I guess the Piriápolis experience was quite a shock to me, because after that I was in Punta del Este, which is almost exactly the contrary of what a permaculture community is. Beaches, surfers, countless towers of luxury apartments, casinos,… Punta del Este is to Argentinians what Ibiza is to Belgians, French and Germans. With a twist of Saint Tropez. In any case, no more my kind of place than a permaculture community. But luckily enough, I found a great host, who was able to show me a side of Uruguay you don’t see that often. Or maybe a side I don’t want to see myself. I like to think of Uruguay as a hippies’ country.
So after a quick tour of the city, during which Carlos related the whims of Punta’s wealthy people he has been faced with as an architect, and a great parillada in Maldonado, we went off to José Ignacio, a few kilometers more to the East. Nice beaches, beautiful houses, much more peaceful than the city we were trapped in just about an hour ago. Apparently, Shakira spends her summers here. To avoid the transformation of this quiet village in yet another trendy and packed touristic place, hotel towers and night clubs have been banned from José Ignacio. There is a “nice little hotel” though. Right on the beach. But you have to make a reservation for one week at least. And you have to pay 550,000 $. Per night.
Have I told you how much I loved the night I spent in a mud house?