Uruguay, officially known as the Oriental Republic of Uruguay, is the second smallest country in the continent of South America. It is a stunningly beautiful costal country with a coastline of 680 km. Located in the south of Brazil and east of Argentina, Uruguay recently became one of the very few countries in the world to legalize marijuana and same sex marriages.

Uruguay has a rich history, extending from its colonization in 15th century, to its independence struggle in the early part of 18th century. The 20th century was marred with conflicts for the country, until finally; democracy was reinstated in the mid eighties.

Today it is known for huge steaks, pristine beaches, incredibly lively cities and a nightlife that matches the best in the world.

Uruguay (Creative Commons)
Uruguay (Creative Commons)

Mesmerizing Culture and Captivating Music

Uruguay is influenced by European and Southern European cultures, owing to its colonization in the 15th century. What ‘cowboys’ is to America; ‘Gaucho’ is to Uruguay, an influence it shares with almost the entire South American continent.

Music plays an important role in the lives of the people of Uruguay. Dance genres like tango are particularly popular here, while the folk dance, known as “candombe” is performed at the Uruguayan Carnival.

Finger-Licking Cuisine

Uruguay is a haven for meat eaters, particularly those who love beef, as the country is the world’s top consumer when it comes to beef.  Barbecued beef, known as “asado” is the national dish of Uruguay and loved by the locals and the tourists alike.

“Grappamiel”, made with alcohol and honey is a local brew and is served during winters and autumns. Uruguay produces some of the finest wines in the world and you must book yourself a wine tasting tour to experience the plethora of incredible wines that the land offers.

Uruguayans love their food and prepare and serve it with a lot of enthusiasm and consideration. It is difficult to not get carried away in the constant festive atmosphere of the country and over-indulge in the delicacies. By the time you come back from your vacation, you would have gained a few extra pounds.

Sports and Activities

The country is a die-hard soccer fan and has a national team as well. Surrounded by countries with equally reputed soccer teams – Argentina and Brazil – Uruguay takes soccer seriously. If Uruguayan team plays a tournament, the entire country comes to a standstill.

If you are a poker fan, keep in mind that the Grand Final of the Latin American Poker Tour takes place in Uruguay from November 13 to 17, 2013 and you can learn more or qualify through PokerStars LAPT.

There are numerous other activities in Uruguay. Horse trekking, cycling, guided bus tours, training in Tango are just some of the different kind of activities you can indulge in.

The scenic lush natural bounty of Uruguay will help you connect with yourself and you will come out rejuvenated and charged.