Punta del Este is probably our best known seaside resort, an hour and a half drive from Montevideo. You can also get there by plane or boat but usually only people coming from Argentina will do this, Uruguayans just drive. It gets really fancy and expensive in the summer, with lots of celebrities visiting from all over the world. The beaches are beautiful and the city itself is really pretty. The main reason why so many people visit, besides beauty, is probably safety. Downtown Punta del Este, also known as Gorlero, is full of really young kids playing video games until their parents come to get them at around 3 in the morning. At that time hundreds of teenagers will be hitchhiking to La Barra, where most of the dance clubs for youngsters are. La Barra is separated from Punta del Este by these two very particular bridges.
There are many things to see and do here, but some of them are a must-see. The sculpture with the fingers on the Brava beach, Casapueblo Hotel and the bridges of La Barra are the most typical attractions. Punta del Este is in Uruguay but sometimes people think it is in Argentina because most of the tourists that can afford it in the summer are from Buenos Aires.
Another option, and a cheaper one is Piriápolis. This is a smaller city and it has our tallest hills: Cerro Pan de Azúcar and Cerro San Antonio (I don’t think you can call them mountains they are about 500 meters tall max). You can hike Cerro Pan de Azúcar and get inside the cross that stands on the top.
To Cerro San Antonio you can go up by car or by using the chair lifts that you can see in the following picture.
This is the view of Piriápolis from up there.
There are many other seaside resorts with beautiful beaches in Maldonado, such as Cuchilla Alta, Playa Hermosa, Punta Colorada, etc but I can’t cover them all so I went for these two. In most places with water here you can see people fishing, if you like fishing Uruguay is a good place for that year round.
You can ask questions about the other ones if you have any.