Punta del Este, perhaps the most expensive destination in Uruguay, is considered to be the “Hamptons of South America” and a favorite destination of celebrities. Punta del Este is where 20 miles of pristine beaches meet culture, wildlife and botanical gardens. Add in the nightlife and you have the perfect getaway between mid-December through mid-March for warm temperatures.
Beaches of Punte del Este
Looking for beautiful, sandy beaches? Look no further than Punta del Este. The Mansa and The Brava are popular and each offers a unique experience. On the East side, The Mansa’s calm and peaceful waters are perfect for families with children. The West side of the peninsula is The Brava, known for its waves and beckons surfers to ride choice swells. Also found on The Brava side is “La Mano”. “The Hand” that emerges from the sand of Brava Beach was designed and built in February 1982 by Mario Irrazábal, a Chilean artist.
Find inspiration in several museums and botanical gardens in Punte del Este. The Museo-Taller de Casapueblo was once the home of celebrated Uruguayan artist Carlos Paez Vilaro. This eye-catching seaside Mediterranean-style structure is today a modern art museum.
Visit the Fundacion Pablo Atchugarry and you’ll discover a beautiful park with sculptures by the Uruguayan artist Pablo Atchugarry and other international artists. It also has a building with rotative exhibitions and two stages with free events.
Browse the Ralli Museums and view the works of living Latin-American Artists. The Ralli was specially designed and planned to house a museum. It also boasts one of the most important collections of Latin American art in the world, as well as works by renowned European artists.
Botanical Gardens and Wildlife
To see one of the world’s largest sea-lion colonies, board a boat from Punta del Este’s yacht harbor for the 15-minute trip to Isla de Lobos. There you’ll find excellent sandy beaches, a couple of restaurants and the ruins of Baterías de Santa Ana, an 18th-century fortification.
Stroll the Arboretum Lussich and experience the gardens where there was once only sand dunes and rocks. Beginning in 1897 and for 30 years thereafter, Lussich enriched the site with plant and tree species from around the world. Today the park is a 475-acre area and has 400 exotic plants and is also one of the largest artificial forest reserves.
After a busy day of visiting the local museums and cultural sites, you’ll want to hit the world-famous nightlife. The Conrad Resort & Casino features Las Vegas-style reviews and other music, dance, and magic shows — sometimes around the torch-lit swimming pools. The enormous 24-hour casino has 75 tables playing baccarat, roulette, blackjack, poker, dice, and a fortune wheel and 550 slot machines. For many visitors, the Conrad Resort & Casino defines nightlife in Punta with its casino and a year-round slate of Las Vegas–style shows by some of the biggest stars in Latin entertainment. Even if you don’t recognize the names, taking in a performance at the area’s largest hotel is de rigueur. The hotel also has one of the city’s best clubs on its premises, Ovo, which attracts top international DJs.
Moby Dick, Punta del Este’s most classic and popular pub sits right across from the city’s port. Moby Dick is open year-round and is near the Yacht Harbor. You can find spirits of all varieties as well as people dancing the night away.
Located on the Brava Beach, The Club home to theme parties that transcend throughout the season. This disco/bar offers different music floors, several bars, VIP areas and a terrace facing the sea. The Club is open every night during high season (15 December – 28 February) from 10 pm to the sunrise
Punte del Este is the perfect escape during the States’ winter to basque in the sun and explore a South American paradise filled with adventure and relaxation. So, are you already planning your trip? Want more options in South America? Try these luxury hotels in Bolivia.