Montevideo - Facts for the traveller, when to go, events
Facts for the traveller for Montevideo
When to Go to Montevideo
Uruguay's major tourist attraction is its beaches, so most visitors come in summer (Dec-Feb), with the majority being Argentines or Brazilians on vacation. Montevideo's urban attractions are open year-round and the climate remains temperate and mild, even in winter. The heat can be smothering along the Río Uruguay in summer, but the interior hill country offers slightly cooler conditions, especially at night.
For those who can't make it to the mayhem of Rio's most famous of Carnivals, Montevideo's Carnaval de Uruguay is a showpiece of Uruguay's proud arts community. The opening parade takes place on the Monday and Tuesday preceding Ash Wednesday in February, giving Montevideo's often-staid reputation a battering as a brace of drummers and costumed revelers advance along its streets. The festival runs unabated for another 40 days, making it by far Uruguay's biggest party and popular celebration.
Also popular are the La Semana Criolla festivities during Semana Santa or Holy Week (Easter), which take place at the Parque Prado, north of downtown. Because Uruguay is a secular country, official Holy Week celebrations are more nationalistic than religious. Therefore, the festivities center on traditional activities like asados (barbecues), folk music and displays of gaucho skills such as horse-breaking and cowboy stunt riding. During July there's the International Festival of Children's Cinema, a godsend for anyone traveling with children.