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Joaquín Torres García. “Constructivo Uruguay”, 1943; 70 x 50 cm. © Museo Torres García. | |

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Colonia del Sacramento Declared a World Cultural Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1995, the city of Colonia del Sacramento is a historical jewel in itself. Walking through its streets, you will discover the cultural wealth and diversity that gave rise to the Uruguayan people.



Lighthouses and Fortresses Along the Atlantic coast, a series of lighthouses and fortresses that used to keep watch, give warning and offer protection still look out over the sea. The lighthouses between Colonia and Rocha are: Del Farallón, La Panela, Colonia del Sacramento, Cerro de Montevideo, Isla de Flores, Punta Brava, Punta del Este, José Ignacio, Isla de Lobos and Cabo Santa María. In Rocha you will find the Fortress of Santa Teresa and Fort San Miguel.



Heritage Architecture Montevideo preserves examples of different eras, styles and trends that are now rarely seen in other places, such as Art Nouveau and Art Dec贸. These include the Jos茅 Artigas Railway Station, Centennial Stadium (venue of the first ever World Soccer Championship), Montevideo Cathedral, the Cabildo, Club Uruguay, Ciudadela Gate and the colorful Reus neighborhood. There are also particularly beautiful examples of the sculpted ceramic tile and brickwork designed by the world-renowned engineer Eladio Dieste.



Performing arts Montevideo is a theater centre, a city where good theater can be appreciated year round. The offerings are remarkably extensive and varied, with classic and modern works of theater and a wide range of dance performances and festivals. Uruguayan films have recently earned international awards, and film festivals are held in Montevideo, Punta del Este and Piriรกpolis. New Uruguayan cinema is world class, innovative and vital, stimulating and challenging the viewer and offering an alternative to regular commercial programming.



Museums Uruguay has museums, cultural centers and exhibition halls where you can admire the works of a wide array of renowned Uruguayan artists like Juan Manuel Blanes, Rafael Barradas, Pedro Figari, Joaquín Torres García, José Cúneo, Luis Alberto Solari, Manuel Espínola Gómez and Ignacio Iturria, among others. Once a year, during the “Museums at Night” event, the general public and artists from every discipline – literature, dance, theatre, performance, music – participate in a huge celebration.



Tradition The “gaucho”, archetypical character of the countryside, is a tranquil main who travels on horseback and loves the wandering life, guitar playing and “mate” drinking. Every year in the Prado Creole Festival in Montevideo, during Holy Week, and during Gaucho Homeland Week, they celebrate their status of rural men. The “mate”, an essential element or Uruguayan culture, has been from the beginning the constant companion of the men who lived and worked on the land. As the years passed, the drink gradually moved from the country to the city, and today drinking “mate” is a common practice throughout Uruguay. The “tortas fritas” (fried pastries) are especially prepared in rainy evenings to eat while drinking mate, together with the family and friends.



Archivo familia Zitarroza ® Zitarrosa, Derechos Reservados.

Rhythms When it comes to music, the most Uruguayan of genres are candombe, folklore and tango. The world’s best-known tango tune, “La Cumparsita”, was written by Uruguayan composer Gerardo Mattos Rodríguez, while Carlos Gardel is internationally recognized and considered the greatest tango singer of all times. In the popular folk music genre, Alfredo Zitarrosa is a veritable legend thanks to his unique, incomparable voice.



Popular festivals Uruguay’s carnival celebrations are the world’s longest and last throughout the entire month of February, filling the streets of the capital city with the infectious beat of candombe drums. Drumming troupes, murga choral groups and variety show ensembles participate in the official competition held at the Ramón Collazo Summer Theater in Montevideo. Other popular festivals featuring genres from folk music to tango to rock are held throughout the year and throughout the country.



Markets and crafts Thanks to the high quality long appreciated by visitors, Uruguayan crafts are now being sold in various parts of the world. Some of the most impressive are the goods made from wood, leather, bone, wool and precious stones. They can be admired and purchased in specialized shops, as well as at a large number of traditional markets. Some of these are set in permanent locations, others are traveling markets. Natural quarries of precious and semi-precious stones like agates and amethysts, exported around the world, can be visited in the departments of Artigas, Rivera and Tacuaremb贸.



Walks Throughout the country there are places that invite you to lose yourself gazing into distant horizons, surrounded by pure air and abundant light. Places like Quebrada de los Cuervos, Salto del Penitente, Cerro Arequita and Villa Serrana are tipically visited by families. In the capital, Montevideo, places like the rose gardens of Prado, the Port of Buceo and the Mercado del Puerto (Port Market) are perfect for taking an unforgettable stroll.



Gastronomy Uruguayan cuisine combines traditions of highly varied origins, resulting in typical dishes like grilled meat “parrillada” as well as others more characteristic of Spanish and Italian cuisine. The “chivito” and “torta frita” are unique traditional dishes. Uruguayan dishes can be accompanied with a wide range of local wines that have won international prizes for their taste and quality, especially those made from Tannat grapes. Also popular are such homemade specialties as liqueurs, fresh fruit jams and preserves, baked goods, and dairy products like cheesesand the sweet, creamy spread known as “dulce de leche”.




176.215 km2


3.314.466 inhabitants



Official language



Uruguayan Peso


Winter 6º/17º C

Watch at Uruguay Natural Tv

Summer 21º/28º C

Rambla 25 de Agosto de 1825 y Yacaré | Tel.: 00 (598 2) 1885100 Montevideo, Uruguay |

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For more information and downloadable maps visit:

Photographs: Archivo Fotográfico Ministerio de Turismo y Deporte - Enrique Pérez y Leonardo Correa, Aguaclara Fotostock Uruguay, Aníbal Bogliaccini, Archivo familia Zitarroza, Armando Sartorotti, Arturo Bottino, Dirección de Cultura - MEC, INAC - INAVI, Julián Guisado Arnaste, Kromostock, Laroux Cine, Museo Torres García, Museo Blanes, Prensa y RR.PP. - Intendencia de Durazno, Revista Gente. This material is to take away | November 2012

Cultura uruguaya  
Cultura uruguaya