Catedral San Fernando, Maldonando.
We´re spending the next few days in Maldonado
and Punta del Este, famous Uruguayan beach areas. Caught a taxi to Terminal Tres Cruces and then a bus to Maldonado, they go every hour so no trouble getting a seat. The journey took about 1 1/2 hours and then we walked up to the town centre from the Maldonado terminal. Was a little hard to find because the terminal did not have any maps or tourist information at all, but we got there in the end. Found a hotel just off the Plaza San Fernando, and then went for a walk. There seem to be very few restaurants here, so had lunch in a cafe/bar just near the hotel. It was very nice, but prices are definitely higher here.
Cuartel de Dragones, Maldonado.
In summer, this area is heaving with tourists, and prices are probably double what they are now. We walked up the semi-pedestrian street, window shopping, and then back to the Cuartel de Dragones, the ruins of the army barracks where Artigas actually entered the army. The barracks were built between 1771 and 1796 and were part of the fortifications of Maldonado. There are only two long wings remaining, including the chapel, and they now house exhibitions and host events. There is one room all about Artigas and his life,and another about the first presidents of the independent South American nations. You can also see the foundations of some of the other buildings that were part of the cuartel. Within the complex is the National Painting and Sculpture Collection, a small collection of works donated by Nicolas Garcia Uriburu. Entry to both is free. Back on the Plaza is the Catedral de San Fernando built between 1801 and 1895. We couldn´t get in as the building was all locked up - we´ve noticed that here, very few churches are open all the time, but only at set times, essentially for mass.
Stayed in tonight, we´re making lunch the big meal at the moment, so we just get a few snacks to eat in our room while enjoying cable TV!