade, the parades here have been making their way down Avenida Sarandí, replete with comparsas, samba schools from Rivera and Livramento, Carnival Queens and King Momo. The parades always close with a show in a public arena located at the end of the street, in front of the main square.

The Carnival of Artigas has a strong influence from Brazil / Photo by Carina Fossati

PARTY ON THE COAST

There is no organisation behind it, but Carnaval de la Pedrera is a phenomenon that is self-generated by the fame of previous years and social media buzz – it is a favourite for young people who want to party until after sunrise and those who don’t fancy taking in parades. Instead, groups of friends dress up themselves, wear spontaneous disguises, and go out into the main street to revel the days and nights away.

Such is the reputation of this fiesta that a couple of years ago, the mayor of the region took to the radio to ask for people to stop coming, such was the overcrowded state of the city. In recent times however, authorities have increased security operations and improved cleaning, public restrooms, and other details to ensure the good atmosphere remains.

TO TAKE INTO ACCOUNT

This 2018 in Uruguay the strict days of carnival (working holidays) are Saturday 10th, Sunday 11th, Monday 12th and Tuesday 13th February, days in which it is celebrated in most departments. However, the carnival’s inaugural parade, down Avenida 18 de Julio, will be on Thursday, January 25th; The Call Parade will be Thursday 8th and Friday 9th February; and the final ceremony of the Official Carnival Contest, on Thursday, March 15th.

If you want to enjoy the carnivals on the border, it is very important to book accommodation in advance, since February is the time when these places receive the most visitors and the hotel industry is often overwhelmed. On the Atlantic Coast, hotels tend to fill up quickly and raise the price of rooms between the Saturday and Tuesday of Carnival.

With the exception of the carnival in La Pedrera, all festivities and parades in the country that take place on public streets are usually fenced off and have varying access depending on the price of your ticket. The Tablados and Teatro Verano likewise have different ticket prices according to the day and the performances on show.

Throughout the last few years, groups of murgas and other artistic styles have been growing in the interior of the country. For this reason, many departmental governments have managed to attract performers from the capital, and so today it is possible to enjoy some of these shows outside of Montevideo during carnival.

10 years ago, a Carnival Museum opened at Rambla 25 de Agosto de 1825 (Ciudad Vieja (Old Town), telephone +598 2915 0807, open from 11am to 5pm), displaying costumes, scenery, and many other historical artifacts. The museum is also a next door to Mercado del Puerto, an old building where several ‘parrilladas’ (barbeque restaurants) offer their spaces as a meeting place for travellers and locals who fancy sampling some Uruguayan delicacies.

. . .

Do not miss the various manifestations of Uruguay Carnival, and, if you’re looking for other things to do during these dates or indeed at any time of the year, be sure to contact us at Uruguay4u. We offer the best tours and activities in Montevideo, Punta del Este, Colonia, and more.

By: Carina Fossati, journalist and author of the blog Hills to Heels

The post Your Essential Guide to Uruguay Carnival appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
11141
Celebrating New Year’s Eve in Uruguay http://www.daytours4u.com/en/uruguay4u/celebrating-new-years-eve-uruguay/ Tue, 26 Dec 2017 19:29:49 +0000 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/?p=11967 The period that begins with Christmas and goes until to the feast of the Three Wise Men (January 6) is one of the best times to visit Uruguay, both because of the weather and the variety of parties that take place, as well as because of the good spirit you will find in my compatriots, [...]

The post Celebrating New Year’s Eve in Uruguay appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
The period that begins with Christmas and goes until to the feast of the Three Wise Men (January 6) is one of the best times to visit Uruguay, both because of the weather and the variety of parties that take place, as well as because of the good spirit you will find in my compatriots, most of them already beginning their summer holidays. The bad news is that as many foreigners already know, the demand is high for hotels, inns, and apartments for rent during these dates, which Brazilian neighbors have baptized as “réveillon“, is high. Because of this, prices tend to be higher during those weeks than the rest of the summer. If you are one of the lucky ones who will end the year while visiting our country, understanding several aspects of the local culture will be useful for you to enjoy your trip to the fullest.

The New Year in Uruguay coincides with the summer, so take advantage of enjoying those days in front of the sea / Source

WHAT DO THE URUGUAYANS EAT?

Because the majority of Uruguayans are descended from European immigrants -especially from Spain and Italy, but also from the United Kingdom, France and Germany, among others- the foods that make up the typical Christmas and New Year’s menu are usually more appropriate for the cold of the northern hemisphere than for the average 30 degree weather in these latitudes.

The pork and roast lamb are two of the most traditional components on the menu. A small dish with cooked lentils, according to the superstitious people, will attract prosperity and that there will be plenty of food on the table during the year to come. The chicken, on the other hand, would be contraindicated, since it predicts that the year will start out “going backwards”, as this animal does on some occasions. Fruit cake, English pudding, nougat and polished fruits complete the list of typical foods on this date, but are accompanied by several kilos of ice cream, among which the classic flavor of dulce de leche is a must.

Nougat is one of the favorite desserts of Uruguayans for New Year’s dinner / Source

Keep in mind if you are going to have dinner on the 31st in a restaurant in Uruguay, as in Argentina and part of Spain, it is customary to start eating at 9.30 pm or even later. In families and groups of Uruguayan friends, it often happens that when the toast at midnight arrives… they haven’t even eaten dessert yet!


FOR THE SUPERSTITIOUS

Other local traditions, which probably coincide with several Latin American and/or European countries, are:

  • Eating 12 grapes (at midnight on the 31st, one per bell). It is supposed to attract good luck.
  • Filling a bucket or glass of water and throwing it back in the doorway of your house. The belief is that doing it will remove the bad energies of the home and ensure the beginning of the year clean of bad vibrations.
  • Going out with a suitcase, at midnight, and walking around the block. They say that this action will ensure at least one trip in 2018.

COLORS IN THE SKY

Although they have their detractions, for the Uruguayans fireworks are synonymous with Christmas Eve and New Years, so the night sky during the second half of December becomes multicolored. In Montevideo, the Ramblas del Centro, Parque Rodó and Pocitos, and in Punta del Este in the area of the Port, are the places where the most lights compete in color, duration and form during the change of year. After midnight, the area of the Port has been for several years the place where the largest number of people in the spa, of all ages and socioeconomic levels, is concentrated. If you want to start the first day of the year in a more exclusive place, we recommend one of the many VIP parties that will be held in Punta del Este and its surroundings.

If you want to start the year in an exclusive place, do not miss the VIP parties in Punta del Este / Source: Flurmagazine

WATCHING THE SUNRISE

We have around 600 kilometers of beach along Rio de la Plata and the Atlantic Ocean, where you can enjoy the spectacle of the first dawn of the new year, which occurs at about five thirty in the morning. But keep in mind that in Montevideo, Punta del Este, the spas of Rocha and other parts of the country you will find several parties where the sunrise is not the end, but the peak of the celebration.

Enjoy the holidays and the austral summer with the best tours in Uruguay!

By: Carina Fossati, Uruguayan, journalist and author of travel blog Hills To Heels

The post Celebrating New Year’s Eve in Uruguay appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
11967
Where to Eat in Punta del Este: An Insider’s Guide to Dining Out http://www.daytours4u.com/en/uruguay4u/where-to-eat-in-punta-del-este/ Fri, 15 Dec 2017 15:56:42 +0000 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/?p=11934 On the Uruguayan coasts the gastronomy occupies a place almost as important as the beaches: there are located two of the national undertakings that integrate the prestigious ranking “Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants”, dozens of choices for where to enjoy the Uruguayan seafood, varied options to try (and fall in love) with the chivito, without [...]

The post Where to Eat in Punta del Este: An Insider’s Guide to Dining Out appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
On the Uruguayan coasts the gastronomy occupies a place almost as important as the beaches: there are located two of the national undertakings that integrate the prestigious ranking “Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants”, dozens of choices for where to enjoy the Uruguayan seafood, varied options to try (and fall in love) with the chivito, without missing the pizzas and snacks, paired with wines -the tannat is the national classic-, Uruguayan craft beers and summer cocktails.

In summer (from December to February) the options are multiplied with proposals “golondrinas” that only open for the season, but most of the places we have decided to recommend here are open all year, so that you can enjoy them during whichever month you choose to visit.


IN THE PENINSULA

Buenos AiresLo de Tere is located in the Port designed for demanding palates and pockets / Photo courtesy of Lo de Tere

Uruguay is not left out of the international trend of craft beers and Capi Bar (Calle 27 between Av. Gorlero and calle 24, Tel. 4243 8103) has its own production, under the Capitan Beer label, added to other national variants such as Davok, Volcánica and Cabesas. The gastronomic options to combine them include pizzas, salads, hamburgers, chivitos, calamari, ceviche and fish. Located across the street, the Bigote Food Truck Garage (27th Street between Gorlero Ave. and 24th Street) offers a covered food patio with food trucks, where you can choose between pizzas -in the traditional form or in cones-, chivitos, hamburgers, sandwiches , salads and other fast food selections. Both establishments frequently include live music. Also a casual and moderately priced option is Olivia Restó (Calle 21 and Rambla Artigas, Tel. +598 4244 5121), located half a block from the Port: from its terrace you can have lunch or dinner overlooking the bay.

More demanding palates and pockets will find in the Port to Lo de Tere (Rambla Artigas (Mansa) between streets 19 and 21, Tel. +598 4244 0492), with an author’s menu under the charge of the chef María Elena Marfetán, who combines products of season, the best Uruguayan meats and a carefully selected fish and seafood. There you can eat a la carte, or select a menu of five, six or seven courses. Another favorite option among local gourmets is Cuatro Mares “Four Seas” (Calle Capitán Miranda, 2 de Febrero Street, Tel. +598 4244 8916), located very close to Punta del Este’s lighthouse. As the name suggests, the specialty is fish and seafood; and also offers tapas, ideal for those who want to try a variety of flavors accompanied by a caipirinha or glass of wine.


BOULEVARD GOURMET

Chivipizza is the youthful, economic and relaxed option of Boulevard Gourmet / Source

On the corner of Roosevelt and Pedragosa Sierra avenues, near the shopping center Punta Shopping, a circuit known as Boulevard Gourmet was born due to the concentrated quantity and variety of gastronomic proposals; Every so often, gastronomic fairs take place in which restaurants and cafes open stands on the streets with lower prices: check with your hotel or Google to find out when the next one will take place!

The restaurant La Bourgogne (Av. Pedragosa Sierra and Av. Del Mar, Tel. 4248 2007) is located in this area, by French chef Jean Paul Bondoux, and has the privilege of being part of the prestigious “Latin America’s 50 Best” ranking. It is not suitable for all budgets, but it ensures a unique experience.

On the other side of the island, economic and relaxed is Chivipizza (Pedragosa Sierra, San Ciro, Tel. +598 4247 7777), ideal for trying Uruguayan chivito accompanied by fresh drinks such as caipirinhas, daikiris or frozen mojitos.

If your wish is to enjoy an afternoon snack or a good coffee after the beach, you will not be disappointed by the Felix Caffè (Pedragosa Sierra and Av. Del Mar, Tel. +598 4248 3125). There complete tea for two includes scones, hot sandwiches, cakes, tartlets and cakes, all prepared on sites. These delights can be enjoyed inside the, in their garden – they offer warm blankets for cool evenings – and they also offer the food to-go. If your plan is a tea-dinner, there are also sandwiches, omelets, cocktails, wines and sparkling wines.


IN MALDONADO

Chef Fernando Trocca is the creator of the exquisite menu at La Cantina del Vigía / Source

Punta del Este has a reputation for high prices and among the regular vacationers it is common to travel on several evenings to the city of Maldonado to enjoy a more economical menu. In the last decade there have been options for great gastronomic quality that make the visit worthy beyond just the pricing, such as La Cantina del Vigía (Zelmar Michelini 744 Tel. +598 4226 8075), located in front of the homonymous square of late eighteenth century. Owned by Agustín Benítez and Federico Desseno -the latter is also the creator of the restaurant “Marismo” in José Ignacio-, and with a menu designed by chef Fernando Trocca, La Cantina del Vigía has two wood-fired ovens from which “delights of the sea and the countryside” come out of. Even the American media chef Anthony Bourdain visited here and recommended it on his television show!

Another recommendation, located a few steps away, is the Segundo Almacen del Caballito (Zelmar Michelini 819, Rafael Pérez del Puerto, Tel +598 4227 2108). There you can enjoy a barbecue, potato omelet, mussels, calamari, horderves, salads and milanesas: in the Rio de la Plata we are fanatics of Milanesas and tend to integrate them into the weekly menu of most Uruguayans!

In Maldonado it is also worth visiting Macachín (Santa Teresa 619 bis Tel. +598 94 102 776), a restaurant that emphasizes the creative combination of local ingredients. Examples? Camembert cheese injected with homemade liquor guava (native fruit of Uruguay), gizzards with champagne sautéed in olive oil, corvina ceviche with yellow arazá or kidneys cooked in tannat over a bed of potatoes.


OVER THE BRIDGE

The Parador La Huella is one of the must-see spots in José Ignacio, located right in front of the sea / Source

After crossing the undulating bridge of the Maldonado stream, which leads to La Barra, the main street (route 10) will tempt you with multiple proposals, but you will have to leave a few blocks if you want to discover the secrets of the locals. One of them is Elmo (Calle Los Bonitos, El Cinto, Manantiales, Tel. +598 94 069 111), a relaxed place where wood predominates and at night it receives the diner with soft lighting, soft music and a clay oven. from which come homemade pizzas and pastas; Elmo also stands out in seafood dishes, and has in the dessert menu one of the best sweet milk volcanoes that can be tasted in Uruguay.

Further east, at La Juanita spa, Juana Cocina Bar (Atalaya street, Hector Soria square, José Ignacio, Tel. +598 4486 2639) is an unpretentious homestyle-restaurant offering pizzas and pastas baked in clay ovens, local wines or Uruguayan craft beers. It is also an ideal place to try dessert pancakes with dulce de leche, one of the most traditional in the country.

And, if Punta del Este is considered a top resort, the area of José Ignacio would be “the top of the top”; There, the not-to-be-missed is the La Huella Parador (Calle de Los Cisnes, Playa Brava, Tel. 4486 2279) and do not be fooled by the rustic decoration of the beach hostel or the casual look of its regulars: the restaurant owned by gastronomic entrepreneur Martín Pittaluga makes the ranking “Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants” and is the favorite of local and international celebrities. It is not cheap but it offers great value for money, the only drawback is that it is recommended to reserve a table because if not there are usually long waits.


EN GARZÓN

Bodega Garzón has a haute cuisine restaurant and offers walks and tastings through the vineyard / Source

This small town about 30 minutes from the Peninsula became a gourmet spot since Argentine chef Francis Mallman opened the boutique hotel-restaurant Garzón, (Costa Jose Ignacio Street, La Capilla Street, Tel. +598 4410 2811). The prices are extremely high but for those who have the means, it is worthwhile to experience at least once in a lifetime. For guests the menu is all inclusive: breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner. Another cheaper option for those who want to visit the town without feeling it in their pockets is the cafeteria, rotisserie and Panadería de la Mama (Costa Jose Ignacio Street and La Cantera, across from the main square) which offers homemade breads, sandwiches, cakes, salads and other meals along the way.

On the outskirts of the town is the vineyard and Bodega Garzón, owned by Argentine magnate Alejandro Bulgheroni, which includes a top cuisine restaurant and also offers vineyard and olive grove tours, tastings, picnics in the countryside and even hot air balloon rides.

Click here to see the best tours and activities in Punta del Este

. . .

By: Carina Fossati, Uruguayan, journalist and author of the blog Hills To Heels

The post Where to Eat in Punta del Este: An Insider’s Guide to Dining Out appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
11934
10 recommendations for traveling to Punta del Este http://www.daytours4u.com/en/daytours4u/10-recommendations-traveling-punta-del-este/ Tue, 14 Nov 2017 21:09:21 +0000 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/?p=11896 While it is true that the most exciting thing about travel is to experience each place on your own, there are always certain things that you wish you had known before, especially when saving time and money. So if you plan to travel to the Uruguayan coast this summer and want to not only sunbathe [...]

The post 10 recommendations for traveling to Punta del Este appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
While it is true that the most exciting thing about travel is to experience each place on your own, there are always certain things that you wish you had known before, especially when saving time and money. So if you plan to travel to the Uruguayan coast this summer and want to not only sunbathe but also have an amazing experience, here are 10 recommendations for traveling to Punta del Este:

1. The prices are about the same … high

prices Punta del Este

Source: Clarín

Everything tends to be quite expensive, although it is true that some things are more expensive than others and that in high season even the hostels have prices of 3 star hotels, but in regards to food and fun, the price range is fairly consistent, meaning that it does not matter if you eat chivito and beer in a pizza place or if you go to dinner at a restaurant on Avenida Gorlero, a dinner with drinks will be around 850UY per person. Of course, there are different levels.

2. It is very safe

safety in Punta del Este

Source: Uruguay4u

You can walk around safely, with your camera, smartphone, jewelry; the security in Punta del Este makes it a delight to walk alone or accompanied at any time of the night or day, along the beach or through its avenues. It doesn’t matter if you travel during off-season and there isn’t a soul in the streets, or if it’s mid-summer and booming, it’s the perfect place to travel worry-free.

3. Fresh fish and seafood

seafood in Punta del Este

Fuente: Uruguay4u

If you feel like making a special dinner during your vacation, the port of Punta del Este offers a variety of seafood and fresh fish to take home. If cooking isn’t an option for you, the Arctic restaurant also located in the port, has a buffet per kilo of dishes made with fresh fish and seafood and a varied menu including paella and breaded fish fillets, all at a great price.

Book navigation tours in Punta del Este

4. The party goes until the early hours … of the next morning

Nightlife in Punta del Este

Source: Flurmagazine

Although the people from the Rio de la Plata are characterized by dining and partying late, Punta del Este takes this to a whole other level. After strenuous afternoons in the sun that go until 8pm, it is normal for the schedule to run as follows: return to your accommodation to rest, go out to dinner at 10-11pm, have the “previa” (pregame) in a bar until 4am and just then, you start going out to nightclubs. Unless you want to be the first person to arrive in the nightclub.

5. Summer nights can become chilly

recomendaciones para viajar a Punta del Este

Source: Uruguay4u

The Uruguayan coast isn’t exactly warm and tropical. The wind is constant and the strong currents can take anybody off guard. The Caribbean neighbors would probably find the nights in Punta (not to mention the sea water) cold and windy, whereas others with less resistance to the heat will find it the ideal climate to rest without suffering. Regardless, it does not matter if you are resistant to the cold or not, the strong wind of the night can catch you by surprise, so we recommend that you bring warm clothes, pants, leggings or something to cover your neck to avoid a cold that could affect your holidays.

6. Perfect for surfers

recomendaciones para viajar a Punta del Este

Fuente: Uruguay4u

It doesn’t matter if you are an expert surfer or if you just want to try out some classes during your vacation, take advantage of the waves offered by the beaches in Punta del Este to test your limits and enjoy the adrenaline that this entertaining sport offers. On all of its beaches you will find surf schools for all levels, the most well known is the Escuela de Surf de los Dedos because of its location and convenience; they offer classes for all ages. All you need is a desire to learn!

7. Life is torn between Playa Mansa and Playa Brava

Playa Brava Punta del Este

Fuente: Uruguay4u

The Uruguayan coast has some beautiful beaches to enjoy, and Punta del Este is surrounded by expansive beaches made of fine sand, but the most well known for tourists who stay in the city are these two: La Mansa, bathed by the waters of Rio de La Plata, allows you to witness beautiful sunsets and enjoy quiet beach days and is ideal for children. La Brava (The Brave), as the name implies, is perfect for those who prefer ocean waves. You have to be careful and follow the safety instructions because sometimes the ocean is very choppy, but it is not an impediment to enjoy the sun and the beach climate that are experienced in summer.

8. Taxis or remises and no Uber

If you find yourself walking for too long and want to go home, you should look for the nearest taxi stop to your location and wait there for an available vehicle to arrive. Taxis in the streets do not stop at the signal of passers-by like in other cities. They do door-to-door services reserved by phone or only drive passengers who come to the taxi stations. Every 3 blocks or so, in the center of the city, you will find taxi stands … there are not many other alternatives since Uber is not available in Punta del Este. So if you decide to walk, keep the distance in mind because if you get tired in the middle, it will be difficult to find someone to come to the rescue.

9. Tax free and VAT refund for tourists.

Tax Refund Uruguay

It applies to all of Uruguay, but it is important to know to help with the rate of spending in Punta del Este. One way to save a little money, is paying with a credit or debit card for any purchase of clothes, food, or entertainment. The commercial premises automatically subtract 22% of the VAT value from the invoice. Furthermore, the hotel services do not charge VAT and as if that were not enough, you can also receive a 10.5% refund for purchases at the sites attached to the Tax Free plan. To access this benefit, you need to request the Tax Free invoice from the local and make the refund process request to any credit card at the Carrasco Airport or the port of Buquebus (the procedure is quite agile). The only exception are the restaurants and bars in the port, which, being in a free zone, do not charge taxes.

10. Not Everything is beach!

Arboretum Lussich

It is its main attraction, but if you want to do something involving nature, from Punta del Este you can easily access places like Arboretum Lussich, a forest park located just 15 kms from Punta del Este towards Punta Ballenas. It’s comprised of more than 192 hectares of land, several species of native and imported trees and is an ideal place for bird watching and ecological walks. Definitely worth the trip! You can also visit the Parque de las Esculturas Pablo Atchugarry, or enjoy cultural events such as the José Ignacio Film Festival.

Read also: Top 12 Things to do in Punta Del Este or book here tours and activities in Punta del Este

The post 10 recommendations for traveling to Punta del Este appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
11896
Montevideo Guide: a comprehensive neighborhood guide – PART 2 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/daytours4u/montevideo-guide-comprehensive-neighborhood-guide-part-2/ Wed, 18 Oct 2017 21:20:33 +0000 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/?p=11820 On the first chapter of our Montevideo Guide, we described the best attractions and places to visit in the Old City, Aguada and Parque Batlle and Parque Rodó. Follow this insider recommendations to find out more about Pocitos, Carrasco and other trending neighborhoods to arrange your travel itinerary with unique and interesting sightseeing journeys in [...]

The post Montevideo Guide: a comprehensive neighborhood guide – PART 2 appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
On the first chapter of our Montevideo Guide, we described the best attractions and places to visit in the Old City, Aguada and Parque Batlle and Parque Rodó. Follow this insider recommendations to find out more about Pocitos, Carrasco and other trending neighborhoods to arrange your travel itinerary with unique and interesting sightseeing journeys in Montevideo.

4 – Pocitos / Punta Carretas

Pocitos

Photo: Leonardo Correa

This zone has the highest concentration of inhabitants and therefore each square meter is more expensive, especially within the blocks near the beach. On the weekends the social life of the neighborhood seems to be concentrated along its main boulevard, from young people who get together to drink mate – an infusion similar to the tea very typical of the region- to families who walk their babies in strollers, and the active individuals who use this space to run or ride bicycles. For being the safest and most active places at night –Ciudad Vieja and Centro are hectic during the day but empty at dusk- it’s the area most recommended to stay, and also contains interesting restaurants and bars to wrap up the day.

Read here Where to eat in Montevideo

While walking on the coast it’s worth it to stop at  la Plaza Gomensoro, a picturesque space with a gazebo alongside the beach, and a few blocks notice the Pittamiglio Palace “Pittamiglio Palace” (Rambla Gandhi 633), a building that almost goes unnoticed among the others, despite having the bow of ship with the Victory of Samothrace at the front. It was home of the wealthy architect Humberto Pittamiglio (1887-1966), who is said to have been an alchemist. It is worth taking a guided tour to surprise yourself with rooms full of nooks, doors, and stairs that lead nowhere, and alchemical symbols everywhere; another way to experience it is to attend a play inside.

In these neighborhoods, there are also the two biggest shopping centers in the city: Montevideo Shopping and Punta Carretas Shopping. The second, located on Ellauri 350 and inaugurated in 1994, was previously a prison, famous for some of its prison breaks- which gave rise to films – and for having housed several political prisoners before and during the last Uruguayan dictatorship (1973-1985).

Montevideo Shopping has the title of being the first mall of the city (it was inaugurated in 1985) and it is located on the Avenue Luis Alberto de Herrera, also home to the complex offices World Trade Center, restaurants, bars and Lotus, the most VIP nightclub of Montevideo. In addition, walking a few blocks from Montevideo Shopping towards the coast you will arrive at the MONTEVIDEO sign, a place popular among tourists to take pictures, as it offers a unique view of Pocitos beach.

5 – Malvín / Punta Gorda / CarrascoSofitel Carrasco

The biggest residential area of the city apart from La Rambla de Malvin which today has acquired a profile similar to that of Pocitos for its buildings – is not a place commonly recommended to travelers but has its attractions: for something a large part of the country’s wealthiest people chooses to live here. How about renting a bike to check it out?

On the Rambla of Malvin at Rimac Street, you will find Villa Yerua, former property of the Argentinean Francisco Maschio, a horse trainer, who received Carlos Gardel as a guest on several occasions. This year (2017) it reopened as a Turf and Tango Museum, held by the Uruguayan Association of Racehorse Owners (see schedules below), and there is a  statue of Carlos Gardel by the door where visitors can take pictures.

Continuing east along the Rambla you will find the beautiful Plaza De La Armada “Navy Square”, baptized by the locals as Plaza Virgilio, the meeting point of local neighbors and an ideal place to get a panoramic view of the coast of Montevideo.

Continuing further down the Rambla towards the east you will find the Casino Carrasco Hotel, a giant building of French style inaugurated in 1921, which since 2013 is now owned by French chain Sofitel. Staying here is not suitable for all budgets, but anyone can enter to admire the architecture and decoration, view some of the art exhibits that are usually on display, and perhaps then try their luck (in moderation) in the casino.

On the way out you will see the main commercial zone of the neighborhood, Arocena avenue, and parallel to it a picturesque street of old houses now transformed into stores: Rostand Avenue. You might have the luck that your visit happens to coincide with “Paseo Rostand”, an event that is held several times a year by placing Food trucks and musical shows along the sidewalks.

MONTEVIDEO USEFUL INFO

When to go. The middle season (March and April – September to December) are the best times of the year to visit. In summer the city is a bit too hot, but also a good option if you want to combine the visit with a couple of days at the beach towards the east. During January you will find the city rather empty, therefore many shops and restaurants are closed, as it is the favorite month of the locals for their holidays. February is the perfect month to enjoy multiple carnival shows.

Transportation. Of the public transport buses, you can use 121 to move from Ciudad Vieja / Centro to Pocitos and Punta Carretas, and 104 covers this route but also serves to reach Malvin, Punta Gorda, and Carrasco. It can be purchased in cash at the time of the trip, but for long stays, the magnetic transport card is advisable because it offers discounts. If this is going to be your main means of transport, the “Comor Ir” app will help you to know what collective to take according to its origin and destination. Other apps related to transport available in the city are Easy, Uber and CabyFy.

Bus Turístico / Tourist Bus  “Descubri Montevideo”. This bus stops at most of the main points of interest in the city – except for Malvín, Punta Gorda and Carrasco – and the user must acquire a valid pass allowing them to get on and off as many times as they want, for one day (637 pesos, just over 20 dollars ) or two days (980 pesos, a little more than 30 dollars). It runs between 9.30 and 18.30 on weekends, and from 10 to 17.45 during the week. Book here Montevideo hop on hop off bus

Walking tour. To walk around la Ciudad Vieja this guided tour is a good option because it does not require a prior reservation or fixed rate – the traveler leaves a tip at the end of the tour. There are guides available in Spanish, Portuguese and English. Some free walking tours leave Plaza Independencia, from Monday to Friday in the mornings, but you can also book here a city tour in Montevideo here.

Mercado Del Puerto / Port Market. Located at the corner of  Piedras 237 and Pérez Castellano has 14 restaurants and also includes various craft stalls. Inside the building, only lunch is available (the most recommended option) but the barbecues on the outside are also open at night.

Teatro Solis / Solis Theater. Located on Buenos Aires Street, it offers guided tours Tuesday and Thursday at 4:00 p.m.; Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays at 11, 12 and 16 hours, and Saturdays at 11, 12, 13 and 16 hours. The cost is 90 pesos (except on Wednesdays tours are free), and there are guides available in English, Portuguese and French. Our recommendation is to know the interior of the theater by attending a work: see the billboard at www.teatrosolis.org.uy

Mirador Panorámico / Panoramic View. Located at the corner of 18 de Julio and Ejido, the viewpoint the of the Intendencia of Montevideo is open to the public the seven days of the week, from 10 to 16 hours. It is free and utilizes a glass elevator offering a view of the exterior.

Palacio Legislativo / Legislative Palace. Entering through the door at Av. General Flores guided tours are available, from Monday to Friday, from 10.30 to 15 hours, in Spanish, English, and Portuguese, with a cost for foreign tourists of $ 3.

Complejo Torre de las Comunicaciones / Complex Communications Tower. Located at the corner of Paraguay 2097 and Guatemala, free guided tours are available with access to the viewpoint on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, at 15.30, 16, 16.30, and 17 hours, and Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10.30, 11, 11.30, and 12 hours. It is not necessary to sign up beforehand; it’s sufficient to arrive a few minutes early at the reception in the Joaquin Torres Garcia building.

Museo de Bellas Artes Juan Manuel Blanes / Museum of Fine Arts Juan Manuel Blanes. Located at Millán 1415 and the corner of Pierre Fossey, open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 12 to 17.45 hours. Free entry.

Jardín Botánico / Botanical Garden. Botanical Garden / Botanical Garden. Main entrance located at Avenida 19 De Abril 1181 and the corner of Valdense, open seven days a week from 7.30 am to 5.30 pm. Free entry.

Estadio Centenario y Museo del Fútbol /Centenario Stadium and Football Museum. Located on the premises of Parque Batlle/Park Batlle (Av. Ricaldoni s/n), entry is only permitted during sporting events or concerts. Check to see if your visit coincides with one! The Museo Del Futbol/ Football Museum (open from Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., entrance fee) is available at the stadium, but in addition, more football fans can purchase a tour that will take them to the stadium with entries and transportation included. Book here a football experience in Montevideo.

Museo Nacional de Artes Visuales / National Museum of Visual Arts. Located in Parque Rodó (at the corner of Julio Herrera y Reissig and Tomás Garibaldi) is open  Tuesday through Sunday, from 14 to 19. Free admission.

Centro Cultural y Museo Castillo Pittamiglio / Cultural Center and Castle Pittamiglio Museum. Along Punta Carretas, almost arriving at the corner of 21 de Septiembre, this oddly shaped house (has the prow of a ship with the Victory of Samothrace on the outside) is open to the public with guided tours at 5 pm, Tuesday through Sundays. There are also plays for children and adults, most created for the visitor to walk through the installations as they change the scenes. Check which shows are currently on display at their website www.castillopittamiglio.org

Villa Yeruá. Located in Rambla de Malvín at the corner of Rimac, EL Museo Del Tango y Turf  “The Tango and the Turf Museum’ open to the public from Tuesday to Saturdays, from 12 to 17 hours.

*Read the first chapter of our Montevideo Guide

Book a Sightseeing Tour in Montevideo with Uruguay4u

By Carina Fossati, Journalist specialised in travelling and author of the blog Hills to Hells
Translated to English by Anna Englund

The post Montevideo Guide: a comprehensive neighborhood guide – PART 2 appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
11820
Montevideo Guide: a comprehensive neighborhood guide – PART 1 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/daytours4u/montevideo-guide-comprehensive-neighborhood-guide-part-1/ Tue, 17 Oct 2017 09:00:30 +0000 http://www.daytours4u.com/en/?p=11812 Nightlife in Montevideo is much more than the Mercado del Puerto, the Ciudad Vieja and the Rambla de Pocitos. The capital of Uruguay has many more attractions than those listed in the traditional tourist guides, and neighborhoods outside the main circuits that are worth the visit. In this Montevideo guide, we provide you with a [...]

The post Montevideo Guide: a comprehensive neighborhood guide – PART 1 appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
Nightlife in Montevideo is much more than the Mercado del Puerto, the Ciudad Vieja and the Rambla de Pocitos. The capital of Uruguay has many more attractions than those listed in the traditional tourist guides, and neighborhoods outside the main circuits that are worth the visit. In this Montevideo guide, we provide you with a summary, prepared by a local and separated by areas, that combines the traditional with the “off the beaten path” so that you can get the most out of your visit.

1 – Ciudad Vieja/Centro “Old City/Center”

Photo: Enrique Pérez

A good site to start the tour is the Plaza Independencia “Independence Plaza”, in the center of which you will see the monument dedicated to Artigas – our national hero – and surrounding it the Executive Branch – the seat of the country’s president – Palacio  Salvo  an ex hotel which is now an apartment building of interesting architecture, the five-star hotel Radisson Victoria Plaza, and diagonally across from it, the Teatro Solís, one of the oldest in Montevideo. The theater offers guided tours, but depending on who you ask the best way to experience it is to enjoy a play, opera or concert inside.

Passing through Puerta de la Ciudadela – Old city gate – one of the few remains from when our city was walled – you can enter the Old City or the Historic District of the city, and following the Peatonal  Sarandí “Pedestrian Sarandí”, which offers shops, bars and restaurants, you will reach the Rio de la Plata and blend in with the fishermen of the Escollera Sarandí, passing through plazas like the Plaza Matriz – where  the Cathedral – and the Plaza Zabala are. Because of the large concentration of offices in the area, the best time to do this walk is around noon, Monday through Friday.

If you find yourself in the area around noon, you will have several great options for lunch just a few feet away, but you can also stop at the Mercado del Puerto, a building more than 100 years old that combines upscale restaurants with simpler and more affordable grills – although the prices are not the cheapest for being an important tourist attraction, because of it’s location across from the port where many Argentine tourists, as well as international cruise travellers, arrive in the ferry Buquebús. In addition to enjoying barbecue or empanadas, at this spot you can also try two of our local delicacies: the Tannat wine and the Medio y Medio –Half and Half-, a sweet Uruguayan drink that is prepared with champagne and white wine.

Although the avenue has several plazas, the greatest attraction is not at ground level but several meters higher; the domes of the buildings. On the corner of Calle Río Negro, you will see a traditional example adorned with a sculpture of the titan Atlas. The London Paris department store stood there for several decades and was an icon of the city before shopping malls had opened in other neighborhoods.

Montevideo's Fountain Lock Bar Facal

Photo: Uruguay4u

Another attraction on 18 de Julio is a Fuente de Candados –Fountain of Locks-, located at the corner of Yi street, that was placed there by the owners of the neighborhood bar Facal. Several couples spontaneously began to vow their love to each other there, based on the romantic novels of the Italian Federico Moccia “Tre metri sopra il celo” and “Ho voglia di te”, which were later transformed into films. Incidentally, Facal is one of the places where you can try our “chivito” – a typical meat sandwich of the country-, see tango shows and take photos with a statue of Gardel.

Book here a traditional lunch with tango show in Bar Facal

It is also worth seeing the architecture of the Facultad de Derecho “Law School”, located more towards the east, between streets Eduardo Acevado and Tristan Narvaja. In this area on Sundays there is a flea market, popular among locals and tourists, where you can find of all sorts of things.

The avenue 18 de Julio ends with the Obelisk , and a few blocks away you will find Terminal Tres Cruces, “Three crosses terminal” where you can take buses to Punta del Este or Colonia del Sacramento and to the interior of the country. A brand new spot is the Sinergia Design (Eduardo Víctor Haedo 2240) where local designers have their offices and also sell their creations. How about picking up a souvenir of an artist’s own design?

Book here a day tour to Punta del Este o Colonia from Montevideo

2 – Aguada/PradoThe Legislative Palace

From Plaza Fabini, commonly known as “Plaza del Entrevero” located at the intersection of 18 de Julio and Avenida Del Libertador “Liberty Avenue”, you can take Libertador to reach the Palacio Legislativo,  which houses the offices of senators and deputies of the country. Inside it stands the Pasillo de Pasos Perdidos, an interesting space with stained glass windows and vaulted ceilings. Domestic marble in different colors was used as decoration as well as mosaics and bas-reliefs created by artists Edmundo Partti, Jose Belloni, y Juan Buffa. Guided tours available (see schedules below)

Just a few blocks away stands the complex Torre de Telecomunicaciones, a group of modern mirrored glass buildings where the company Telefonica Antel operates. The tallest building reaches 160 meters and offers a lookout point for tourists, as well as murals originally created by artist Torres García’s workshop to decorate the walls of the hospital Saint Bois, restored in the last few years. Both buildings can be seen by guided tours, (See schedules below).

In La Aguada, the name given to this part of the city, there is also the newly renovated Mercado Agricola –Agricultural Market-, a historic building which was recently restored, where not only fruits and vegetables are sold, but also has many restaurants and specialty stores. Ideal for a rainy day!

Furthest from the city center towards the northeast lies the neighborhood Prado, the country’s old aristocratic zone, where the president resides. Presidents traditionally lived in this area, until Jose “Pepe” Mujica decided to permanently install his own farm during his term. It’s worth the visit to this neighborhood to feel as if you were in the elegant Montevideo in the early part of the 20th century, with avenues lined with old mansions and estates. Although a few decades later the high national aristocracy moved to Carrasco and nowadays are even in private neighborhoods in the suburbs like La Tahona “The Flourmill”, many of the families that founded the city continue to reside in the Prado.

One of the attractions of this neighborhood is the Botanical Garden, an enclosed park filled with many varieties of trees, flowers, and plants. Another one of its strong points is The Rosedal, a walkway dedicated to our poet Juana de Ibarbourou that has four crowned by eight domes of art nouveau style and a fountain in the middle; designed by the French landscaper Charles Racine in 1912, offers about 300 varieties of ancient and modern roses. The best time to visit in spring, when the flowers are in their maximum splendor.

In Prado there is also one of the most beautiful churches in the city, called Las Carmelitas (Irigotiria Street, between Hemanos Ruiz y Av. 19 de Abril), a Catholic temple of gothic style built in the year 1929. And if you want to top off your visit with a bit of national art, you must also visit the Museum of fine Arts Juan Manuel Blanes  (Av Millan 4015). This Palladian villa offers permanent exhibitions of our artists Juan Manuel Blanes (1830-1901) and Pedro Figari (1861-1938), as well as with other travelling exhibitions and behind the museum, the Japanese Garden of Montevideo, a small but very picturesque space designed by a Japanese landscape artist.

The Rural del Prado, a property is also in this neighborhood, where spring expo fairs are held every year in autumn and spring, combining various stands from different countries – with all kinds of products available- as well as livestock barns and agricultural machinery. In addition, they put on parties, parades, concerts and other cultural activities. Check to see if your visit to the city coincides with the weeks in which La Rural Del Prado is held, and if so, do not miss it.

3 – Parque Batlle/Parque RodóThe legendary Centenario Stadium

Important features of the most central part of the city, the first is an obligatory attraction for football lovers, given that there is the Estadio Centenario. Did you know that the first world cup was held there in 1930? And that we won? And that we also won the World Cup in 1950, but in the Brazilian stadium of Maracaná? For the people of Uruguay, who are quite nostalgic (our most important night party is called “Night of Nostalgia” and is celebrated on August 24) Maracana is something that remains in our memory, even though so many decades have passed. In the stadium, there is a Football Museum, but in addition, tourists who are football fanatics can book a football tour in Montevideo that will take you to the stadium with tickets, transfers, and guide included.

Book here a football experience in Montevideo

The stadium is located in the neighborhood Jardin Parque Batlle, where El Velódromo “The Velodrome”, La Pista de Atletismo “The Athletics Track”, El Club de Tiro “The Shooting Club” and the Hospital de Clinicas “Clinical Hospital”, a place where most of the medical students undergo training to gain experience, and well known for its size and architecture, also operate.

Another neighborhood with ample green spaces is Parque Rodó, which has the advantage of being next to the Rambla and offers a small amusement park and an amphitheater, the Summer Theater, where carnival shows take place in February and during the year there are concerts of bands and artists. On Sundays, the neighborhood hosts a fair offering clothing, fruit, vegetables and other items.

In December there is an annual exhibition of books and crafts. In addition, in this location there is another interesting point for art lovers, the National Museum of Visual Arts (Julio Herrera street and Reissig corner of Tomás GGaribaldi which also has one of the largest collections of national art, with artists such as Rafael Barradas, Joaquín Torres García , José Cúneo, Carlos Federico Sáez, Pedro Figari and Juan Manuel Blanes, among others. Parque Rodó is also one of the trendy places of  Montevideo’s nightlife, both in the area neighboring the amusement park and on the border with the neighborhood Cordón.

Read here a complete nightlife guide in Montevideo

Watch here the Part II of this Montevideo Guide

By Carina Fossati, Journalist specialised in travelling and author of the blog Hills to Hells
Translated to English by Anna Englund

The post Montevideo Guide: a comprehensive neighborhood guide – PART 1 appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
11812
Where to eat in Colonia del Sacramento http://www.daytours4u.com/en/uruguay4u/where-to-eat-in-colonia/ Thu, 14 Sep 2017 15:10:01 +0000 http://daytours4u.com/en/?p=6564 Whether you’re taking a day trip to Colonia from Buenos Aires or from Montevideo, or are spending a few days exploring this pretty colonial town, there are plenty of great restaurants where to eat in Colonia to spend a great time and keep your stomach full. Colonia del Sacramento isn’t the cheapest town, however, thanks [...]

The post Where to eat in Colonia del Sacramento appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
Whether you’re taking a day trip to Colonia from Buenos Aires or from Montevideo, or are spending a few days exploring this pretty colonial town, there are plenty of great restaurants where to eat in Colonia to spend a great time and keep your stomach full.

Colonia del Sacramento isn’t the cheapest town, however, thanks to its booming tourism industry, with visitors arriving in boatloads from across the river. Rather than just wandering into the first restaurant you see when hunger strikes, make sure you get a good meal for your money by following our advice for tried-and-tested restaurants in Colonia.

Where to eat in Colonia: 8 restaurants to eat well

1. Charco

Charco is a hotel with an excellent Bistro located on a quiet street in the historic downtown area. This is a wonderful spot for a quiet breakfast, tasty lunch or delicious dinner. The menu is extensive and the service is excellent. The restaurant is modern and chic, considered by the locas as one of the top places where to eat in Colonia with a great view over the river, and a terrace outside for sunny days.
Address: San Pedro 116

The clean white interior of Charco Bistro

Enjoy an exquisite meal at the beautiful Charco Bistro / Source

2. Buen Suspiro

Located on the most emblematic street of Colonia, Calle de los Suspiros (Street of Sighs), Buen Suspiro is an old tavern that provides a traditional experience in Colonia. The cosy interior is especially wonderful on a cold winter’s day or a crisp autumn evening. Come here for a cheese and charcuterie board and a glass of wine for lunch or dinner. Buen Suspiro also has a shop selling homemade food products.
Address: Calle de los Suspiros 90

The sign and entrance to Buens Suspiro restaurant in Colonia

Duck into the cosy and traditional Buen Suspiro for wine and a cheese platter / Photo: Daytours4u

3. Los Farolitos

A little stand, with plastic chairs, looking like any typical hole-in-the-wall fast food joint, Los Farolitos is Colonia institution for those in the know. Don’t be put off by its initial appearance – this is the place where to eat in Colonia if you decided to go to for a Chivito. You can also get great hamburgers and panchos (hot dogs) here. While not located in the historic quarter, it’s just a short walk from the tourist spots along one of the main roads.
Address: Av. General Flores 272

4. Restaurant del Ferrocarril

If you’re looking for a different experience, why not dine in an old train? Restaurant del Ferrocarril (The Railroad Restaurant) is located next to Plaza de Toros, the abandoned Bull Ring. After wandering through the Railway Museum, settle into the old dining car for a delicious lunch or a romantic dinner. The food here is worth the visit to this side of the city.
Address: Circunvalacion Plaza de Toros

The romantic interior of the dining car of Restaurant del Ferrocarril

Fine dining in style at Restaurant del Ferrocarril / Source

5.Viejo Barrio

Viejo Barrio immediately catches your eye on the central cobblestone courtyard by the lighthouse, with its warm colours. It’s a great spot for a laid back meal. Be sure to try their homemade pasta.
Address: Vasconcellos 169

6. La Pulperia de los Faroles

If you’re looking for international cuisine in a good location, then head to La Pulperia de los Faroles. The prices are not the cheapest, but it offers a solid meal option in the charming main plaza of the historic quarter.
Address: Misiones de los Tapes 101

The pink building of Pulperia de los Faroles

You can’t miss the pink building of Pulperia de los Faroles

7. El Drugstore

Right next door to Viejo Barrio you’ll find the wonderfully eclectic El Drugstore. Not a drugstore, this quirkily decorated restaurant serves up a variety of tapas and other meals. On weekends, there is live music here. When you see the old cars with tables inside, and plants growing out of them, you’ll know you’re in the right place!
Address: Corner of Portugal and Vasconcellos

Chefs at work in the kitchen of El Drugstore

Chefs at work inside the quirky El Drugstore / Source

8. Don Joaquin

While you may feel inclined to stick to Uruguayan classics such as chivito, asado (barbecue), or fresh seafood, sometimes you just need to give into a pizza craving. Luckily Colonia is home to Don Joaquin. Serving delicious artisanal pizza and buena onda (good vibes), this is a great dinner option.
Address: 18 de Julio 267

A pizza going into the wood-fired oven

Enjoy a delicious pizza at Don Joaquin / Source

For trendy foodies:

– Gitana Gastrobar: with a great view to the River, this bistró has a wonderful view to chill out and spend a lovely sunny afternoon. Their menu is an example of the evolution of local uruguayan gastronomy.
Address: Misiones de los Tapes 41

– Miss Fusion Colonia:  a gastro pub that integrates art and culture. In their art gallery next to the restaurant, they often have exhibitions and concerts. Their dining room offers an intimate setting perfect to try their great menu alongside author cocktails, craft beer and the best uruguayan wine.
Address: Manuel Lobo 449 esquina Alberto Mendez

 

Tips On Eating Out in Colonia:

  • Many places do not take credit card. Some places accept foreign currency. We recommend checking what the payment options are before ordering.
  • Since many restaurants cater to tourists and accept foreign currency, confirm the currency the menu is in. Remember that the Uruguayan Peso is usually marked with a $ while US Dollars are marked as USD.
  • A standard tip at a restaurant is 10%. Check your bill to see whether it has been included or not.
  • While the restaurants around the windmill on the coast of the historic quarter have spectacular views, they tend to be overpriced for the food they offer. They are, however, a great option for a drink at sunset.
  • As you walk back out of the Historic Quarter towards the port, stop at Freddo for an ice cream. The perfect way to end a day in Colonia!

Eating is not the only thing to do in Colonia! Book your experiences in Colonia with Uruguay4u!

Book tours in Colonia

By: Nicole Eberhard

The post Where to eat in Colonia del Sacramento appeared first on Daytours4u.

]]>
6564