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Fishing Boats in Harbour, Punta del Este, Uruguay

Punta Del Este

Punta del Este is a glamorous upscale beach resort jutting out on a small peninsula at the southern tip of Uruguay.

A stroll along the oceanfront promenade, Rambla Williman, reveals many unspoilt beaches scaling two opposing coastlines. Playa Mansa traces the calmer waterfront of Rio de la Plata while the sand dunes of Playa Brava are lashed by Atlantic Ocean waves, favoured mostly by surfers.

The hand in the dunes, punta del este, uruguay
Punta del Este, Uruguay

A little more about Punta del Este

Most of the elite and well-heeled from South America descend upon the yacht marina at Playa Mansa before heading to the exclusive town of La Barra to lounge on Bikini Beach, closely pursued by a fleet of paparazzi. The small fishing village of Jose Ignacio is a quieter and more scenic alternative, nestled along the Ruta 10 beyond La Barra on Playa Brava.

Partially submerged in the sand at Playa de los Dedos is an enormous hand sculpture, ‘Monumento al Ahogado’, a stark warning to swimmers of the strong currents that yield from there-on eastwards.

 

Gorriti island, Punta del Este, Uruguay
Gorriti island, Punta del Este, Uruguay

The small island of Gorriti lies just offshore with deserted beaches and a pine-clad interior beside the remains of an 18th century fortress. A further boat ride away leads to Isla de Lobos, home to a large colony of sea lions that welcome visitors with an enthusiastic barrage of deafening barks. Other nautical activities here include fishing, surfing and sailing or for those preferring land based interests, a number of 18-hole golf courses are dotted in and around Punta del Este.

 

Punta del Este, Uruguay
Uruguay

Snaking dramatically through the peninsula, Gorlero Avenue is lined with numerous galleries, restaurants and designer boutiques to keep even the most earnest shopper entertained. Furthermore, an evening stroll around the Feria Hippie craft market on Plaza Artigas offers a superb myriad of jewellery, crafts and leather goods at which to marvel.

Meet our experts

A passion for travel runs right through every one of our experts - meaning they're always ready with first-hand insight about their specialist countries.

James Armitage

This small country is a firm favourite of James’s, who loves the quirky capital of Montevideo, the rich farmland interior, the winelands and the trendy beaches of Uruguay.
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