Paysandú is one of Uruguay’s most important cities. It is the capital of the department with which is shares its name and has 76,429 inhabitants. Located on the Río Uruguay, it is 368 km from the capital and borders the Argentine cities of Colón and Concepción del Uruguay, with which it is connected through the international General Artigas bridge. The capital has several attractions including Beer Week, Carnival and the celebrations of the founding of the city.
Thermal Springs in Paysandú
Almirón Thermal Center
This is the only salt water spring complex in the region. They are highly recommended for those who come in search of well-being and healthy practices.
Guaviyú Thermal Center
The Guaviyú thermal center has 8 pools (4 indoors) with natural surroundings to enjoy with the family.
They are surrounded by “Yatay” palm trees, providing an exotic atmosphere.
The Municipal Resort.
Located two km from the center, on the banks of the Río Uruguay, the resort has a beautiful promenade which displays multiple hues as the sunlight descends upon the dense vegetation of the Isla de Caridad. Attractions such as the “Guyunusa Camping”, the Summer Theater, the Río Uruguay Amphitheater, the Museum of Tradition and the children’s playground are a must for tourists.
The Río Uruguay Amphitheater.
International stars such as León Gieco, Los Auténticos Decadentes, Mercedes Sosa, Soledad, Chayane, Sopra Contrariar, Ismael Serrano, Serrat and many more have occupied its stage which is usually fully booked for the summer months.
Due to its acoustic properties, its dimension (it can seat over 20 thousand people) and its architectural features, the amphitheater, which opened in 1997, has attracted the interest of tourists from around the world.
The San Felix Hippodrome.
Located in the south of the city, it occupies an area of 50 hectares. The hippodrome was inaugurated on April 17, 1954, and was the largest equestrian racetrack in the countryside.
It has an elliptical race track which runs 1,700 meters, a monumental box, 300 boxes, restaurant and confectionery services, large gardens, automatic starters, cement stands and an electric eye at the finish line. The famous horse “Vitelio” ran on its track, considered the best horse to have run in our country, defeated for the first time in San Félix.
The first winning horse in San Félix was “Temprano”, which was credited with over 40 official victories.
The Almirón and Almería Islands.
In the Casa Blanca area, 15 km from the city, are the Almirón and Almería islands, good for deep water fishing and with beautiful surroundings which are ideal for camping.
Both islands offer a rugged natural beauty, with plenty of sand, which remain almost as untouched as in the times when they were inhabited by the Aborigines. Amid the gallery forests which continue the Misionera jungle (the river transports seeds from the north and deposits them on the islands) you can appreciate rare species of flora and fauna which are not common in any other part of Uruguay.
Fishing lovers cannot miss the Paysandú Fishermen Club which has a floating headquarters and a beautiful park on the Río Uruguay.
The latter offers campers barbeques, tables, bathrooms, showers and private parking. The park canteen is the setting for frequent get-togethers around the classic asado con cuero (traditional countryside barbeque) and family gatherings for those who love the great outdoors.
Every year the club holds prestigious departmental and international competitions.
The Chajá dessert.
The iconic traditional local dessert par excellence is, without doubt, the Chaja dessert. Its origins date back to 1927, when a confectioner was inspired to create a unique blend of meringue, sponge cake, Chajá cream, and peach.
While the dessert is from Paysandú, its rapid growth has transformed it into a typical Uruguayan product, a market leader. The “dessert which travels furthest”, as its slogan states, is today one of the most appreciated souvenirs for tourists.
The Paysandú Yacht Club and the Artigas Plateau.
Its boat-shaped headquarters is located on the banks of the Río Uruguay to the north of the city. It has a pier with 10,000 m2 of reflective water with a surface level 2 meters below the “0” level of the Río Uruguay, where there are beautiful and quick lightning, snipe, launch and optimist boats.
The most important and traditional competition organized by the Yacht Club is the Regata Meseta de Artigas Paysandú, a transcendent event which takes place annually during Tourism Week with the participation of boats from Uruguay, Argentina and Brazil. This race was conceived in 1950 on the centenary of the passing of our national hero, General José Artigas, and has taken place ever since.
Optimist school, boating school, Optimist storage, windsurf board storage, covered docking, beach docking area and a recreational park with barbeque areas and a children’s playground are just some of the services the institution offers.
Montes del Queguay
The Montes del Queguay area, located at the confluence of the Queguay Grande and Queguay Chico Rivers, entered the National System of Protected Areas in December 2014 as a result of its diverse environments. It has an area of approximately 20,000 hectares which includes lowlands (wetlands, grasslands, lakes, rivers), one of the largest ranges of natural coastal hills in the country, highlands (basaltic hills and associated hill forests), and shrublands.
The area was also the stage for many events that marked the history of our country, so high cultural, historical and archaeological values can be added to its natural value.
The forests of Paysandú were where the last Charrúas (the indigenous population) lived and you can still find the ranch where Melchora Cuenca, the Paraguayan wife of José Artigas, spent her last years on the banks of the Queguay River.
Through the joint work of the Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment, the Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Sport, the construction of a Visitor Center will be financed through the “Tourism Sector Support” loan contract to enhance the experience of visitors to the area.
Visit the heroic city of Paysandu
Between December 1864 and the first days of 1865, the city of Paysandu was besieged by General Venancio Flores, whose allies were Brazilian and Argentine soldiers and ships. The defense, organized by the Gral. Leandro Gomez, brought together about a thousand men, among whom there were several civilians and they precariously endured the bombing of the invading troops that had nearly 15,000 soldiers. This episode, not only gave the nickname of Heroic to the city of Paysandu, but it was also the preamble of one of the greatest tragedies of America: the Paraguayan War.
Camino de Leandro Gómez (The Way of Leandro Gomez) is an experiential proposal that takes visitors along emblematic sites and includes anecdotes and stories of this heroic feat.
Contact: Department of Tourism
Tel. (+598) 472 26220 Ext. 198
Paysandú by the water
For sailors who come to the area, we recommend getting in touch with two interesting organizations: Paysandú Yacht Club, and the Paysandú Fishing Club
Paysandú Yacht Club
Floating jetties with electricity, drinking water, Wi-fi, and cable TV.
Training boat, sailing courses
A ramp for vessel transportation, with tractor service all year round
Crane and a large area for keeping boats
Playground, multipurpose fields and courts
Event room “Vieja Cantina”
Raft for embarking and disembarking
Sacra vessel with capacity for 25 people (20 beds, kitchen, china, 2 bathrooms)
A 10,000 meter bay of mirror-like water with a 2-meter draught below the 0-level of the Uruguay River in a local port
Recreational park with barbecues and covered areas
Address: Salto Avenue by Costanera – Paysandú, Uruguay
Telephone: (598) 4722059
Paysandú Fishing Club
Recreational area with barbecue and roof
Bathrooms and showers
Address: Baldomero Vidal Avenue 1581 (Costanera) – Paysandú, Uruguay
Telephone: (598) 47222885
Source: Ministry of Tourism