Find information, maps and high quality videos & photographs on locations in Uruguay
Uruguay is located in South America on the South Atlantic Coast. The country borders Argentina on the West and Brazil to the North. The major cities are all along the South Atlantic coastline including the capital Montevideo.
The name "Uruguay" means river of colourful birds, which is illustrative of the many colourful birds that inhabit the forests along the Rio Negro river.
The original inhabitants were Charrua Indians from Paraguay, their Rock Art can still be found at sites throughout Uruguay today. The Spanish first settled the interior lowlands around the Rio Negro river for cattle farming and only expanded their colonisation after Portugal built a fort at Colonia del Sacramento. Montevideo was founded as a commercial port by the Spanish and it has developed into the main trade point between Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. Uruguay became independent of Portugal and Spain in 1825 but their influence is still evident in the culture and architecture. Economic and social development of Uruguay transpired as immigrants from Italy and Spain began building infrastructure and improved farming techniques.
As it is becoming more well known, tourism to Uruguay is increasing. The main tourists areas are along the coastline with the most popular areas being the capital Montevideo for its pristine beaches; Punte Del Este for its beaches, night life and shopping; and Colonial Del Sacramento for its world heritage listed historic buildings and sites. Other areas are less touristy and many of the small towns in the interior experience few visitors. For those wanting to get away from the tourist resorts and beaches, the Eastern Wetlands is a UNESCO declared biosphere reserve with swamps, lagoons, marshes, and streams all inhabited with hundreds of bird species.
The first Football World Cup was held in Uruguay in 1930, football is still an important part of the culture today.