First thing you need to know before you come to Buenos Aires as a foreigner is the time you are permitted to stay as a tourist. Each country has their own rules and restrictions so its important to keep that in mind. For example, if you’re a citizen of the United States like me you have 90 days before you need to leave Argentina if you want to prolong your stay (Read more about reciprocity for Americans here). How do can you accomplish this? It’s easy if you take a short trip to Uruguay!
Here are a few facts and tips to help you plan your trip:
1. Uruguay is the second-smallest nation in South America, with approximately 176,000 sq kilometers (68,000 sq miles) bordering Argentina and Brazil.
2. Transportation to Uruguay: The best and quickest way to travel from Buenos Aires to Colonia or Montevideo in Uruguay is by ferry. However, there are buses that travel to both cities in Uruguay which may be more cost effective but take more time.
3. Ferries: There are two main ferry companies that take you from Buenos Aires to Uruguay: Buquebus and Colonia Express. If you want to go to Montevideo there is a direct ferry via Buquebus and Colonia Express has a ferry-bus package available, prices vary. It’s cheaper and less stressful to pay for a ferry ticket at one of their offices in Buenos Aires rather than using their websites. For more detailed information about these ferry companies check out this blog
4. Colonia: A quint, historic town that reminds you of a mini-Havanna. Colorful buildings, vintage cars, cobblestone streets are among some of the authentic features this city provides. For visitors, it’s worth at least a day-trip but not more than a few days at maximum.
5. Montevideo: The capital of Uruguay, with more than half the country’s population living there. Similar to Colonia, its recommended to stay a few days to see all the sites including the parilla (bbq) market, Plaza Independencia and at least a few of its 50 plus museums ranging in topics like gauchos, geology and maritime history.
6. Lodging: There are a number of hostels and hotels to choose from in both Colonia and Montevideo at a reasonable price. Check out TripAdvisor or one of the hostel websites for more information: