Montevideo Highlights & Uruguayan Carnival

  • Port

    Montevideo, Uruguay

  • Activity Level


  • Excursion Type


  • Wheelchair Accessible


  • Starting At


  • Minimum Age

    Information not currently available.

  • Duration

    Approximately 4½ Hours

  • Meals Included


Carnival in South America is primarily associated with Rio de Janeiro, but did you know that Uruguay, the second-smallest country of South America, actually celebrates the longest Carnival competition in the world?

A comprehensive city tour (approximately 3½ hours) is followed by a visit to the Carnival Museum, located adjacent to the port. Here you will gain an insight into one of the best-kept secrets of South America -- Carnival in Uruguay is a mix of European and African traditions. There five categories in which local carnival groups compete each year. Drummers and dancers play and dance to a drum-based rhythm known as Candombé, which originally comes from Angola and the Congo. The African slaves that were brought to South America in the 17th and 18th century used Candombé as a means to express their culture and united their history, culture and religion in the music and the dance moves. After Uruguay´s Declaration of Independence in 1825, slavery was abolished. Candombé, however, remained present in Uruguay´s culture and has become not only very popular but also an important link for the different ethnicities. Murga is a mixture of song, theatre and comedy and has its origins in Cádiz, Spain. Local Uruguayan Murga ensembles, decked out with colorful painted faces and bright creative costumes, make political and social statements through opera-inspired songs -- goosebumps guaranteed!

Enjoy an interactive guided tour and learn about the Uruguayan Carnival from local experts. At the end of the tour, watch a demonstration of Candombé or Murga and join in, if you wish.

Afterwards, walk back to the pier and the ship.