• Colombia!

    Colombia: Caribbean Sea coast. Go Now!

    Although most of the people live inland, Colombia also has its share of coastline along the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea (pictured). Go Now!

  • Ecuador!

    Ecuador: Sally Lightfoot Crab. Go Now!

    The Galapagos Islands and Ecuador are home to incredible wildlife, such as the famous Galapagos Turtle and the lesser known, but more common Red Rock or Sally Lightfoot crab (pictured). Begin Your Journey!

  • Chile!

    Chile: Torres del Paine National Park. Go Now!

    The Andes dominate much of Chile, including the breath-taking Torres del Paine National Park (pictured). However, the country also hosts the world's driest desert and a thriving metropolis. Begin Your Journey!

  • Venezuela!

    Venezuela: Los Roques. Go Now!

    Rooted in Europe, Venezuela boasts an impressive history, culture, and beauty, including the Caribbean Coast (pictured). Explore Venezuela!

  • Bolivia!

    Bolivia: Salt flats. Go Now!

    This hidden gem is full of surprises, from the impressive salt flats (pictured) to the migrating flamingos. It also clings to the most historic indigenous culture on the continent. Explore Bolivia!

Ethnicity, Language, & Religion of Uruguay


Uruguay's population is about 90% European with the rest of the population consisting of people of African descent or mestizos, which are people of both European and Amerindian descent. Of these ethnic Europeans, most are Spanish, but Italian, German, and Portuguese are also common. Most of the people of Uruguay today are a combination of these various ethnicities, but most people have some Spanish in them.


Spanish is the only official language in Uruguay, but "Portunol" and Brazilian are also common in some areas, especially near or along Uruguay's border with Brazil.

Spanish is a Romance language also spoken in Spain; it is closely related to other Romance languages, including Portuguese, Italian, French, Romanian, others. The dialect of Spanish in Uruguay is quite distinct in comparison to that of Spain and there are also many minor differences in the language across Latin America. Portuguese is also a Romance language that is very similar to Spanish and more distantly related French, Italian, Romanian, and others.

"Portunol" is a combination of Spanish and Portuguese, which is not truly a language so much as it is a means of communicating between speakers of the two groups. It tends to be either primarily Spanish or primarily Portuguese, but words from the other language are often interjected due to ease or to assist understanding. In some areas, where there is a mix of Spanish and Portuguese speakers the people often resort to this "language" in order to communicate.


Only about half of Uruguay's population is Roman Catholic, a fairly small number in comparison to neighboring countries. Most of the Catholics in Uruguay are of either Spanish or Italian descent. About 10% of the population is Protestant or follows another form of Christianity and nearly a quarter of the population claim to be another form of Christian or religious in another manner, but are non-denominational. About 15% are atheist or agnostic.

Catholicism is a Christian religion that is one of the first Christian religions and was the most dominant religious force in the Christian world for years. Catholicism believes that there is a single God who created everything, a savior, the son of God, Jesus Christ who is the forgiver of sins, and there is the Holy Spirit, which makes up the last part of the Holy Trinity.

Continue reading on Safari the Globe to Learn the Catholic Church's doctrines, liturgy, symbolism, traditions, & hierarchy

This page was last updated: May, 2014