I wasn’t quite sure what to expect in Montevideo, but our full day private tour exceeded expectations. First, I didn’t realize that it had so many beaches. The statistic that our tour guide gave us was either 22 miles or 22 Kilometers of beaches. I think it was the first as the beaches seemed to go on forever.
Most of the beaches are on the Rio De La Plata, which looks like a bay, but is technically the estuary formed by the confluence of the Uruguay and Paraná rivers. So the water is mostly fresh but sometimes brackish.
We enjoyed a tour of the downtown with a mausoleum of the “Father of Uruguayan Independence” José Gervasio Artigas. Across from this monument, in the Independence Plaza, is Palacio Salvo, once the tallest building in South America. Other sites we took in were the newly renovated Sofitel Hotel (I even took pictures in the ladies powder room because it was so pretty), a big Montevideo Sign over looking the most famous beach, Playa de Los Pocitos, the navy monument, several scenic vistas, and the La Carreta, a monument to gauchos and cowboys.
We also had two opportunities to try the famous Uruguayan beef, with the traditional sandwich called a Chivito at one of the grill restaurants in the Mercado del Puerto.