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Uruguayan wines are up-and-coming

If somebody mentions New World wines, we’re most likely to think of the fertile valleys of California, Argentina and Chile.  In recent years however, little Uruguay on the east coast has been slowly making a name for itself – without the aggressive marketing abilities of its larger South American rivals, Uruguay is still unchartered territory for many wine aficionados but produces sophisticated reds, whites and rosés that are well worth investigating.

 

Vines at Narbona

Narbona Wine Lodge

 

The relatively flat landscape consists of gently weathered terrain, temperate climate and balanced altitude, with a mixture of clay, silt and limestone elements in the soil.  This results in wines that often have more in common with their European cousins than the deep, heavy reds of the Chilean Carménère or Argentinian Malbec – Uruguayan wines are more likely to have delicate personalities with complex tannins, lower alcohol and a touch more acidity.

 

Wine production is largely concentrated (90%) to the Canelones region on the South coast of the country, where strong inland breezes from the Atlantic Ocean moderate the South American heat.  The clay elements in the soil retain plenty of water – to the extent that vines rarely require irrigation – and the stability has enabled some unusual combinations of different varieties.

 

Interior of lodge

From heavy reds to sweet dessert wines…

 

Uruguay’s signature wines are reds produced from Tannat grapes; Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc have also taken well to the region, and some whites such as Albariño are gaining an international reputation.

Combine a visit to Uruguay’s wine regions with a tour around the rest of the country – this relatively unspoilt country is a little off the beaten track and features charming colonial towns, quaint fishing villages and wide, unspoilt beaches.

 

Include a bit of Uruguay travel in your itinerary with Latin Odyssey, or get a feel for the country with our images.  Uruguay beaches are sublime, with the gorgeous fishing village of Jose Ignacio showing off some of the best.

 

You may occasionally find Uruguayan wine in supermarkets and high street importers – look closely!

 

Colonia coast

Colonia is a UNESCO World Heritage city

 

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Dream Destinations in Latin America

Latin America is such a large area with so many different things to see and do, it can often be hard to know where to start looking. So, we thought we would try and narrow it down for you by showcasing what we would consider to be some of the best places to go and stay in South & Central America

 

 

 

Saying all this, the best way to get an idea of where to go is to give us a call. We have travelled to every single destination that we offer and can give you an in depth account of any given region as well as some impartial advice on hotels.

 

Off The Beaten Track

 

 

 

Where to go: Salta and the northwest of Argentina is a diverse region containing; vineyards, colonial villages, salt flats, canyons and excellent horse riding.

Where to stay: You ideally need about a week allowing you stay in the House of Jasmines near Salta and the Patios de Cafayate in the vineyards near Cafayate.

Also worth considering: The Yungas in Bolivia is an untouched escape

 

What our customers said: ‘The people of Argentina were fantastic’ Janet & Bill

 

Coastal Retreats

 

 

 

Where to go: The coastlines of both Trancoso in Brazil and the Riviera Maya in Mexico have the best beaches on the continent.

Where to stay: Lots of options in both areas with the best being the Villas Trancoso in Brazil and the Viceroy Riviera Maya in Mexico

Also worth considering: The Cayes in Belize offers a pristine reef system.

 

What our customers said: ‘The hotel was amazing the room was huge with a brilliant view.’ Steve C.

 

The National Parks

 

 

 

Where to go: Torres del Paine in Chile is unquestionably the best national park in Latin America. Towering peaks of granite and basalt, split by glaciers with multi coloured lakes and lagoons. The perfect place to walk and ride.

Where to stay: Over time, new hotels have emerged such as Awasi Patagonia, but the best still remains the Explora Patagonia hotel, inside the park, at the base of the mountains.

Also worth considering: The Galapagos National park off the coast of Ecuador

 

What our customers said: ‘The walk on the glacier was mind blowing.’ Stephen H.

 

Wildlife Watching

 

 

 

Where to go: The Pantanal in Brazil is the closest you will get to an African Safari where activities include walking, canoeing, driving safaris and horse riding.

Where to stay: The small and intimate Fazenda Barranco Alto and the Caiman Lodge have consistently been the best in the region.

Also worth considering: For ornithologist, there is nowhere better than Costa Rica

 

What our customers said: ‘The Pantanal was the highlight, what a gem of a place!’ Tim & Nell

 

Cultural Riches

 

 

 

Where to go: Peru is the epicentre of the Inca world. Machu Picchu obviously, but lesser known Pre-Inca ruins can be found around Arequipa and Lake Titicaca whilst other major Inca ruins are around both Cuzco and especially the Sacred Valley

Where to stay: Numerous places to choose from, but excellent retreats would be the Titilaka Hotel on Lake Titicaca and the Las Casitas del Colca in the Colca Canyon.

Also worth considering: The Mayan ruins of Guatemala where Tikal is the highlight

 

What our customers said: ‘Everything went really smoothly and it was all so amazing that I couldn’t pick a favourite bit!’ Ben D.

 

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