We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Rich in Colonial history....plan plenty of time here” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Barrio Historico

Barrio Historico
Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay
Improve this listing
Book ahead on Viator
Top Rated
$83*
and up
Day Trip to Colonia from Montevideo
Type: Historic Walking Areas, Neighborhoods, Cultural
Activities: City walk sightseeing
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: This historic section of town takes you back to the 17th and 18th centuries, with an array of interesting museums, an historic lighthouse and Uruguay’s oldest church.
Australia
Top Contributor
579 reviews 579 reviews
335 attraction reviews
Reviews in 174 cities Reviews in 174 cities
503 helpful votes 503 helpful votes
“Rich in Colonial history....plan plenty of time here”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 25, 2013

We visited via a rushed bus tour from the cruise port in Montevideo - a rather long ride but worth it. Part of UNESCO, this incredible colonial town deserves the highest protection under their banner. Every street in the Barrio Histórico has an extraordinary collection of structures that unite three centuries of Portuguese, Spanish and Uruguayan history.

This is a walking town especially up and down the cobblestone streets in the historical quarter, along the reedy and muddy shoreline of the Río de la Plata, scaling some parts of the old lighthouse & fortifications or just strolling around the central Plaza Mayor - it was the only place where trees provided some shade from the blistering sun and humidity.

Founded by the Portuguese in 1680, the streets have no formal layout but rather built to the lay of the land in the Portuguese fashion. Across the bay is Buenos Aires with impressive buildings however, this town although not as grand has traditional architecture in buildings still used as homes, shops and restaurants. Materials such as long stone walls, wooden trellis and tiled roofs endow the rustic buildings with a unique charm.

Start walking and experience:

*Portón de Campo - the City Gate
*Calle San Pedro, a typical street in the historic quarter
*The waterfront - the Río de la Plata
*Old car parked on Calle Real
*Wall art – quirky and bright
*Lighthouse & convent ruins - Convent of San Francisco
*Basilica of the Holy Sacrament - built of stone
*Viceroy's House – the reconstructed Casa del Virrey
*Local Museums – local history, artefacts and day-to-day items.
*A meal in one of the restaurants – great food and wines

Next time we will stay overnight, it's a place not to be rushed. Not only will you miss seeing some of the sights but also the heat will have you dragging your feet in no time – better to visit in the cooler months!

We loved it all!

Enjoy your experience!

Visited February 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

2,341 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    1,562
    687
    82
    8
    2
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
13 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Walking tour.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2013

Free walking tour was not free! Self-guided tour in wind and rain was still enjoyable. Very interesting preserved or renovated streets and buildings with blend of Spanish and Portuguese. Good restaurants and shops.

Visited September 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
70 reviews 70 reviews
20 attraction reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“Stunning and historic treat”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2013

We've had two great days in the old part of Colonia - it's a truly stunning old town and well worth a visit. Stay a couple of days to let the quirkiness, beauty and laid back feel seep into your bones.

Visited September 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
18 attraction reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
“Nothing special”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 15, 2013

We heard a lot of good stories about this place. We were recommended to stay here instead of Montevideo or Buenos Aires, but we are happy we only stayed here for 2 full days... OK, you got some old buildings, a gate, a lighthouse, but we didn't think it was more special then the old town of Montevideo or San Telmo in Buenos Aires. The place was really dead, no ambiance at all. We stayed here thursday - saturday at the end of August. Maybe sundays are better here, but I don't really feel the need to go back again.

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gottingen, Germany
Top Contributor
85 reviews 85 reviews
23 attraction reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“A step back in time”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2013

A historical district where, were it not for cars, one may easily imagine being in another century. Most of the buildings are well kept, streets still have cobblestone pavement, the occasional car is randomly parked, and all is a feast for the eyes and the camera lense. Just take your time and walk the streets, there's a lot to discover.
On the downside, there are the expensive restaurants that are definitely taking advantage of tourists visiting the town.

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Barrio Historico also viewed

Colonia del Sacramento, Colonia Department
Colonia del Sacramento, Colonia Department
 
Colonia del Sacramento, Colonia Department
Colonia del Sacramento, Colonia Department
 

Been to Barrio Historico? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Barrio Historico, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.