Uruguay ranks 5th in the world among countries with the most tourists relative to residents. With a population of 3,500,000 in 2010, Uruguay welcomed over 2,400,000 tourists and expects to reach 3 million by the end of 2011. The country implemented major infrastructure projects to provide greater comfort to visiting tourists. The new Carrasco International Airport and the Colonia river terminal represented significant investments.
"Colonia alone receives 2 million passengers each year and their first impression is of a modern, comfortable terminal," said Minister of Tourism and Sports Hector Lescano.
Historically, Argentines have accounted for most of the visitors arriving in Uruguay, at close to 65%, but the number of Brazilian tourists has increased significantly.
"Tourism from outside the region has been growing by 4% to 5% per year, reaching over 250,000 per year," said Minister Lescano,
Many of the visitors to Uruguay from outside the region come through the increasing number of cruise ships.
From November to April, Uruguay today welcomes more than 200 cruise ships which dock at the ports of Montevideo and Punta del...