Photo Essay: Exploring Colonia del Sacramento
The Barrio Histórico section of Colonia del Sacramento is designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, and one of the “must see” attractions for travelers visiting Uruguay. In fact, it is also a popular day-trip for Buenos Aires travelers as well because a ferry across the Rio de la Plata with have you there in about an hour.
In my little piece of paintography above, you can see Carol (center) with our Kensington Tours guide (left) crossing a wooden drawbridge that serves as an entrance to this famous and historic quarter of the city.
Colonia del Sacramento was built in 1680 by the Portuguese with a fortified wall surrounding the city to protect the inhabitants of the small colony from the Spanish who had built the city of Buenos Aires across the Rio de la Plata (river). You see, in the 17th century, the Spanish and Portuguese were constantly at war with each other to control the important Rio de la Plata which ushered access to the rich gold and silver deposits in northern South America. Control for the city of Colonia del Sacramento changed hands between Spain and Portugal 11 times before Uruguay finally became an independent nation in 1828.
Once inside the historic fortified walls, our Kensington Tours private guide told us stories about the city, and showed us centuries-old buildings abutting many authentic cobblestone streets.
A number of the buildings are now privately owned, and when we walked inside the door above we found a delightful artist’s gallery.
We found one of the buildings turned into a boutique hotel…
with quite a number of the historic buildings turned now into restaurants, and souvenir shops.
Further, adding to the romance of the city, we found historic cars parked seemingly everywhere we looked.
Towards the center of this former colony, we found a grand lighthouse looming against threatening skies with spaghetti-like wires coming down its sides. I thought a little paintography applied to my photograph might add a little drama of the scene. Like it? 🙂
Oh, and for the dog lovers in our audience, I thought you might enjoy seeing this ole boy keeping watch over the town. He was hilarious. As travelers walked by, he never moved a muscle, only his eyes. Hah…
Here’s Carol and our guide (Rosario) waiting for me to snap a photograph of the Basilica del Santisimo Sacramento built by the Portuguese in 1808.
And just for kicks, I thought you might enjoy seeing the interior of one of the historic building where we enjoyed a wonderful lunch. Although it’s probably sacrilegious to have such a meal in Uruguay, I had a fabulous plate of authentic Hungarian goulash. YUM! 🙂 The name of the restaurant was Meson de la Plaza. We highly recommend it!
Oh heck, while I’m at it, take a look at my goulash. Uruguayan beef with real spaetzle!
Looks good, doesn’t it?
If you would like to learn more about Kensington Tours private guided experiences, give us a call at (480) 550-1235. We’ll take care of all the details, and set you on our own amazing private custom tour.
So, let’s get started! What new country can we help you arrange a private customized travel experience? Maybe Europe, the Far East, South America, New Zealand, Australia, or perhaps even an African safari? Kensington Tours offers experiences all over the world, and we’re here to help!
Disclosure: our private custom tour was provided by the very kind folks at Kensington Tours. Thanks! We had a blast!
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