Cabo Polonio, Uruguay

It’s a common question: Would you rather live in the city, or live in the country? I don’t even know if Cabo Polonio counts as country.. Up on the northern end of Uruguay’s coastline this little village has budded up in between distended sand dunes, two beaches, and a community of sea lions. So yea. Maybe we should add a third option to the common question.

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Like San Cipriano, Colombia, Cabo Polonio isn’t accessible by road, but unlike San Cipriano the obstacle here is sand. As a result, I thought I would be taking a 4X4 in. Nope. Around the corner comes this amped up tractor/monster truck bearing pirate symbols on its front doors. These bad boys, called “Uruguayan Chives” can apparently transport 40 people at a time as they jolt, break, and wobble from side to side like a drunkard through the uneven sand. I had fun, but the kid behind me was a little nervous.

When you get past the sand and beaches and arrive at the village, you can recognize the common bohemian theme that influences a lot of the Eastern Uruguayan coast. Paintings are scrawled on to the local clothes shops, the market, and the hostels. Also, quite commonly men and women alike have dreads. Furthermore, the buildings are makeshift in having wood nailed together or metal roofs screwed on only as needed. As for the floors, instead of putting down cement or wood, a few of the bars and hostels plug upside down bottles into the ground in order to make fire places or walkways. To top things off, even the sunset seemed bohemian for my one night stay in Cabo. As the sun went down, the sky actually got brighter, and multicoloured openings streamed across the coast. My camera couldn’t catch it really, but the colour at the top of the sunset was a light blue almost like you were seeing another day in a different reality. Lol I know that sounds exaggerated, but it was honestly unreal.

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Apart from the bohemian paint, engineering, and light festival, Cabo Polonio is home to a lighthouse that looks over the landscape surrounding the village. There, you can see the sand dunes in the distance, the two beaches that cushion in the village from each side, and also sea lions on the coastal rocks. There’s a fence protecting the sea lions natural habitat, but you can still get close enough on the ground to watch them hop, grunt, and swim around. Actually, I especially found it funny to watch them just lying down as their bodies go completely limp even against the rock surfaces.

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So could you live here? If not, how long could you live here for? In our generation we rely a lot on technology to communicate with others and some people it seems are addicted to their phones. If you asked someone if they had wifi here they would certainly look at you funny. There’s also the question of keeping our minds busy. So maybe write a book, learn how to surf, or become a painter? I know that I depend on technology to talk online with my clients, but I would definitely come back to Cabo Polonio to at least try to catch another one of those bohemian sunsets.

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