Sun, Oct 29 – Punta del Este, Uruguay was one of those places that travel writers would describe as “sleepy.” With a population just under 10,000, This was just a sleepy little town until the news got out. Punta del Este began to be referred to as the Hamptons of South America. It has a gorgeous coast and a safe and moneyed port city: perfect for a vacation. It's the preferred getaway for wealthy Uruguayans and Argentines and many have second homes here. The population swells with these part-time residents and sun-seeking vacationers during the winter, when quiet Punta del Este cedes to its alter ego of glitzy, glamorous resort town.
The first Europeans to set foot in what is now Punta del Este were the Spanish at the beginning of the 16th century. However, the colonization of the area actually began around the end of the 18th century due to Portuguese expansion. Punta del Este and its surroundings area at the end of the 19th century were just miles of sand and dunes, but in 1896 Antonio Lussich bought 4,447 acres of uninhabited land and there he started a botanical garden, and planted trees and plants from all over the world. Later the trees started to spread on their own, and now the area is full of mostly Pines, Eucalyptus, Acacias and various species of bushes.
This is our last stop before we disembark in Rio, and we are not into beaches when the temperature is in the high 60s - give me a good 90 degrees and I'm for a great beach, but today was not one of those days. We decided that we would be far ahead of the game if we just stayed on board and got our laundry done - the laundry room has 4 washers and dryers, so we decided this would be our best bet. So, no comments on this town. We did the laundry, got some downsizing done and things resorted so that we could just live out of one suitcase when we got to the Amazon. We also downsized a lot of papers - it is amazing the amount of paper you collect on a ship - we took photos of all of our daily schedules and also of all of my recipe cards I collected from the Test Kitchen - the ones I hadn't written on I returned back to the Test Kitchen since she was running out of them.
All in all it was a nice relaxing day.