From Montevideo we took the bus back to Colonia to spend some time there. We'd decided that we'd take it relatively easy for these last few months and not rush from place to place, so although many people 'do' Colonia in a day trip, we choose to spend longer here and take advantage of its sleepy charm.
We thought it was a beautiful place. It is a UNESCO world heritage site, and is all cobbled streets, old buildings and pavement cafes.
There is hardly any traffic in the old town, so it is a peaceful place to wander around and take in at your leisure. They did have a couple of old carts and vintage cars hanging around which, though clearly just there as dressing, did look right at home.
Not that there is anything much here. Just a church, an old lighthouse, and the odd little museum, but really the thing to do is just admire the old buildings, sit outside one of the cafes and have a beer or three. Which is exactly what we did. In one we even found a friendly feline, which made a nice change from being followed around by dogs all the time.
In the evenings, we headed to the waterfront to watch the sunset which, although not spectacular like some, was still very pretty.
We were lucky that the weather was great, because that makes it nice to sit outside, and the old buildings and cobbles look their best when they are bathed in sunlight.
And the beauty of staying here longer and out of the peak season is that, whilst you get the occasional wave of tourists when the ferries come through, most of the time there are very few people around.
We weren't entirely on our own though. We bumped into a couple from the Plancius while we were in town, and at the hostel we joined them in the asado evening.
Travelling on our own most of the time is fine, but it is nice when the hostel has other people staying that you can chat to and swap stories with, and these evenings are great for that.
The Uruguayans also have a far more efficient way of arranging their barbecue, which is to burn the logs in a grate to the side of the grill, and just spread the coals underneath it when they are at the right stage for cooking. Avoids all of this burnt on the outside, raw in the middle issue, even if you need to add more fuel part way through.