4 – 8 November

Even though the water is not deep blue yet, Montevideo – Uruguay’s capital – has an ocean feel with its endless promenade along the waterfront and its decent city beaches and parks. My host Jennifer is busy moving into a new place on the day I arrive so I am automatically part of the team and help her move her stuff. I cannot complain though, as her new place is inside Palacio Salvo a beautiful, old building located right at Plaza Independencia, the city’s main plaza, on the edge of the old part of town and just three blocks from the waterfront.

I learn that Montevideo and in fact the entire country is fairly small (especially in comparison to its neighbours Argentina and Brazil) but very open, easy going and modern in many ways: buses leave on time and are equiped with wifi, locals are super friendly, people line up when waiting for local buses, everyone is respected no matter what nationality or gender, Marihuana is legal and mate (herbal tea) and asado (BBQ) with friends might be even more important than in Argentina… It kind of reminds me of The Netherlands and makes me feel quite comfortable.

I spend an entire day strolling up and down the long waterfront enjoying the breeze and the hot temperatures, stopping again and again to sit down along the promenade, in one or two parks and at the beach, ending up watching a beautiful sunset with an ice-cold beer in my hand.

The next day, I put my focus on Montevideo’s old part of town as well as its harbour, however, it is very very tranquil even for a Sunday – just like a Sunday in Germany. So I guess that is a difference compared to The Netherlands where Sunday almost is the most vibrant day of the week (in some parts at least).

After heading up to the newer part of the city as well, I have seen enough and cannot wait to keep on going just a little further east to hit the Atlantic coast with its blue waters and its fine beaches.

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