Uruguay’s capital city is a port town with a rich history. Colorful buildings remind its visitors of Miami and Cuba. You can enjoy relaxing walks on the city’s 14 miles of beach, and visit Ciudad Vieja, the city’s oldest neighborhood. Montevideo comes alive at night as bars and nightclubs play tango music that will surely get you up and dancing. Whether you’re interested in taking in the architectural sights, relaxing on the beach or dance the night away, Montevideo surely has something for everyone.
The city of Montevideo extends from the extreme southeast of Rio de la Plata along a circular gulf that offers a natural harbor. Montevideo marvels its visitors with the huge offer for everyone’s taste.
Sightseeing: The most interesting area for visitors are the Ciudad Vieja (Old Town) and Centro. Avenida 18 de Julio starts at Plaza Independencia, dominated by Palacio Salvo, an Art Deco highrise of 102m that is considered the symbol of Montevideo. Also in Plaza Independencia visitors can’t miss Artiga’s Mausoleum (a museum to Uruguayan hero José Artigas). Another point of interest in the old town is Plaza Constitución. Another sight is the former city hall palace called Palacio Legislativo.
Promenades & Markets: Montevideo’s beautiful Promenade introduces visitors to the City and crosses the entire Old City and the Port Market, a must see fascinating old-fashioned market with an outdoor area filled with vendors displaying delicious meat, achuras and pamplonas. Outside the market you can see candombe (Uruguay’s national music) and handicrafts. The Promenade features paths that enable people to go all along the shore on their roller skates or bicycles and also invite to take long walks, equipped with mate (a sort of tea everybody shares), both in the early morning and the afternoon.
Food: Do not be surprised to see people walking down the street with their thermos under their armpit pouring boiling hot water into their mate while walking ( yes, Uruguayans have the unique ability of walking while not only drinking but also SERVING boiling hot mate!). And, no visit to Montevideo would be complete without trying Chivito (veal tenderloin, lettuce, tomato, ham, cheese, bacon and egg, everything together either in a sandwich or on a plate, according to the customer’s preference) accompanied by a good, cold Pilsen beer. For a local experience, try the little stalls “Carritos” on nearly every corner of the promenade or on 18 de Julio Avenue for a “Frankfurter” or “Choripán” (sausage sandwich)
Music: If there is one thing that characterizes Uruguay –and of course, its Capital– is its lively and colorful Comparsas, Candombe and Murgas. Las Llamadas (the Calls) are the largest popular celebrations in Uruguay. Every year in February, Montevideo is ornamented for Candombe and Comparsas to take part in the Carnival Celebrations, especially in the neighborhoods of Sur and Palermo.
Climate Montevideo is in the subtropics, so while there are months when a t-shirt is not enough, temperatures seldom drop below freezing. In the summer months, temperatures above +30°C are common. There are no particular "rainy" and "dry" seasons: the amount of rain stays roughly the same throughout the year.
Montevideo can be reached by plane, bus or a very recommended and beautiful 1.5 or 3hs boat ride (Buquebus) from Buenos Aires. Once in Montevideo, although the city is perfect for walking, visitors can also try the old “trolebús” systems (electric buses), regular buses or taxis (although being the capital, Montevideo does not have a subway system).
-History, sightseeing & culture: The Old Town, the Promenade, 18 de Julio Avenue, The “Puerta de la Ciudadela” and the Port Market are just a few examples of the Capital’s must see places.
-Music & Carnival: Let yourself go with the passion of Candombe, Murga and Llamadas everywhere, specially in February
-Food: Be ready to indulge yourself with Chivitos, choripán, mate and tortas fritas.
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