“Where are you when the sun goes down? You’re so far away from me” – Mark Knopfler.
Somebody told me that Casapueblo in Uruguay is one of the best places to view the sunset from. I cannot remember who told me that – but they were right. This was unbeatable.
I was staying nearby in the trendy seaside resort of Punta Del Este and a hat-trick of Chilean ladies at the plush (but rat infested) hostel at El Viajero had been the night before.
So I was all set to see the sun set. At Casapueblo. Casapueblo, which translates far too easily into English as TownHouse, is a special fancy house located right by the Rio de La Plata at an unknown beach side resort called Punta Ballena.
That day I had wandered all around Punta Del Este with Patricia an Argentinian girl from the hostel. She also wanted to see Casapueblo and of course for sunset, so we went to the bus station in Punta Del Este to book our tickets. It’s as well we did cos the bus was rammed.
We booked them at lunch time for the 4.45 pm bus to Montevideo from Punta Del Este, but we booked to get off at Punta Ballena,which cost 37 Pesos. The bus journey was hot, stuffy and at the start I even had a seat. Once a few elderly passengers got on I made way for them so on the 20 minutes bus ride, I stood in the aisle for about half of it – from Maldonado to Punta Ballena.
We were let out on a busy road – about 5 or 6 of us got off the bus and it was obvious that we were all tourists. There we crossed the busy carriageway (actually this is the main road between Maldonado and Montevideo).
Punta Ballena itself is a tiny place – seemed to be just a few apartment blocks and a seaside community. However Casapueblo is only a 2 kilometre walk down the coast so off we went. There were some nice views shooting back towards Punta Del Este, itself being the southernmost tip of Uruguay.
And there at the end of this path was the edge of this particular part of Uruguay coupled with the dynamic entrance sign to Casapueblo…
Me by the sign.
Northern Ireland flag at Casapueblo.
Ticket for entry to the art gallery. 120 Pesos.
Watching an excellent documentary on Carlos Paez Vilaro, artist and creator of this masterpiece.
OK, so what is Casapueblo?? Basically an elaborate, artistic funky design of a house right on the coast in the south of Uruguay. Basically it’s a work of art.
Wee bar inside.
Weird pregnant woman art.
Pablo Picasso room.
One of many books by Carlos Paez Vilaro.
John Lennon Square – a tribute – the names of the rooms etc. in Casapueblo were all dedicated to famous people who Carlos actually met.
Relaxing on the lower balcony.
Having a beer with Patricia on the balcony.
Our view pre sunset.
Sunset 8. While the sun was going down they played this amazing narrated tape of Carlos talking and describing his love of the sun. Truly amazing.
Fantastic place to watch the sun go down, totally incredible.
This is typical of Casapueblo at sunset.
As gorgeous as your life at sunset will ever get.
That southern Uruguayan sun finally leaves the Punta Ballena skyline…
Post sunset through the fence on the balcony.
Me, post sunset at Casapueblo.
That gorgeous sky post sunset. To be honest I could just put all the photos I took up here, but there are too many! I’ve put 90% of them on facebook now.
Leaving Punta Ballena.
After we finished watching sun going down, we had met up with three US ladies who were also staying at the hostel, as well as a Costa Rican guy who was working in Punta Del Este for a few days. So now there were six of us all looking to go back to the same place.
It was a 2 kilometre walk up hill back to where he had got off the bus. But now it was dark already, and we had missed the 10 pm bus, arriving back there at 10.05 pm. We heard there was only one bus every hour, and that the 11pm bus was our last chance to get back to Punta Del Este. All my stuff was in Punta and I had booked the night at the hostel there, plus we weren’t sure if there was even anywhere to stay nearby.
We couldn’t find an obvious bus stop either so just waited by the side of the road, which was busy.We decided we should keep jumping up and down (or at least I did) with one of the girls flashing her mobile phone as a light to try and get the drivers to stop. Worst case scenario would have been hitchhike or walk back.
About 30 minutes later we were in luck. A bus driver pulled over and stopped to pick us up, just because he saw me jumping up and down like a maniac, as one of the US girls remarked “the jumping Northern Irishman saved us.” and we were on a bus home to nearby the hostel.
Sunset at Casapueblo was truly remarkable!
Where – Casapueblo, Punta Ballena, Uruguay
When – Sunset (depends on time of year)
Website – http://www.carlospaezvilaro.com
Entry cost – 120 Pesos (museum, art gallery, incredible view)
Transport Used – Public buses (COT)
Nationalities Met – Uruguayan, Argentinian, United States, Costa Rican
PRE – SUNSET AT CASAPUEBLO:
SUNSET AT CASAPUEBLO:
BUS HOME TO PUNTA DEL ESTE:
RELATED SONG – WATERLOO SUNSET by The Kinks:
UN RELATED SONG – TEQUILA SUNRISE by The Eagles:
ARCTIC MONKEYS – WHEN THE SUN GOES DOWN: