The central interior of Uruguay includes the departments of Cerro Largo, Durazno, Flores, Florida, Lavalleja and Treinta Y Tres. This region has rolling hills, cow country, lakes, history, a border with Brazil, and more—including lovely, quiet spots for a visit.
- 1 Cerro Colorado
- 2 Durazno
- 3 Florida
- 4 Fray Marcos
- 5 Melo
- 6 Minas
- 7 Río Branco
- 8 Treinta y Tres
- 9 Trinidad
- 10 Veinticinco de Agosto
- 11 Villa Serrana – idyllic, relaxing vacation town in the hills
- 1 Chamangá (near Durazno, in Flores department) - an area with numerous remains of Guarani Precolumbian settlements including rock temples, cemeteries and pictographs.
- 2 Grutas del Palacio (in Flores department) - A natural monument located in the northwest of the department of Flores in Uruguay, forty-six kilometres from Trinidad, the capital of the department, and it is situated on the ancient National Road N°3 surrounded by natural environment. Recognized by UNESCO, it is a stone monument consisting of natural caves that were used by the prehistoric inhabitants of Uruguay.
- 3 Cerro Arequita (near Minas, Lavalleja) - a famous hill with caves. Nearby is the Isla de Ombues which is the largest aggrupation of the giant Ombu tree in the world.
- 5 Quebrada de los Cuervos (near Treinta y Tres) - considered the most beautiful national park in Uruguay.
- 6 Rincón del Bonete (near Durazno) - A huge hydroelectric power station with a large artificial lake popular for fishing. It is possible to visit the interior of the station.
Most (but not all) bus routes begin or end in Montevideo. For buses that do start or end in Montevideo, you can find schedules at the Tres Cruces Bus Terminal website. For other buses, such as the Nossar line from Colonia to Trinidad and Durazno or the Tureste line from Maldonado to Treinta y Tres, you'll just have to ask around or look at individual bus companies' websites.
Highways crisscross the region, providing good connections with Montevideo and decent to good connections with other parts of the country. You can also drive from Brazil, crossing the bridge between Jaguarão and Río Branco.
Fly into Carrasco International Airport (MVD IATA) outside of Montevideo. If you're going to the eastern departments of Cerro Largo, Treinta y Tres, and Lavalleja, you can probably catch an intercity bus at the airport. Otherwise, take a bus to Tres Cruces terminal in Montevideo and get an intercity bus from there.
If you're trying to travel between two places that are more or less on a straight line from Montevideo, like Florida and Durazno or Treinta y Tres and Río Branco, buses should be frequent and convenient. Otherwise, you'll probably have to change buses, and in many cases the easiest way to get from one city to another may be to transfer in Montevideo.
Probably more convenient if you plan to explore the region in depth. Some rural attractions are not served by bus routes.
- Atlantic Coast – fantastic beaches ranging from glamorous Punta del Este to rustic Cabo Polonio
- Northern Interior – gaucho culture at its finest, as well as lively border towns like Salto and Rivera
- Rio de la Plata – from the capital city of Montevideo to the smaller historic towns of Colonia and Fray Bentos
- Rio Grande do Sul – cross the border at Río Branco/Jaguarão to start exploring Brazil's rich and varied culture and landscape