Uruguay Vacations: A Culinary and Cultural Expedition Uncover South America

Uruguay Tour Culture & Gastronomy Expedition

15 Days Similar tours from £6424

    Cultural Odyssey in Uruguay

    From exclusive cooking classes with local chefs to unique activities with residents, experience Uruguay in a way few travellers do. 

    Explore Colonia's historic charm while participating in a traditional mate tasting and learning the art of crafting this beloved beverage. Venture into the countryside for hands-on cooking classes with passionate chefs, where you'll master authentic Uruguayan dishes using fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Engage in Montevideo's cultural scene with visits to local markets, artisanal crafts workshops, and folk music performances.

    This tour promises more than a glimpse of Uruguay's allure; it offers a profound exploration of its essence, beckoning you to immerse yourself in its rich tapestry of sights, sounds, and tastes.


    Culture, Gastronomy & Local traditions

    Tour Highlights

    → Culinary Delights: Indulge in gastronomic experiences ranging from traditional three-course meals to cooking classes with local chefs.

    → Winery Tours: Embark on guided tours of local wineries, where you'll learn about the art of winemaking and olive oil production.

    → Outdoor Adventures: Experience the natural beauty of Uruguay through activities like scenic hikes, sunset cruises, horseback rides, and kayaking adventures. 

    → Artistic Exploration: Discover Uruguay's vibrant art scene with visits to museums, sculpture parks, and private studios.

     Historic Walking Tours: Explore UNESCO World Heritage sites and iconic landmarks.

    Tour Itinerary and Essentials

    • Detailed Itinerary Show All

      • Day 1 Discovering Colonia: A Historic Feast for the Senses

        Step off the boat at Colonia Port and be warmly welcomed by your guide, who will accompany you to your hotel nestled within the enchanting old town. Settle in and prepare for an unforgettable culinary journey at Las Liebres Restaurante Hotel, where a delectable three-course meal awaits. From homemade bread with olive oil to mouthwatering mains and decadent desserts, savour the flavours of Uruguay accompanied by refreshing drinks.

        After lunch, immerse yourself in the rich history of Colonia del Sacramento on a guided half-day walking tour. Explore the UNESCO World Heritage site as you wander along cobblestone streets lined with stories of the past. Admire iconic landmarks like the city gate and church, and discover hidden gems around every corner. Don't miss the chance to experience a traditional mate tasting, a quintessential part of Uruguayan culture. With each sip, you'll feel closer to the heart and soul of this charming city, making memories to last a lifetime.

        Overnight: Charco Hotel
        Meal Plan: Lunch

      • Day 2 Colonia Culinary Odyssey: Cheese, Wine, and Delights

        Embark on a private tour filled with sensory delights as we uncover the culinary treasures of Colonia. Our journey begins with a transfer to Bodega el Quinton, where you'll immerse yourself in the beauty of vineyards and olive plantations. Enjoy a guided tour of the grounds, learning about the intricacies of winemaking and olive oil production. Indulge in a tasting session, savouring the rich flavours of locally produced wines and olive oils that reflect the terroir of the region.

        Next, we'll venture to La Vigna Cheese Farm, where you'll discover the artistry behind the production of local cheeses. Guided by the knowledgeable "Cheese Architect," delve into the process of cheese-making and sample a selection of the finest varieties crafted with passion and expertise. Owners Agustin and Lucila have cultivated a haven of sustainability and organic production, ensuring each cheese is a testament to quality and innovation.

        As the day unfolds, satisfy your taste buds with an optional cheese-tasting lunch at La Vigna, where each bite is a symphony of flavours. 

        Overnight: Charco Hotel
        Meal Plan: Breakfast

      • Day 3 Exploring Jesuit History and Carmelo's Winemaking Tradition

        Our adventure begins at "Calera de las Huerfanas," where the remnants of a Jesuit-run estancia provide insight into Uruguay's colonial past. Discover the self-sustaining community that once thrived here, including a cathedral, mills, and workshops, where Jesuits, slaves, and indigenous inhabitants toiled to supply towns across the region with essential goods.

        Learn how the Jesuits pioneered vine cultivation in Uruguay, laying the foundation for the country's burgeoning wine industry. Then, venture to two local wineries, Bodega Cordano and Bodega El Legado, to taste the fruits of this rich heritage.

        At Bodega Cordano, a charming family-owned winery, journey through the vineyards and production areas before sampling three of their finest wines. Experience the warmth of Uruguayan hospitality as you visit the vintage grocery shop, "Almacén de la Capilla," founded in 1855, and savour the flavours of tradition.

        Continue your exploration at Bodega El Legado, where the Marzuca family's passion for winemaking shines through in every bottle. Tour the vineyards, wine cellar, and production area, led by the owners themselves, and discover their unique approach to winemaking. Indulge in a tasting of three exquisite wines, expertly paired with local cheeses, salamis, and olives, before sitting down to a sumptuous lunch—a fitting end to a day filled with history, culture, and gastronomy.

        Overnight: Finca Narbona
        Meal Plan: Breakfast & Lunch

      • Day 4 Vineyard Picnic and Sunset Cruise on the Rio de la Plata

        Start your day with a hearty breakfast, preparing you for the adventures ahead. Then, indulge in a unique experience—a picnic amidst the picturesque vineyards. Relax in the tranquillity of nature, surrounded by lush greenery and the finest meats.

        In the afternoon, enjoy a private transfer from your hotel to Puerto Camacho, where your Rio de la Plata Sunset Cruise awaits. Board a classic boat at the secluded marina of Club del Faro and set sail through the enchanting islands of the Delta, where the waters of Rio de la Plata and Rio Uruguay converge. Learn about the legends of the Uruguayan coasts and its shipwrecks as you glide along the waterways.

        Toast to the mesmerising sunset, a breathtaking spectacle marking the end of another day in paradise. Savour a typical picada of cold cuts, accompanied by national beer and wine, as you soak in the beauty of the surroundings.

        Overnight: Finca Narbona
        Meal Plan: Breakfast & Lunch

      • Day 5 Montevideo Exploration and Cultural Immersion

        Dive deep into Montevideo’s city's historic centre with a captivating walking tour led by your local guide. Begin at the lively Port Market, known for its bustling atmosphere and an array of restaurants offering mouthwatering Asado Grills—a perfect lunch spot.

        Continue your exploration as you meander through Matriz Square, home to the majestic Cathedral of Montevideo and the historic Cabildo. Stroll along the Sarandi pedestrian area, immersing yourself in the city's vibrant ambience before reaching Independence Square. Here, delve into the rich history of iconic landmarks such as the historic Palacio Salvo and the mausoleum of national hero José Artigas.

        Next, choose two museums to visit from a selection including the MAPI – Museum of Pre-Columbian and Indigenous Art, the Torres Garcia Museum, and the Gurvich Museum (please coordinate in advance based on opening hours).

        Conclude your tour with a fascinating visit to the studio of Lobo Nuñez, a renowned Afro-Uruguayan drums luthier and percussionist. Delve into the roots of Carnival in Uruguay dating back to 1760, as slaves were granted the freedom to celebrate once a year. This cultural encounter offers a unique glimpse into the world of Uruguayan drums, providing insider access to a cherished aspect of local heritage.

        Overnight: Alma Histórica Boutique Hotel
        Meal Plan: Breakfast

      • Day 6 Montevideo's Modern Charms and Artisanal Delights

        Fuel up with breakfast for a day of exploration in Montevideo's contemporary landscape. Discover the evolution of the city since the 19th century as you explore La Ciudad Nueva (the new city), known for its wide streets and striking architecture.

        Start at Plaza Independencia and stroll along the iconic 18 de Julio Avenue to Plaza Fabini, where you'll marvel at José Belloni's historic sculpture. Explore Ciudad Abierta (the open city), home to landmarks like Estadio Centenario and the Carriage Monument.

        Choose from a selection of cultural sites to visit, including the Legislative Palace or Mercado Agricola, for a tailored experience.

        Later, immerse yourself in the artistry of Luis Alberto Gutierrez, a UNESCO-recognized leather sculptor, and participate in crafting a Gaucho sculpture.

        In the afternoon, meet Manuel Filgueira, owner of "Los Nadies" boutique winery, to learn about his passion for winemaking and sample his exquisite wines. Conclude the day with a dinner shared with Manuel and his family, uncovering the secrets behind his craft.

        Overnight: Alma Histórica Boutique Hotel
        Meal Plan: Breakfast & Dinner

      • Day 7 Olive Oil Adventure in Pueblo Eden

        Start your day with a delicious breakfast before embarking on a scenic journey from Montevideo to Sacromonte in Pueblo Eden. Relax and enjoy the private transfer, soaking in the beauty of the Uruguayan countryside along the way.

        En route, immerse yourself in the world of olive oil production with a visit to Olivos de las Animas. Explore the olive plantations and learn about the meticulous process of crafting extra virgin olive oil. Indulge in a tasting session, savouring the rich flavours of this liquid gold, before delighting in an exclusive lunch hosted by our friend Martin in his home.

        Overnight: Sacromonte Hotel
        Meal Plan: Breakfast & Lunch

      • Day 8 Scenic Hike and Winery Lunch in Pueblo Edén

        Embark on a private drive to Pueblo Edén, where your journey through picturesque landscapes begins.

        Explore the charming town of Pueblo Edén, taking in the sights of the quaint chapel and bustling main square. Then, lace up your hiking boots as we set out on a scenic hike along trails frequented by locals.

        Follow the path through rolling hills, passing through countryside gates, native forests, and grazing pastures dotted with cows and sheep. Traverse alongside a gentle stream, soaking in the tranquillity of the natural surroundings.

        After approximately 8 kilometres of exploration, conclude your hike and make your way to Viña Eden winery for a well-deserved lunch. Indulge in a feast for the senses as you dine overlooking the vineyards, savouring the flavours of Uruguay's finest wines.

        Overnight: Sacromonte Hotel
        Meal Plan: Breakfast

      • Day 9 Coastal Exploration and Wine-Tasting Adventure

        Start your day with a scenic journey from Jose Ignacio to Pueblo Edén with your private guide.

        En route, immerse yourself in the world of fine wines with a stop at Bodega Altos de la Ballena. This family-run winery, nestled on the rocky outcrops of Punta Ballena offers a premium tasting experience. Sample exceptional wines crafted with a blend of hillside climate and Atlantic Ocean freshness before continuing your journey.

        Next, prepare to be captivated by the artistic masterpiece of "Casapueblo," designed by renowned Uruguayan artist Carlos Paez Vilaró. Perched on the hillside overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, this iconic property is a sight to behold.

        Continue your exploration as you visit the main attractions of Punta del Este, including the bustling marina and port, often frequented by a colony of sea lions. Cross the undulating bridge of La Barra and explore local towns known for their antique shops and charming stores.

        Overnight: Luz Culinary Wine Lodge
        Meal Plan: Breakfast

      • Day 10 Biking Adventure and Culinary Delights in Garzón

        Join your guide for an exhilarating Bike Ride through Garzón, often likened to "The Uruguayan Tuscany”.

        Setting off from the traditional "Pulperia" of Garzón, pedal your way to the quaint town itself. Explore its charming main square, historic chapel, and nostalgic train station, immersing yourself in the tranquillity of the surroundings.

        Continue your journey to Garzón Winery, nestled atop a rocky outcrop, offering breathtaking vistas of vineyards cascading down the hillside. Delight in a tasting session, savouring the exceptional grapes cultivated in mineral-rich, well-draining soils.

        Following the tasting, indulge in a hands-on Cooking Class led by the winery's talented restaurant team. Begin with a 15-minute welcome on the terrace of Bodega Garzón, gaining insight into the project's ethos. Then, participate in a culinary adventure with the chef at the Fuegos patio, learning to craft delicious dishes using locally sourced ingredients. Conclude your experience with a delectable lunch paired with wines from the Reserva and Single Vineyard lines as you relish the flavours of your creations.

        Overnight: Luz Culinary Wine Lodge
        Meal Plan: Breakfast & Lunch

      • Day 11 Traditional "Día de Campo" at Estancia La Soleada

        Begin your day with a visit to Estancia La Soleada, a cherished family-owned estate where Rebeca's family has tended to the land for generations, raising cattle and horses. Embark on a scenic hike through the rolling hills, soaking in the panoramic views of the surrounding region.

        After working up an appetite, gather for a traditional lunch prepared with love by the Estancia's residents. Indulge in a feast of empanadas, savouring the flavours of traditional parrilla featuring an array of beef, sausage, black sausage, and other specialities, accompanied by fresh vegetables sourced from the estate's gardens.

        Immerse yourself in the local culture as you enjoy a family music performance, showcasing the rich musical heritage of the countryside. Conclude your day with a sweet treat as you sample Rebeca's homemade pastries and learn about the rhythms of rural life.

        Overnight: Bahía Vik
        Meal Plan: Breakfast & Lunch

      • Day 12 Adventure to Anastasio Lagoon by Bike and Kayak

        Get ready for an exhilarating day as we embark on a bike ride and kayak journey to the breathtaking Anastasio Lagoon.

        Our adventure starts with a scenic bike ride along rural trails, passing by picturesque estancias and tranquil countryside landscapes. Feel the fresh air against your skin as we pedal our way to the Anastasio Stream, our starting point for the kayaking adventure.

        Hop into your kayak and paddle your way through the serene waters of the stream, heading towards the enchanting Anastasio Lagoon. This pristine lagoon is a haven for birdwatchers, boasting a diverse array of avian species, including flamingos, swans, herons, and storks. As you glide through the tranquil waters, marvel at the natural beauty surrounding you.

        Pause for a traditional picnic lunch amidst the tranquillity of the lagoon, savouring delicious local fare while soaking in the peaceful ambience.

        After lunch, we'll hop back on our bikes and pedal our way back to Jose Ignacio, where a transfer will be available for those who prefer. Reflect on the day's adventures and cherish the memories created during our exploration of this stunning natural oasis.

        Overnight: Bahía Vik
        Meal Plan: Breakfast & Lunch

      • Day 13 Artistic Exploration at MACA & Atchugarry Foundation Sculpture Park

        Start your day with a satisfying breakfast before embarking on an artistic journey to the MACA (Museo Atchugarry Contemporáneo) and Atchugarry Foundation Sculpture Park. 

        Founded by renowned artist Pablo Atchugarry in 2007, the Atchugarry Foundation aims to make art accessible to all. Pablo, celebrated for his mastery of marble, has dedicated considerable efforts to promote Uruguayan art on the global stage.

        In January 2022, Pablo inaugurated the MACA museum, a remarkable architectural marvel considered a work of art in itself. This stunning structure hosts both permanent and temporary exhibitions, showcasing the brilliance of contemporary art.

        Our tour offers exclusive access, including a private visit to Pablo's personal studio and a guided tour of the premises. Delve into the world of art with insights from specialists, gaining a deeper understanding of Pablo's creative process and his contributions to the art world.

        Overnight: Bahía Vik
        Meal Plan: Breakfast

      • Day 14 Sunset Horseback Ride and Dinner under the Stars

        Indulge in a day of leisure at Bahia Vik, where you can immerse yourself in luxury and natural beauty. Whether you choose to lounge by the pool, stroll along the pristine beach, or venture out to explore the charming town of Jose Ignacio, the day is yours to enjoy to the fullest.

        As the sun begins its descent, embark on a horseback ride through the picturesque countryside. Experience the serene beauty of the landscape as you ride towards a tranquil lagoon, bathed in the warm hues of the setting sun.

        Arriving at the lagoon, marvel at the breathtaking vista as the sky transforms into a canvas of vibrant colours. Gather around the crackling fire pits for an unforgettable alfresco dinner under the starlit sky.

        Learn the art of preparing an authentic Uruguayan asado (barbecue) as you join in the camaraderie of meal preparation with your hosts. Savour the flavours of grilled specialities paired with fine wines, indulging in the timeless tradition of sharing a meal by the fire.

        Immerse yourself in the magic of the moment, surrounded by the beauty of Uruguay's countryside and the warmth of good company.

        Overnight: Bahía Vik
        Meal Plan: Breakfast

      • Day 15 Farewell Transfer to Montevideo

        Bid farewell to the picturesque landscapes of José Ignacio as you embark on a private transfer back to Montevideo, marking the end of your memorable tour through Uruguay.

    • What's Included

      • 14 nights' accommodation 
      • Private ground transportation 
      • Meals as defined in the itinerary
      • Local English-speaking tour guide
      • Domestic flights
      • Activities mentioned in the itinerary

      What's not included

      • International flights
      • Meals not listed in the itinerary
      • Tips and other discretionary expense


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