We went to Uruguay a few weeks ago where we covered 3 cities in 3 days (its a pretty small country). We took a 1 hour boat ride from Buenos to Colonia, a small historical city in Uruguay. It was a beautiful little place - cobblestone streets, a harbor, cute restaurants - all that adorable stuff you find in old cities. We spent the night there and then left the next day for Punta del Este, which is considered the Miami of that part of South America. I don't know about that comparison but it is definitely a really nice beach resort town - gorgeous beaches, designer stores and fancy restaurants. We were there during off-season so it was quieter than usual. And we saw 3 sea lions up close! They're way bigger than I thought and they make some wacky grunting noises.
The next day, on our way out of Punta del Este we went to my favorite place in Uruguay - Casa Pueblo. Its a huge estate designed by Uruguayan artist, Carlos Paez Vilaro who wanted to create a sculpture to live in. It is so incredible! Seriously, a work of art. The outside looks like a Dr. Suess palace and the inside is a cave-like maze of tunnels lined with paintings by Vilaro. Now, it is used as a hotel. Check out the pics!
We spent our last night in the capital city, Montevideo. Probably the least exciting of the 3 cities but we still had fun. We found a bar with really great live music and a group of amazing salsa dancers.