Valizas / Aguas Dulces - Photos: Pablo Etchevers
ocated in the Southeast of the Department of Rocha, more precisely at about the 270th kilometer marker on National Route 10, there lie the small cities of Aguas Dulces and Valizas.
With small sand roads, giant beaches and small wooden ranchos (very simple houses), Aguas Dulces represents the best proposal for those who wish to travel light, with much patience and many books. The origin of this charming bathing resort may be traced back to the houses the settlers of the City of Castillo built opposite the sea many years ago in order to spend their weekends. Aguas Dulces -which means fresh waters in Spanish- owes its name to the fact that it is very easy to find fresh pure water in its soil. One just needs to dig a shallow hole in the ground for it to spring.
Should Valizas be defined, only two words would be necessary: “rustic” and “beautiful”. These words would perfectly summarize the spirit of this seaside city.
The best option to reach these cities is going to the District of Rocha along National Route 9 and then taking Provincial Route 10. Approximately 160 kilometers separate them from the City of Punta del Este and they lie 275 kilometers from the City of Montevideo, the capital of Uruguay.
Both fishermen villages have their ranchos on the clear and huge white dunes that overlook the sea sprinkled by natural lagoons that stand out at first sight. But there are also houses, cabins and hostels equipped with all luxuries and services typical of modern times.
During the day, the beach is a must. Most activities are related with the water and the sand, but it is also possible to enjoy hiking and tours to Valizas Stream, which leads to the impressive ombú grove. Other attractions include Castillos Lagoon, Mount Buena Vista or just reading a book on the sand with the company of mate and a flask with hot water. A large sand hill dropping into the sea has been called “The Great Vali”. It is ideal for the practice of sand boarding in the summer.
In the evening, visitors just let themselves be carried away by the crafts market, the music and candombe, which come out from some pub or just arise from the magic of seeing the most starry and clearest skies in the world. Nothing is impossible.