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Colonia, a Day Out of the City

I have to say, this day tour surprised me the most – in a good way. I planned this tour as no one in our office had experienced it and I thought it’d be fun to visit another country along the way. We began by heading through customs; one for Uruguay and one for Argentina. With the stamp to Uruguay in our passports we waited in line for the massive ferry to take us to Colonia. I wish I had brought a book and a jacket on the ferry, but Molly and I found ways to pass the time. After about 10 minutes on the hour ferry ride, a huge shopping center in the middle of the ferry opened up. We perused the aisles of perfume, chocolate, and many random items for sale. Another time I wish I had cash on me as the coffee and food accepted only cash.

Cobblestone streets of Colonia, Uruguay
Cobblestone streets of Colonia, Uruguay (Franny Friesz)

When we reached Colonia, we set out to do another round of passport stamps and lines to get into Uruguay. We met our guide and set out on our adventure in Colonia. This little city had juxtaposed elements of Spanish and Portuguese that were fascinating. You could see the two influences literally clashing in the streets and in the buildings. The Spanish and Portuguese fought over this little town for years and you could see why. It was in a perfect position politically and in quite a beautiful setting. I wish we had more time to stay in Colonia and would have enjoyed a night there, even. It was much more these two Montana girls’ pace and had as much history as a European town.  After learning a lot from our guide, wandering the neighborhoods of Colonia, and a visit to the beach, Molly and I had time to explore on our own. The streets were easy to navigate and we found lots of shops, a market, and a restaurant to enjoy. We had a set time to meet our guide after our lunch and time to explore and he took us back to the ferry. We said our goodbyes to Uruguay and headed back to the big city to finish our stay.

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