Today we took a taxi to the Old City. It is a combination of old architecture and new apartment flats. The architecture is very much Italian and Spanish inspired. I have included some photos to see the mix of old and new. The City center is very similar to that in any country with street artisans, vendors, shops, kiosks, .... The city parks - Plaza Martiz and Plaza Libertad are both under going renovations and updates. It is safe to walk these areas during the day but not recommended for visitors during the evening hours. We had lunch at La Corte which is a very popular place for business lunches and visitors (including Bush during his visit to Montevideo). www.lacorte.com.uy The lunch hour in Uruguay goes from 12:30-3:30 pm and is at a very relaxed pace. This is not a country where they bring a bill unless you ask. This was the first menu we had seen that suggested calorie counting items - remember this is a culture of meat and cheese. The food here is "au natural" non - processed. Au Nutural is an unspoken motto of Uruguay. They do not manufacture or process items. Don't worry...McDonald's has invaded and we have seen several. Other popular US/familiar brands include - Adidas/Reebok, Lays, Pepsi, MC and Visa (there are promotions for the credit card companies everywhere).
In walking through the City Center, we did see a small street farm market with homemade oils, mustards, and clothing. The street market is not for selling produce as we may see in Boston.