Each year, The New York Times travel section compiles its giant list of Places to Go. 2014’s list featured no fewer than 52 destinations around the world, with Cape Town snagging the top spot. Buried somewhere in the middle of the list is a short blurb I wrote on a place I’ve spent quite a bit of time: the Uruguayan Riviera. This stretch of coast between Argentina and Brazil doesn’t get a lot of attention, but it should. It’s got great beaches, gorgeous little fishing villages and fresh seafood and – at least for the moment – it’s still cheap and uncrowded. Here’s what I had to say.
Uruguayan Riviera: South American beach towns, before they go upscale
By Remy Scalza for The New York Times 52 Places to Go in 2014
Published January 2014
(For the online version on The New York Times website, click here.)
Around glamorous Punta del Este and boho-chic José Ignacio, there’s no deficiency of boutique hotels, expat art galleries and exclusive waterfront brasseries. But farther east along the Uruguayan Riviera, a relatively untrodden stretch of Atlantic coast tucked between Argentina and Brazil, sun, sand and simplicity remain the draw — for now. In the Rocha region, villages like Cabo Polonio, La Pedrera, San Antonio and Punta del Diablo are just starting to attract serious international attention, bringing a sprinkling of first-rate accommodation — like Brisas, a clifftop 14-room inn restored by an Argentine tech mogul — without compromising the area’s natural charms: miles of undeveloped beach, rolling pastures and a culture where gaucho cowboys and fishermen with wooden boats aren’t just props.