Montevideo Independence Plaza (Plaza Independencia)
Independence Plaza is a popular stop on city sightseeing tours, including walking and bus tours. You can explore the square with a guide to learn more about Montevideo’s history, get a birds’-eye view from Salvo Palace’s 25th-floor viewing deck, or immerse yourself in Uruguayan culture in the Solis Theater. At the center of Independence Plaza, an imposing statue of General José Artigas marks the spot of the Artigas Mausoleum, where the Uruguayan hero’s remains are interred.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Independence Plaza is a must-visit for anyone interested in Uruguayan history.
- Be prepared for some climbing, as visitors must ascend two sets of stairs and a short ladder to reach Salvo Palace’s viewing deck.
- Tours of Salvo Palace and Solis Theatre are available in English and Spanish.
- The square’s walkways are wheelchair- and stroller-accessible, though many of the attractions are not.
How to Get There
Independence Plaza is located in the heart of Montevideo, within walking distance of many major hotels and attractions. The closest bus station is Buenos Aires, a minute’s walk away, and the ferry terminal is a 20-minute walk away.
When to Get There
The public square can be visited at any time of the day, though it’s worth checking the opening hours of specific attractions before you arrive. After-dark tours of Salvo Palace let you discover hidden corners of the building and hear immersive stories about its history, while a post-show stroll through the illuminated plaza is a perfect way to round off your evening out in Montevideo.
Puerta de la Ciudadela On the western side of the plaza, look out for Puerta de la Ciudadela (Gateway of the Citadel), one of the last remaining sections of the Spanish-built citadel wall that was torn down in 1829, after Uruguay gained independence. The landmark is a common stop on historical tours of the capital, which provide insight into the country’s four-way independence struggle.