We visited here as a day trip from Montevideo. It’s an easy bus ride away. We were almost convinced to take a tour from our hotel for a cost of $65.00.Instead we caught the local bus and for us this turned out to be the best option.
The bus station in Montevideo is new and very modern...with many different bus companies offering travel all over Uruguay and beyond.
We bought our return ticket from Turel, departing at 10:00 and returning at 6PM. It's an easy 2.5 hour trip .
A short walk from the bus stop takes us into the Old Town. The area dates back to the 1600's and is a wonder and delight to explore.
By now it’s lunch time so we stopped at one of the several outdoor restaurants on Ave de Flores. Rightly or wrongly we decided to order the Special of the Day. This is an easy "Out" , when you can't read the menu. Chevitos de pan is a local favorite .It is a huge sandwich with steak, egg ,ham, cheese and bacon and a huge portion of fries. This is a dieters nightmare but tasty. At a cost of $9.00 it also came with a drink and a dessert!
Not sure why but there are lots of really great old cars around, kind of reminded me of Cuba.
We took a leisurely stroll stopping often for photos .The ancient old buildings ,often just ruins, begged us to stop for pictures.
Colonia is a joy to explore by foot. We follow cobbled stone streets to what was once a main town area of 1600's Colonia. The ancient stone houses, shaded by massive palms are a wonder to behold .We just couldn't get enough pictures!
We were on the lookout for the Street of Sighs. The oldest street in Colonia with the romantic name. It didn’t take us long to find it .This is a street with the original cobble stones with the drainage area to the sea down the middle and where soldiers walked to battle , leaving loved ones behind
Perhaps because we live near the ocean , we always head first to the coast.
The old wharf has long since disappeared but the current one offers nice views of the coast. There are lots of inviting restaurants along this area too.
We eventually come to the Lighthouse and the Ruins of San Francisic. The ruins are of an ancient convent that burned in the 1600's and the old Lighthouse dates back to 1704. Both are popular picture spots. The gates lead into the lower part of the Old City. Even though they look ancient they were actually rebuilt in 1968.
Plaza de Mayo-Dating back to the earliest times of the City ,this area was once used for military maneuvers. Later gardens were installed and today many come here simply to enjoy the area. There are some really colorful little shops around Plaza Mayo .They see lots of handicrafts and artwork . We are traveling so light we had to be content with just window shopping.
Our last stop before catching the bus is at the Basiliac of the Holy Sacrament -So beautiful and peaceful in its simplicity . This 200 year old church is a wonderful example of Portuguese design. The bell tower was restored in 1957.
Drugstore Bar and Restaurant
We stop at the Drugstore Bar and Restaurant, for a break, before heading to the bus. It's a cool artsy kind of place near the Basilica. They have live jazz music here in the evenings. We enjoyed the most delicious chocolate cake of all time!!