These 23 Pictures Capture the Hidden Beauty of Uruguay's Seaside Shores

La Paloma lighthouse at sunset
La Paloma lighthouse at sunset | © Marcelo Campi / Flickr
Georgia Mizen

With quirky lighthouses punctuating the horizon and seals sunning themselves on the rocks, Uruguay’s coastline is an Instagrammer’s dream. Head to Piriápolis to wander the chic boardwalk and on to Punta del Diablo to surf the waves. When the sun goes down, there’s no better place to gaze upon the heavens than remote Cabo Polonio. Here are 23 pictures of Uruguay’s seaside shores to inspire your next trip.

José Ignacio

José Ignacio is Uruguay’s chicest beach destination. Thronging with socialites and models, it’s the place to be and be seen. From its pretty lighthouse to the quirky art galleries, this is a fishing village on the up. Escape the buzz of Punta del Este and spend a weekend among the rich and beautiful – be sure to stop by Marismo for the catch of the day and a bottle of red.

Marismo, Ruta 10km 185, José Ignacio, Uruguay, +598 4486 2273

The lighthouse at José Ignacio

Río de la Plata

The vast River Plate between Uruguay and Argentina feeds into the Atlantic and laps at the country’s western shores. Once the site of many battles and the transit route of three different empires, it’s now a tranquil open water with a chequered history. Look out for vintage boats sailing the gentle waves and rare glimpses of the shy La Plata dolphin.

Playa Arazati
A sunset in Salto
Bella Union boats
A shipwreck at dusk

Punta del Este

There’s so much more to Punta del Este than nightclubs and The Hand. Venture out from the centre and you’ll find some of the prettiest seashores in Uruguay. Spend an afternoon exploring Casapueblo; at twilight, head for the city’s lighthouse. Grab a mate and a flask and settle in for a breathtaking sunset.

Casapueblo, Camino a la Ballena, Punta Ballena, Maldonado, Uruguay, +598 4257 8041

Casapueblo
Punta del Este lighthouse

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