Information about Uruguay

Information about Uruguay
Information about Montevideo city
Information about Punta del Este city

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HOW TO GET TO URUGUAY? The usual way is by plane, taking an international flight from your home country to Montevideo city (Capital of Uruguay). Pluna (the Uruguayan carrier) and Iberia have connecting flights from São Paulo, Asunción, Santiago de Chile and Madrid. There are other companies that also have flights to Montevideo. American Airlines has a non-stop flight from Miami to Montevideo. The flight is 4 times a week and runs all year round, the other three days it connects via Buenos Aires (EZE). Most long haul flights from Montevideo stop in Buenos Aires, Santiago, or São Paulo before going on.

Iberia, the Spanish airline also provides very regular flights between Europe and Uruguay, and LAN connects to Australia and New Zealand via Chile.

Arriving by boat: it is an usualt trip, arriving by ferry from Buenos Aires. The ferry service operates between Buenos Aires, Argentina, and both Colonia del Sacramento and Montevideo

Basic Facts:

Capital: Montevideo city
Currency: Uruguayan peso (UYU)
Areatotal: 176,220 km2
land: 173,620 km2
water: 2,600 km2
Population: 3,386,575 (July 2002 est.)
Language: Spanish (official)

Religion: Roman Catholic 66%, Protestant 2%, Jewish 1%, nonprofessing or other 31%
Calling Code: +598
Time Zone: UTC -3

The name Uruguay means river of the colorful birds. It is related to the name Guyana: Arawak Guayana, land of many waters. Often called the Switzerland of South America not for geographical features but for a stable democracy and social benefits such as free education.

Flanked by Brazil and Argentina, tiny Uruguay shares with its bigger neighbours a love of football (the first World Cup took place here in 1930), gaucho culture (horsemen, cattle ranches and big open skies) and surf-pounded beaches, several of which have gained an international reputation as the hot spot du jour.

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Climate
Uruguay's climate is relatively mild, with very nice temperatures. Located entirely within the temperate zone Uruguay has a climate that is fairly uniform nationwide. Seasonal variations are pronounced, but extremes in temperature are rare. As would be expected by its abundance of water, high humidity and fog are common. Uruguay has a largely uniform temperature throughout the year, summer being tempered by winds off the Atlantic, and severe cold in winter is unknown.

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INFORMATION ABOUT MONTEVIDEO CITY:

Montevideo is the largest city, the capital, and the chief port of Uruguay. The settlement was established in 1726 by Bruno Mauricio de Zabala, as a strategic move amidst a Spanish-Portuguese dispute over theplatine region, and as a counter to the Portuguese colony at Colonia del Sacramento. According to the census of 2004, Montevideo has a population of 1,325,968 (about half of Uruguay's population). It has an area of 530 square kilometres (200 sq mi) and extends 20 kilometres (12 mi) from west to east. The southernmost cosmopolitan capital city in the Americas and third most southern in the world, it is situated in the southern coast of the country, on the northeastern bank of the Río de la Plata( Spanish: "Silver River") — which is often referred to in English-speaking countries as the River Plate.

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Tourism accounts for much of Uruguay's economy. Tourism in Montevideo is centered in the Ciudad Vieja area, which includes the city's oldest buildings, several museums, art galleries, and nightclubs, with Sarandí Street and the Mercado del Puerto being the most frequented venues of the old city. On the edge of Ciudad Vieja, Plaza Independencia is surrounded by many sights, including the Solís Theatre and the Palacio Salvo; the plaza also constitutes one end of 18 de Julio Avenue, the city's most important tourist destination outside of Ciudad Vieja. Apart from being a shopping street, the avenue is noted for its Art Deco buildings, three important public squares, the Gaucho Museum, the Palacio Municipal and many other sights. The avenue leads to the Obelisk of Montevideo; beyond that is Parque Batlle, which along with the Parque Prado is another important tourist destination. Along the coast, the Fortaleza del Cerro, the Rambla (the coastal avenue), 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) of sandy beaches, and Punta Gorda attract many tourists, as do the Barrio Surand Palermo barrios.

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Ciudad Vieja was the earliest part of the city to be developed and today it constitutes a prominent barrio of southwest Montevideo. It contains many colonial buildings and national heritage sites, but also many banks, administrative offices, museums, art galleries, cultural institutions, restaurants and night-clubs, making it vibrant with life. Its northern coast is the main port of Uruguay, one of the few deep-draft ports in the Southern Cone of South America. Montevideo's most important plaza is Plaza Independencia, located between Ciudad Vieja and downtown Montevideo. It starts with theGateway of The Citadel at one end and ends at the beginning of 18 de Julio Avenue. It is the remaining part of the wall that surrounded the oldest part of the city. Several notable buildings are located here.

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Information about Punta del Este

Punta del Este is located in the southeast side of Uruguay, in the district Maldonado, approximately 130km from Montevideo, and parts the river “Río de la Plata” from the Atlantic Ocean. Maldonado has a permanent population of approximately 12.000 inhabitants and more than 700.000 visitors per year.

Punta del Este is known internationally like one of the principal seaside resorts in whole Latin America; white sand, blue waters, dunes, islands, lagoons, saws and forests conjugate with a varied and luxurious architecture.

Punta del Este is one of the most lifely cities of Uruguay during the summer, and it offers a large number of free time activities, no matter if you’d like to enjoy the nature, explore the nightlife, practise water sports, or just enjoy going to the beach.

The city looks like a peninsula and can be split up into two areas or coasts: Playa Mansa and Playa Brava. Both beaches borders on the Atlantic Ocean. For a long time Punta del Este was considered to be a vacation destination for the Jet set because of its luxurious hotels and exquisite restaurants but there are numerous alternatives at a lower price so that everybody can find an adequate accommodation and suitable free time activities. In Punta del Este there’s something for everybody, that’s why the city is also called “the pearl of Uruguay”

SECURITY AND HEALTH:
A safe city complemented by the high standard of health in Uruguay, due to the good quality of its tap water, which is perfectly drinkable throughout the country, and its complete sanitation system.

CLIMATE:
Due to its excellent climate, Uruguay is pleasant to visit at any time of the year. The average temperatures according to season are as follows:
Spring: September – December 17.5°C or 60°F
Summer: December – March 25°C or 78°F
Autumn: March – June 18°C or 67°F
Winter: June – September 12°C or 53°F

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