Mercedes & Nuevo Berlin, Uruguay

So originally we wanted to go to a National Park Mburucuya in the north of Argentina but given the buses that were available and how complicated it would have been to get there we decided to head directly for Uruguay. A nightbus took us to Gualeguaychú,  still on the Argentinian side but right next to the border because we tought it would be easy to cross from there.

However there was only one bus across the border and we would have had to wait 5 hours. But the lady from the information desk told us a spot from where apprently “many people hitchhike to the border. So we tought that’s the place to be and a bunch of cars and trucks passed by there towards Uruguay. But even after 2 hours noon had taken us (one guy stopped but he would have left us in the middle of nowhere).

Then it was time to give it u there and head back to the bus station to not miss the 1pm. It then brought us directly to Mercedes, Uruguay:

By the time we had arrived to Mercedes it was already late afternoon we had a walk around town (basically everything can be covered in two hours) and had some traditional Uruguayan dishes for dinner. We tried two different ones, Gramajo and Chivito. The first one is a mix of fried potatoes, eggs and ham and the second one is sandwich overfilled with meat and egg and also some vegetables in it. So all in all “very healthy” but we enjoyed it and it tasted great.

The next morning we took a bus to what we tought was the entrance to a nice national park, to a village called Nuevo Berlin. This was founded by Germans and the German influence was clear right away, never before have I seen a private garden that well cared for in South America:

Some Germans from the very north of Germany also seem to have moved there:

So we were quite positive that we would only need to find a boat that would take us across the river and then we could enjoy the Esteros de Farrapos National Park. But it turns out most people there haven’t even heard about this National Park. And we talked to a guy who told us, “No, there is no animal protection here, people hunt and kill whatever they want.” – Just like this all hope was destroyed.

Someone else then told that the two available boats had already left earlier this morning, so we gave up on this National Park. So to our experience the National Park Esteros the Farrapos in Nuevo Berlin isn’t anything more than a lonely sign at the side of a river (however we saw some Parrots nearby):

The only open restaurant in town and the one we “chose” to have lunch and even play a round of pool:

To my opinion this picture pretty much sum up Nuevo Berlin, it has seen better days and nothing much is happening there (but who knows maybe times are changing, a new school had been constructed in the center).

So we left to Montevideo with the next bus.

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