As exciting as Buenos Aries has been, I am really looking forward to exploring Uruguay.  I’d intended to travel to Montevideo but friends suggested I head inland avoiding the coastal tourist centres. Tom, an ex-jockey I’d met recently in New Zealand, had worked here as a ‘gaucho’ and described a dream lifestyle!  So with great anticipation I took the overnight bus and arrived in Tacuarembó in the north-east of Uruguay’s interior near the border with Brazil.  It’s a city but has a good small town vibe and some lovely architecture.

The weather in this part of South America is almost perfect – warm summers and cool  winters – not too much rain and plenty of sunshine! All around Tacuarembó are vast, rolling grass plains – the ‘Pampas’ –  perfect for raising the beef cattle for which Uruguay is famous.  The cattle outnumber the people by 4:1 and, unlike most of South America, intensive farming is almost non-existent….quality is the thing. I can’t wait to discover some great recipes and put them to the test!

I will be out of contact for the next few days – living, riding and working on a small estancia. There is no internet, no mobile reception and home generated electricity (3 hours an evening). Sounds captivating!  If you don’t hear from me you can guess where you can find me…

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