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Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Today, we are taking a short break from the traveling in Rocha series, to remind myself, why I like my town. Fall is just about finished here and I wanted to quickly capture my favorite street in all of it's glory. This street is called Pearl (Perla in Spanish) and the trees pictured here are commonly called Paradise trees (Paraíso). The streets are all named after things belonging to the ocean or sea in my little town.

I travel down this street once a week, on my way to the Feria (farmer's market). Today I brought my camera! 

Looking around my town, I suddenly remembered a post I had planned to do around the time Wally went back to the states to visit his dad. It's about camping.

In my last post I mentioned something called "Glamping", that's a new term being used that combines the idea of glamour and camping together. Basically it's room service, private baths with showers, all the amenities you could want, while sleeping in a tent (the camping part), that's the gist of the plan.

Well, we're not talking about that today, rather I'm bringing you another option, the typical Uruguayan way of vacationing. It's no secret that Uruguayans love the beach and value their coastline. I once overheard a conversation about a typical Uruguayan vacation , they said that, "the rich Uruguayans go to their second house, on the beach, the well-off rent a house at/or near the beach and that the rest go camping, close to the beach!"

 I once had a worker excitedly tell me he was going camping with his family the next week, when I asked where they would be going he mentioned some town nearby me. I was puzzled, there was no lake, mountain, canyon or national park nearby in that town (my idea of going camping) Instead, he started talking about staying there because of the microwaves and the nice swimming pool there, something that not a lot of the typical campsites had! I was still kind of puzzled but didn't think much more about it until I started noticing the many signs in the various towns along the coast offering camping!

Finally, when a camping sign went up in my neighborhood, I just had to go and check it out!

Camping in Marindia!

The beach is about 2 blocks away from this site. What's so unique about these vacation sites is that they are located in among the regular town, up ordinary streets. Follow this street up, with its interesting planting strip and you will find a blue administration building. I went inside to find the manager and ask about prices.

Adrian is a very friendly man who speaks some English. He gladly answered my many questions. I'm rather bold so I had him troop me around the property and of course, I made him pose next to this bougainvillea  for this blog post.

You have to bring your own tent or camper to sleep in but the camp site offers 2 separate bathrooms, one for males (or caballeros in Spanish) and one for females (Damas). They have shower facilities in the bathrooms. I asked if they had hot and cold running water in them or just cold. Yes, they have hot water, so that was good. There is a little outside covered area to wash your dishes in and on the other side are old fashioned laundry sinks to wash and scrub your clothes in. It's nice that they keep the two functions separated!  In addition there are little grilling stations for cooking. Electricity is also available! 

Mondays through Saturdays there is a little onsite store providing some of life's necessities. It's open from 9:00 am to 6pm and sells various sundry items, soap, salsas, sodas, beer and wine among other things. I took a few photos of the offerings. I believe that anyone in the neighborhood can go and shop at this little Autoservicio.

I managed to take a few candid shots of some campers using this camping park. Some were in tents while others had trailers and campers.

So, what does it cost to stay over night in such a camp site? Bear in mind, this park was a no frills site. It doesn't have a swimming pool or any microwave ovens but for only $50 pesos per person, per day. That means, it costs under $3 dollars a night (per person) to stay there. How about that for a cost effective vacation? Remember, your only two blocks from the beach! Before the dollar became so weak, it cost under $2 a night to stay. The advantage of these, in town camping sites, is that you are in a local town and a part of it's infrastructure, yet you and your kids are away from home enjoying a break from your normal routine. 

 I guess, I get the idea now, of camping in town. This was Marindia's little campground. The town of Salinas only 1 1/2 km s away, has it's own campgrounds, as do many other beach towns. So, now you too can be on the lookout for your neighborhood camping site!

Note; this camp site in Marindia had closed down but is now reopened, the local cell phones for information are 098 141335  or 094 141335


Anonymous said...

"$50 pesos per person, per day. That means, it costs under $3 dollars a night (per person)"... its a good price... i like Uruguay... this is friendly Country.... Graciously

Anonymous said...

Great pics and information as always!
It's affordable and quite beautiful,being quite the beach person myself.
Keep up the excellent work!!

william c

Trương Chi said...

Have you ever heard about Vietnam ?