Uruguay may be on the small side, but it packs an incredible amount of natural beauty into its space. The country consists of a variety of landscapes, including hills, plains and forests, which are home to an equally diverse array of wildlife—so much so that Uruguay was ranked fourth in the world for biodiversity by the WWF. As if its nature wasn’t enough to make you fall in love with Uruguay, it also offers three incredible national parks filled with stunning vistas and plenty to explore. Here are just three national parks worth checking out in Uruguay that we recommend adding to your travel bucket list as soon as possible!
Santa Teresa National Park
One of Uruguay’s most well-known national parks is Santa Teresa, which is situated on the Atlantic coast not far from the Brazilian border. It is most well-known for being the location of several stunning beaches, but it also has walking paths, camping grounds, and the old Fort of Santa Teresa on its grounds. Estancia Laguna de la Restinga National Park: Estancia Laguna de la Restinga is another one of Uruguay’s best-kept secrets.
Isla de Flores National Park
Isla de Flores is one of Uruguay’s newest national parks, and it is situated off the city of Montevideo. The ancient lighthouse on this little island makes it well worth a visit. It features a nice visitor center with exhibits that tell you about all the local flora and fauna you will see there, as well as a cafeteria for refreshments during your visit.
Wandering around this park you will come across different types of trees like yuccas, palm trees, acacias and junipers.
Cabo Polonio National Park
Travelers who wish to disconnect when visiting Uruguay frequently visit Cabo Polonio. There is no road to this sleepy community, which is a hippy haven. You can get there by hiring a 4×4 car or trekking over sand dunes, but once you are there, there is no electricity or running water. Visitors need to carry everything they need for the duration of their stay and should be prepared for high winds and cold temperatures. The rewards are stunning views of the ocean and the chance to explore untouched beaches.