Trip Start Mar 11, 2010
59Trip End Jul 31, 2010
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Before reading on you may want to go back to the previous entry which I have updated with text and pics.
Whilst Punta is no doubt the top destination for summer fun, the whole of the Atlantic coast is lined by never-ending beaches interspersed by a range of cute and less-so villages. One such village is Cabo Polonio. Whilst I had heard about it from Catherine, it is not well known by international tourists and thus seldom in travel books.
It is not surprising either. After having navigated around Punta with the very efficient bus system I thought I would try my hand to get up there
Day two – ah the joys of having your own wheels! Picked up a small Fiat Polio from the local AVIS branch and headed straight up the coast. As I now had my own dedicated transportation, I also decide to stop in the various little villages - some cute and peaceful, others not so. Of the ones I saw, I would definitely suggest Jose Ignacio and La Pedrera, either to escape the crowds (which I did not witness) of Punta, or for something a bit more romantic (same ;-). Anyhow, after 180km and just over 2 hours of driving, I reach the 4x4 station which will take me to this mysterious Cabo Polonio.
What a place this Cabo Polonio! Basically a hippie settlement located on a small peninsula, it is worlds apart from the typical coastal villages
Beyond the lighthouse are three small island populated during part of the year with seal colonies (see the many black dots in the photo) to which the government has forbidden boat access since last year – shame but probably a good thing! There are of course beaches on either side of the peninsula but what makes them special is the vast sand dunes in the background – one could think they were in a desert.
In the evening, the lack of electricity makes this an even more special place as inhabitants travel with lanterns and the small houses light up with the glow of many candles. Unfortunately I was not able to stay and witness this, but would definitely come back for a night or two.
Instead I headed back to Punta via the more inland route. For those who ask what Uruguay might look like other than its beaches… have a look at the last photo – cows, cows, cows, eating away in fields dotted by palm trees – how curious!