Local traditions and culture in Montevideo

  • Mate: A strong herbal tea
    by henri123
  • Mate: A strong herbal tea
    by henri123
  • Mate: A strong herbal tea
    by henri123

Most Viewed Local Customs in Montevideo

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    La Noche de las Luces

    by andal13 Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    La noche de las luces (Night of Lights) is one of the most popular parties in Montevideo. Every year, in December, in a Saturday evening there is a fireworks festival at Pocitos beach. This party is organized by a TV channel (Canal 10) and a soft-drink company (Coca-Cola), and it is free.
    I downloaded the picture from Canal 1o website.

    La noche de las luces es una de las fiestas más populares de Montevideo. Cada año, en Diciembre, en una noche de sábado, hay un festival de fuegos artificiales en la playa Pocitos. Esta fiesta es organizada por un canal de TV (Canal 10) y una compañía de refrescos (Coca-Cola) y es gratuita.
    Bajé la foto de la página web de Canal 10.

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    Concerts

    by andal13 Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    During spring or summertime, you can enjoy open air concerts (for free) at different parks and squares; Orquesta Filarmónica de Montevideo (Philharmonic Orchestra of Montevideo) and Banda Sinfónica Municipal (Municipal Symphonic Band) give these concerts. The programmes are varied, and they include classic and popular music.
    The picture shows a concert of Banda Sinfónica Municipal and the singers Washington Carrasco and Cristina Fernández at El Prado, this last summer.

    Durante la primavera y el verano, pueden disfrutar de conciertos al aire libre (en forma gratuita) en distintos parques y plazas; la Orquesta Filarmónica de Montevideo y la Banda Sinfónica Municipal dan estos conciertos. Los programas son variados e incluyen música clásica y popular.
    La foto muestra un concierto de la Banda Sinfónica Municipal y los cantantes Washington Carrasco y Cristina Fernández en El Prado, el pasado verano.

    Open air concert

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    Día del Patrimonio

    by andal13 Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Día del Patrimonio (Heritage Day) is a new holiday: in 1995, the National Heritage Comittee promoted one day (it was a Saturday in September) when all the people could visit special places (official buildings, embassies) that customarily are closed to the public. It was so successful, that every September since then we enjoy our heritage day (nowadays, it is a week-end). Special activities take place during this week-end, and everybody enjoys and lives its city for free.

    El Día del Patrimonio es un feriado nuevo: en 1995, la Comsión del Patrimonio Nacional propuso un día (un sábado de septiembre) para que la gente pudiera visitar lugares (edificios oficiales, embajadas) que habitualmente están cerrados para el público. Tuvo tanto éxito, que cada septiembre desde entonces disfrutamos de nuestro día del patrimonio (en la actualidad, es un fin de semana). Actividades especiales tienen lugar durante este fin de semana, y todo el mundo disfruta y vive su ciudad en forma gratuita.

    Idiarte-Borda's Castle

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    Feria de Tristan Narvaja/flea market

    by rafscab Written Mar 19, 2008

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    The most famous flea market, full of antiques and curious things is Tristan Narvaja. The market is on the street, every sunday morning and is located almost in downtown Montevideo, so it's very easy to find it. Just take a taxi or a bus to 18 de Julio Ave. (main MVD ave.) and Tristan Narvaja st. Just in front of the University, Law faculty building and the National Library.
    An advice: as in any other public and crowded place in the world, take care of your valuables, use common sense.
    Anyway, along Tristan Narvaja st there are antiques shops and old bookstores open on weekdays that may be interesting.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture

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    La Cumparsita

    by SabrinaSummerville Written Apr 8, 2007

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    Argentina claims the birth of the Tango, but did you know that the most famous Tango dance of all, La Cumparsita, was created in Uruguay?

    We saw the most magnificent demonstration of this on our visit to Etchegarays House and I have written a seperate tip on that visit.

    There is no doubt but that the Tango is a very sexy dance, but this is the most exciting of all Tango dances.

    Tango dancers dance La Cumparsita
    Related to:
    • Music
    • Arts and Culture

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    New Years

    by oceania26 Updated Jan 11, 2007

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    I was there on the 29th of December, last working day before New Year Eve and people were throwing around their old calendar pages from that year. All over the city you see calendar pages flying around. When I first saw this, I thought someone accidentally lost their calendar but I soon found that was their way of celebrating...not too sure who cleans it up after the fact.

    Another little tradition they have is throwing water from office and balconies on passing cars...or so I thought. I was busy watching some ladies throw water on cars below and was thinking they wouldn't possibly do that to unassuming pedestrians below, especially strangers. Just as I was turning to walk I got totally drenched! I was not too happy about that considering I was wearing white pants, my camera (in my bag) and my money belt which contained my passport and important papers...and no clean change of clothes.

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    More urban wanderings

    by trek06 Updated Feb 10, 2006

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    The best thing you can bring to Montevideo is a good pair of walking shoes. You can avoid the cabs and buses and just see it on foot. It's a great way to get rid of excess calories from cerveza and all the extra food you sample on vacation.

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    Vamos La Vela de mi corazon!

    by Shakermaker Written Mar 2, 2005

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    I wasn't sure where to put this tip.....
    La Vela Puerca is one of the biggest bands in Uruguay, they have a mixture of styles within their records, mostly rock and ska.
    Their shows are great, they connect very well with the people and have a lot of catchy songs, they also take the shows very seriously and play great live.
    If you are into this kind of music and the band plays when you are in the city, make sure you check them out.

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    Endless discussions

    by Shakermaker Written Mar 2, 2005

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    In Uruguay we are very democratic and love to have discussions about politics. Last year a left wing party got the presidency for the first time and celebrations exploded all over the country (specially in Montevideo). I hope this government takes wise decitions so every Uruguayan has dignity and work.

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    La Musa 1

    by fool_moon Written Jul 21, 2004

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    Every group of the Candombé has a so called MUSA, a generally goodlooking, little wearing girl which is kind of motivating the group. As I was very exotic to this girls they practically all wanted to be on a picture with me, lol.

    Montevideo Musa

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    Yemanjá (2)

    by andal13 Written Mar 12, 2004

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    The devotees of Yemanjá or Iemanjá), Godess of the Sea, give her offerings on February 2nd; flowers, candles, combs, even jewels, are deposited into small boats, at the sea; the presents usually are white and sky blue, which are her colours. If she accepts the presents, the boat goes into the sea; if she does not, the boat is returned...

    Los devotos de Yemanjá (o Iemanjá), Diosa del Mar, le llevan ofrendas el 2 de febrero; flores, velas, peines, e incluso joyas, son depositados en botecitos, en el mar; los regalos habitualmente son blancos y celestes, sus colores. Si ella acepta los obsequios, el bote se va mar adentro; si ella no acepta, el bote es regresado a la orilla...

    Flores en el mar

    (Letra y música: Rubén Olivera)

    Hay flores en el mar,
    hay flores en el mar.
    En el borde de tu falda
    hoy te vienen a entregar,
    madre fuerza de las aguas,
    flores blancas en el mar.
    Hay flores en el mar,
    hay flores en el mar.
    En el borde de tus barcas
    una tenue claridad,
    y en los ojos de tus hijos
    se te puede adivinar.
    Hay flores en el mar,
    hay flores en el mar.
    Hay flores en el mar,
    hay flores en el mar.
    Se van las barcas de Iemanjá,
    se van las barcas de Iemanjá.
    En el borde de tus aguas
    hay un murmullo de sal,
    son aladas tus espumas,
    es salado tu cantar.
    Hay flores en el mar,
    hay flores en el mar.
    (Todos saben que en febrero crecen flores en el mar)
    (Quién no sabe que en febrero crecen flores en el mar)

    The offerings

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    Yemanjá

    by andal13 Written Mar 12, 2004

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    Uruguay is a lay country, and a lot of people do not practice any religion; the majority of those who do have a religion are Catholic, but during the last years an Afro-Brasilian religion (Umbanda) has won many adepts. One of the most important rituals of this religion is the Yemanjá celebration; Yemanjá is the godess of the sea, and on February 2nd her adepts go to the cost to give her offerings, thank her for her help or ask her petitions.
    This celebration attracts a lot of people, believers and just watchers.
    I am not a believer, but I feel this celebration is very touching.

    Uruguay es un país laico, y mucha gente no practica ninguna religión; la mayoría de aquellos que sí tienen religión son católicos, pero durante los últimos años una religión afro-brasileña (Umbanda) ha ganado numerosos adeptos. Uno de los ritos más importantes de esta religión es la fiesta de Yemanjá; Yemanjá es la diosa del mar, y los 2 de febrero sus adeptos se dirigen a la costa a llevarle ofrendas, agradecerle o hacerle peticiones.
    Esta celebración convoca a mucha gente, creyentes o simples observadores.
    Yo no soy creyente, pero siento que esta celebración es muy emotiva.

    Yemanj�� Celebration at Ram��rez beach

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    Bohemian City / Ciudad Bohemia

    by Shakermaker Written Feb 25, 2004

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    Montevideo is a bohemian city, the ciudad vieja is the perfect place to walk around, watch people and think, with a previous stop at a cafe to have a cortado of course.

    Montevideo es una ciudad bohemia, la ciudad vieja es la zona perfecta para bagar...simplemente caminar, observar a la gente y pensar con una previa parada por un cafe para tomar un cortado por supuesto.

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    Fishing

    by andal13 Updated Feb 17, 2004

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    I do not fish (I do like fish!) but a lot of people in Montevideo fish (just to eat, as a sport or as a job). As Montevideo has a long sea front, you can find fishermen (and "fisherwomen", and "fisherchildren") at different points. It is a very relaxing activity, and after all, a fishing rod is cheaper than a therapist!!!

    Yo no pesco (sí me gusta el pescado) pero mucha gente en Montevideo pesca (para comer, como deporte o como trabajo). Como Montevideo tiene una larga costa, puedes encontrar pescadores (hombres, mujeres y niños) en diferentes lugares. Es una actividad muy relajante, y después de todo, una caña de pescar es más barata que un terapeuta!!!

    Children fishing

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    Have you got a dog?

    by andal13 Updated Feb 17, 2004

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    Everybody MUST HAVE at least one dog in Montevideo (or a cat, a bird, a turtle, a hamster, some fishes, whatever); people who do not have a pet MUST have a good reason for that: "I live in a smal apartment" (valid only for dogs); "I work all day long; I cannot take care of a pet". If you do not have got a pet, you will be off a lot of conversations!
    Of course, as I am a responsible and conscious citizen so I have a beautiful dog (Sasha) and a fats turtle (Manuelita).

    Todo el mundo DEBE tener por lo menos un perro en Montevideo (o un gato, un pájaro, una tortuga, un hámster, unos peces, o lo que sea); la gente que no tiene una macota DEBE tener una buena razón para ello: "Vivo en un apartamento muy chico" (válido sólo para perros); "Trabajo todo el día; no puedo ocuparme de una mascota". Si ustedes no tienen una mascota, quedarán fuera de muchas conversaciones.
    Por supuesto, como soy una ciudadana consciente y responsable, tengo una hermosa perra (Sasha) y una veloz tortuga (Manuelita).

    Sasha's nap

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Montevideo Local Customs

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