Punta del Este Travel
It may be known as an oh-so-glamorous beach resort, but Punta del Este has plenty of surprises up its sleeve.
Punta del Este is renowned as one of South America’s most exclusive seaside getaways, with its powder-soft beaches, luxury hotels and parties that go all night long. But there’s more than meets the eye – from wineries to cheese dairies and day trips to nature reserves – meaning that your trip to Punta del Este will be so much more than a beach holiday.
One of the highlights of a Uruguay vacation is without doubt spending time on the beaches of Punta del Este, a pleasure playground cherished by well-heeled South Americans – and celebrities, too. There are high-end restaurants and nightclubs aplenty, but aside from the party lifestyle is a totally different face of Punta del Este that makes it well worth exploring for a few days.
There’s the peaceful, boho town of Garzon, where a slower pace of life can be glimpsed along with the work of local artists and chefs. Another intriguing place just outside of Punta del Este is the Lussich Arboretum, a vast botanical garden with hundreds of tree and plant species clutching the slopes of La Ballena, a beautiful, verdant haven in Uruguay. Then, of course, there are the famous sights like Casapueblo – the home and workshop of artist Carlos Páez Vilaró, an all-white façade overlooking the ocean – and La Mano de Punta del Este, a sculpture by Mario Irarrázabal that protrudes from the golden sands of Brava Beach. Once you’ve seen the sights, tasted the food and met the friendly locals, there’s nothing better than kicking back on the beach and watching the world go by.
Discover the art of cheese-making at this artisan dairy, established by Antonio Ferretti – ‘Nonno’. When he and his family migrated to Uruguay from Italy, Nonno poured his passion into making the best cheese in Uruguay. On a tour here, you can taste the finest varieties – including mascarpone and gorgonzola – delicious!
Sprawling for almost 200 hectares, the Lussich Arboretum is a pristine botanical garden in La Ballena, a beautiful place to take a stroll and learn about the native and exotic flora planted here. There’s also a museum dedicated to Antonio Lussich, the man who created this much-cherished park.
Discover the eco-focused agricultural project that is Agroland, where olive oil, honey, pecans and vines are sustainably produced across 10,000 acres. This is an innovative facility that you can tour on a day trip from Punta del Este, learning how eco-conscious measures are applied while admiring the beautiful scenery.