How to Get From Buenos Aires, Argentina to Montevideo, Uruguay

Now that you’ve enjoyed the delicious steak, live tango music and European vibe of Buenos Aires it’s time to move on to your next destination: Montevideo, Uruguay.

These two cities are relatively close together geographically, so you would think that it would be simple to get between them. However, it’s not possible to simply drive from one to the other, as they are separated by the mouth of the Rio de la Plata.

Buenos Aires, Argentina
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Taking the Ferry from Buenos Aires to Montevideo

The simplest way to get from Buenos Aires to Montevideo is on the ferry and there are several choices of ferry companies that offer this journey. The ferry makes a lot more sense than flying, as plane tickets will be more expensive and it will take 40 minutes to get to the airport anyway. Also, you will miss out on the gorgeous views that you can enjoy on the boat.

Make sure that you arrive at least 30 minutes in advance so that you can clear customs and immigration.

Buenos Aires, Argentina
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Ticket prices change regularly due to the fluctuations of the Argentinian peso, so check the websites of the ferry companies for rates. If you are already in Buenos Aires, you will save a lot of money if you have brought US dollars with you and you can exchange it at a Cambio for the “Blue Rate”.

If you are prone to sea sickness make sure that you take precautions – sometimes the crossing can be a bit rocky.


There are comfortable ferries that depart from the Buquebus terminal in Puerto Madero. There are two services to choose from, the faster ferry takes 1.25 hours and the slower (yet cheaper) service takes three hours. Buquebus is the only company that offers a direct ferry service from Montevideo to Buenos Aires.

Buy your ticket here

Montevideo, Uruguay
Montevideo, Uruguay

Colonia Express

The Colonia Express ferry departs from the Terminal Internacional de Cruceros on Ave. Inmigrantes in Buenos Aires. It reaches the historic city of Colonia in 50 minutes. You could stay in Colonia if you like (it’s a lovely town!) or take a bus to Montevideo. The buses to Montevideo take around 2 hours and they leave every hour.

Buy your ticket here

Seacat Colonia

This company also operates a one hour ferry between Buenos Aires and Colonia. You can then take the bus to Montevideo from Colonia.

Buy your ticket here

Stopover in Colonia, Uruguay

Colonia, Uruguay
Colonia, Uruguay

I would recommend stopping for a day or even just a few hours in the UNESCO World Heritage City of Colonia. Unless you pay for the expensive direct ferry to Montevideo you will need to stop here anyway to catch the bus, so why not take the opportunity to walk through the quiet streets, dine at a seafront restaurant and admire the colonial architecture?

Have you made the journey from Buenos Aires to Montevideo? Tell us about your experience in the comments.

Kelly Dunning

A Canadian freelance writer with a love of art, culture, literature and adventure, Kelly loves exploring foreign lands and expressing her experiences through the power of the written word.

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