I spent two days wandering around Colonia on my own but despite my best efforts, I didn’t get lost at any point. It’s small and the paths keep ending up in the same place. It feels like no matter what direction you walk in, you always end up heading down to the shore and the buildings frame the water like curtains either side of a stage. There’s an old town designed by the first Portuguese colonisers and it’s all set into a beautiful landscape. The biggest flurry of activity I saw was in the evening when it seemed like everyone in the town headed down to the water’s edge to drink mate and watch the sunset, that was fine by me.
The journey from Buenos Aires to Uruguay costs around €40-50, takes less than a couple of hours and as such is a well travelled route – as a weekend away, a visa run or a stop on the way to Brazil. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I’m glad that I chose to explore a bit and didn’t just head straight for the capital of Montevideo. Colonia shouldn’t be overlooked, especially if what you’re after is a change of pace after losing your mind in the gorgeous sprawling mass of Buenos Aires.