Uruguay is definitely underrated in my opinion, and definitely somewhere you should check out if you’re in South America – especially if you’re in Argentina as it literally takes a couple hours to get there by ferry from Buenos Aires. EASY
The perfect Uruguay itinerary…
Arriving from Buenos Aires
Colonia del Sacramento
This place is very small but beautiful and should definitely be in your Uruguay itinerary. If you have less than a week, you only need a day here whilst passing through to Montevideo, however if you have more time then you could spend a night or two here. The old town is beautiful. <3
Buses go from Colonia main bus terminal to Montevideo every hour or so. The journey takes around 2ish hours.
Montevideo actually surprised me. The city has a lot of character, and some good shopping although in general Uruguay is pretty spenny (my bank balance did not thank me for those few days). I stayed at El Viajero hostel which I would recommend as it has a good atmosphere and is in a good location (I think it’s been refurbished since those Tripadvisor pics – check it out on Hostelworld). Take a free walking tour with the hostel to get to know the city.
Punta del Este
I heard and read mixed reviews about Punta del Este as its buzz depends on the time of year. It’s the place lots of South Americans head to on holiday, so can be very busy at the right time of year, and other times not so much. I was here end of November and it was just starting to pick up. I liked it 🙂 Make sure you walk right to the tip of the point for great ocean views, and head to Articos for sunset and great sushi & seafood.
If you’re not feeling Punta del Este or you’re there at the wrong time of year then I would defo skip Punta del Diablo as it’s smaller.
Again, the best way to get to Punta del Diablo is by bus with the same companies as above, which takes 2.5 hours.
Punta del Diablo
I actually went straight from Punta del Este to Porto Alegre in Brazil, however I heard that it’s a cute little town and worth a visit if you have enough time.
Take a night bus to Porto Alegre in Brazil. From Punta del Este they leave at around 10pm, pass through Punta del Diablo on the way and arrive into Porto Alegre at around 9am. This was THE best and comfiest night bus I’ve ever been on, book it at the bus station in Punta del Este or Punta del Diablo.
How long should I spend in each place?
1 night Colonia, 2 or 3 nights Montevideo, 2 nights Punta del Este, 1 or 2 night Punta del Diablo
Other posts you may enjoy if you’re planning a trip to South America:
The perfect itinerary for one week in Bolivia (including info on the Amazon)