Official state name: Oriental Republic of Uruguay
Uruguay has approximately 3.251.000 inhabitants, of which about 3.200.000 (98,4% of the population) Spanish native speakers.
Besides Spanish, in Uruguay people also speak Portunol.
Head of State and Government Chief is José Mujica.
Uruguay covers an area of approximately 176.000 km² and borders on Argentina and Brazil.
Currency of Uruguay: Peso uruguayo (code: UYU, currency symbol: $U)
Current time in Uruguay: 01:15:57 h
Time difference between Uruguay and UTC/GMT (Londres): -3 hours
Daylight saving time (DST): -1 hour (from Sunday, October, 6th, 2013 until Sunday, March, 9th, 2014)
The international area code for calls from abroad for Uruguay is : +598.
Voltage in Uruguay: 220 V.
Websites of Uruguay end usually with .uy
Welcome to Uruguay, a small raw gem on the tourist map, with a lot of history, unequalled natural beauty, magnificent coastlines, extremely friendly people and a capital city with many attractions!
This country is located in a privileged setting, surrounded by the enormous territories of Argentina and Brazil, giant rivers and the Atlantic Ocean.
Half of the 3 million inhabitants of Uruguay live in Montevideo, the country’s capital. However, did you also know that the rest of the country is about the size of England? It has a beautiful coast with white sand, dunes, large waves ideal for surfers, small attractive fishermen’s villages, places to do whale-watching in the ocean etc.
In the country’s interior you will find hot water springs, hundreds of rivers and lakes, beautiful landscapes with hills and meadows, allowing for all kinds of adventure sports. Last but not least, Uruguay has Latin America’s largest casino in Punta del Este, the beach resort that annually (in January and February) attracts the world’s jet-set community.
Uruguay is also referred to as Latin America’s Switzerland. However, did you also know that this is not only due to its financial and banking system, but also to the tranquility of its people, their high cultural and educational level, the security and the beauty of the country’s nature?
Instead of hot Swiss chocolate milk, people will be drinking Mate, the national drink, a kind of herbal tea to de drunk with a metal straw.
Painted birds: the name Uruguay has its origin in the Guaraní language and has several translations such as “River where the bird lives”, “river of painted birds”, “river of shells”, “river with many bends”. However, did you also know that the country is really called “Oriental Republic of Uruguay”? That’s why many Uruguayans also refer to themselves as “Orientals”, even though geographically that is not entirely the case…
The gaucho is an Argentine figure. However, did you also know that he has at least the same importance in Brasil and Uruguay?
The gaucho is intimately linked to the birth of the nation. His values and sense of liberty were a determining factor in the fight for Uruguayan independence. Nobody does farm work with cattle better than the gaucho.
The mate drink is the gaucho’s companion wherever he goes. It is an ancient Guaraní drink.
Uruguay also has a famous carnival. However, did you also know that it supposedly has the world’s longest carnival with its 40 days of duration? During the carnival, various groups march in the streets: parodians, “murgas”, humorists, “revistas”, “comparsas”.
Uruguay attaches a lot of importance to carnival and the origins are European and African. During carnival in the times of the Spanish colony, African slaves covered themselves with robes of vivid colors and walked through the streets toward the city walls of Montevideo, where they were allowed to sing and dance. The “Candombe” is derived from African rhythms performed by the Negro slaves of the colony.
Uruguay was the first football (Soccer) world champion ever. But did you also know that Uruguay won the world championship once more in 1950 in the enormous Maracaná stadium, in Brazil, where Uruguay won a historic match against Brazil 2:1? This mythical match is referred to as the Maracanazo and is part of the national myth of Uruguay.
www.spanishcourses.info was invited to visit the Argentinean State-Secretary of Tourism on April 6, 2006.
We interchanged experiences regarding to the Spanish langue school scenery in Argentina and decided to work together in the future to promote the Spanish langue schools of Argentina.
Uruguay is the second-smallest country in South America and the landscape features mostly rolling plains and low hills (cuchilla) with a fertile coastal lowland; most of it grassland, ideal for cattle and sheep raising. The highest point in the country is the Cerro Catedral at 514 m. To the southwest is the Rio de la Plata (Silver River), the estuary of the Uruguay River that forms the western border, and the Parana River, that does not run through Uruguay itself. The only other major river is the Rio Negro and several lagunes are found along the Atlantic coast.
The climate in Uruguay is temperate, but fairly warm as freezing temperatures are almost unknown. The predominantly flat landscape is also somewhat vulnerable to rapid changes from weather fronts, as well as to the pampero, a chilly and occasionally violent wind blowing north from the pampas plains in Argentina.
... the pure white sand of its beaches, the dunes alternating with creeks and its small bays with peaceful waters. - Spanish is the only language spoken in Uruguay, althought, some people speak Portunol, or Brazilero that is a Portuguese-Spanish mix on the Brazilian frontier.
Intresting websites related to Uruguay
Uruguay - Hotels, transfers, car rental, tours, and more: Beaches and cattle ranches are among Uruguay's main attractions.
Eco Tourism: El Ceibo is a typical, South American sheep and cattle ranch set in farmland on the plains of Uruguay. Activities at the ranch include: country walks, rides in a horse-drawn cart, horse-riding, fishing - and even milking a cow.
Estancia La Paz is a good example of rural-historic tourism in the Colony La Paz, Province of Paysandú: Horseback riding, exploring remote landscapes and enjoying nature.
General information on Uruguay, history, geography, local plants, architecture and Uruguayan cinema (Page in Spanish only)
National Secretary of Tourism and Sports
Official site of the Soccer Association of Uruguay
Ministry of Environment Uruguay
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