Montevideo

The Very Loyal and Reconquering City
of San Felipe y Santiago de Montevideo
Collage Landmarks of Montevideo.jpg
Coat of arms of Montevideo
Coat of arms
Motto(s): 
Con libertad ni ofendo ni temo
With liberty I offend not, I fear not.
Montevideo is located in Uruguay
Montevideo
Montevideo
Montevideo is located in South America
Montevideo
Montevideo
Coordinates: 34°53′1″S 56°10′55″W / 34.88361°S 56.18194°W / -34.88361; -56.18194Coordinates: 34°53′1″S 56°10′55″W / 34.88361°S 56.18194°W / -34.88361; -56.18194
CountryUruguay
DepartmentMontevideo
Founded1724
Founded byBruno Mauricio de Zabala
Government
 • TypeStrong mayor[1]
 • IntendantChristian di Candia (FA)
Area
 • Capital city201 km2 (77.5 sq mi)
 • Metro
1,640 km2 (633 sq mi)
 The department area is 530 square kilometres (200 sq mi) and the conurbated built-up area 350 square kilometres (140 sq mi).[5]
Elevation
43 m (141 ft)
Population
 (2011 Census)[6]
 • Density6,726/km2 (17,421/sq mi)
 • Urban
1,719,453
 • Metro
1,947,604[3][4]
 • Department
1,319,108
Demonymsmontevideano (m)
montevideana (f) Montevidean (English)[7]
Time zoneUTC−3 (UYT)
Postal code
11#00 & 12#00
Dial plan(+598) 2XXX XXXX
HDI (2017)0.841[8]very high

Montevideo (Spanish pronunciation: [monteβiˈðeo]) is the capital and largest city of Uruguay. According to the 2011 census, the city proper has a population of 1,319,108 (about one-third of the country's total population)[9] in an area of 201 square kilometres (78 sq mi). The southernmost capital city in the Americas, Montevideo is situated on the southern coast of the country, on the northeastern bank of the Río de la Plata.

The city was established in 1724 by a Spanish soldier, Bruno Mauricio de Zabala, as a strategic move amidst the Spanish-Portuguese dispute over the platine region. It was also under brief British rule in 1807. Montevideo is the seat of the administrative headquarters of Mercosur and ALADI, Latin America's leading trade blocs, a position that entailed comparisons to the role of Brussels in Europe.[10]

The 2019 Mercer's report on quality of life, rated Montevideo first in Latin America,[11] a rank the city has consistently held since 2005.[12][13][14][15][16] As of 2010, Montevideo was the 19th largest city economy in the continent and 9th highest income earner among major cities.[17] In 2020, it has a projected GDP of $49.7 billion, with a per capita of $28,385.[18]

In 2018, it was classified as a beta global city ranking eighth in Latin America and 84th in the world.[19] Montevideo hosted every match during the first FIFA World Cup, in 1930. Described as a "vibrant, eclectic place with a rich cultural life",[20] and "a thriving tech center and entrepreneurial culture",[15] Montevideo ranked eighth in Latin America on the 2013 MasterCard Global Destination Cities Index.[21]

In 2014, it was also regarded as the fifth most gay-friendly metropolis in the world and the first in Latin America.[22][23] It is the hub of commerce and higher education in Uruguay as well as its chief port. The city is also the financial hub of Uruguay and the cultural anchor of a metropolitan area with a population of around 2 million.

Etymology

There are several explanations about the word Montevideo. All agree that "Monte" refers to the Cerro de Montevideo, the hill situated across the Bay of Montevideo, but there is disagreement about the etymological origin of the "video" part.[24]

Cerro de Montevideo as seen from the city, in 1865.