Buenos Aires Off the beaten track
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Instructions and ticketing all very good The Colonia Express is quite old and there is nowhere to charge phones, this is bad. Colonia is pretty and touristy but it would have been long enough for me to get the 8.15am boat there and the 4.15pm return. It was rather a long time until the 8.15 boat. The walking tour was alright but very, very short. The Colonia Tourist Information was very bad. I asked where I could charge the phone. NOWHERE!!!! She also shouted at me No English. Hmmm. Not good. Lunch was very nice. The ferry terminal at Colonia is very new and nice but they have put in plug sockets where you can charge phones. But, you must have a Uruguay adapter. This is different from Argentina. Also for some reason the USB sockets, and there are many, have all been disabled!!!! WHY DO THIS? This is totally stupid. Overall a very good day. Just need to get with the 21st Century.

We booked the tour including walking tour and meal as it was cheaper than booking the boat trip by itself. The walking tour was ok but very rushed and Maria walked as she spoke so it was difficult to hear her. I was very concerned about what we would do until it was time for the late ferry. The historical part of Colonia is very small and doesn’t take long to see. Fortunately we met done other people and shared the cost of hiring a golf buggy so we were able to get to the lovely beaches around the area etc. The meal, although adequate was just 2 courses with water or a soft drink. The lady serving was rather brusque and did not offer anything else. Overall I would recommend choosing the option without lunch to return on the earlier ferry as it was after 10.30 when we reached BA. We were also lucky to make new friends!

We had a wonderful day with Shir in BA. The gourmet market was full of wonderful fresh food, and our visit was followed by a scenic stroll through the historic English neighbourhood. We then went up to Shir's immaculate apartment, where we learned how to make two types of empanadas, and toss pancakes like a pro. Then we ate local cakes, a cheese and meat platter, drank wine, ate our freshly made empanadas and finished off with pancakes and big spoonfuls of dulce de leche. Shir was great company and the perfect host, as were the other two guests. What a great day out! Highly recommended

The check-in process for the crossing was very smooth if a bit long-winded but the voyage there and back was easy. The original guide dropped out at short notice but the company was able to organise an excellent replacement. One thing to note is that you don’t really need any Uruguayan pesos, and indeed many restaurants will give you a discount if you pay with a foreign (Visa) credit card. This is because foreigners do not have to pay a sales tax of 14.4%.

We bought ferry tickets across to Colonia for a day trip. I bought the tickets online through Get your Guide. The tickets were cheaper with Get your guide than at the port. We didn’t need to print anything out, just turn up at the port with our reservation number (sent by colonia express) and passports. It was a very efficient process, we didn’t have to queue to check in we could just print out tickets from the auto check in with our reservation number.