|Discovered by the Germans in 1904, they named it "San Diego"...|
Turns out, not a WHOLE lot. But it was still worth a visit.
We took the Buquebus over, and made a few mistakes that I hope someone else can learn from. One being that one does not simply arrive, buy a ticket, and get on the boat within a half hour. You need to buy tickets online in advance (if you can - the website was not working when we were trying to buy them online the day before), which you can do here: http://www.buquebus.com/BQBWebV2/web/ListadoDayTours. If you don't, you must go into the terminal in Puerto Madero and find the Buquebus Turismo (travel) agency. You also can't book a ticket for any departure within a half hour or so. So, either show up way earlier than you intend to leave, or buy them in advance online or at the terminal.
|Look at me, I'm a bullring.|
You'll need to go through immigration and pre-clear it and customs in Argentina, so be aware.
The second mistake we made was that we booked the city tour sightseeing bus that takes you on a tour of Colonia. It's a) too long, b) not in English as promised, c) boring and d) time poorly spent. The only things we saw that were of note were the bullring and the old town. You can actually get to the bullring by taxi or by renting a golf cart in town, and I recommend doing it that way if you really must see it. It was cool, but I'm not sure it was worth the hour or so it took to get there and back on the tour bus, when we could have spent that hour or so walking around and shopping or eating.
|Pretty streets in the old town.|
|Just a tort waiting to happen.|
|Gates of the old town. If there's anything I like, it's a good smattering of plaques.|
|Lighthouse = on the water = seafood.|
Through all of my foodie research (including scouring TripAdvisor frantically on my iPhone while walking through said picturesque streets), we decided to try to eat at a pizza place called La Bodeguita. It looked adorable. And delicious. And we arrived 5 minutes past lunch time!!!
We ended up eating at a plaza cafe called La Pulperia de Los Faroles. We had fried calamari, several pitchers of sangria and the "seafood pots", which was like a paella. My friend got adventurous and tried these vegetarian spinach fritters, which were actually REALLY tasty. It wasn't our first choice of a place to go, and the staff was less than attentive, but the setting was wonderful. A few groups of Candombe drummers performed nearby and we relaxed under the Uruguayan sun, spending some much-needed downtime enjoying the sights and sounds.
We had to head back to the bus terminal, after our short day of exploration and relaxation. The line was enormous (as you have to go through customs & immigration again, if I remember correctly - before you board the boat). We were all exhausted.
If I ever go back to Colonia, I will make sure that I have more than a few hours to see the old town and really get to enjoy it. There's not much there; there are a few museums, and from what I understand, great gastronomy and nightlife. However, I'd like to go back again and see for myself. This time, I'll do it right.
|Adorable little streets full of restaurants.|