Iglesia Martiz in Colonia del Sacramento

Wandering through the streets of Colonia del Sacramento I stumbled across a beautiful church called Iglesia Matriz. I quickly took out the information guide that I received from the Hostel to read more about it. It is also called Basílica del Santísimo Sacramento and is the oldest church in Uruguay.

It was built in 1680 but suffered a great deal due to war and/or other reasons. The building itself doesn`t look that old but when you look closer at the entrance you will see parts of the original building and the very old wooden door. The church  was in fact rebuilt many times over the years.

The church looks impressive from the outside with two very high towers. I decided to go inside and have a look. I ran my fingers gently over the dark wooden door. The wood was rich,beautiful and full of history. I wonder where it came from.

The wooden doors in the Iglesia Matriz oldest church in Uruguay

I closed the doors and was surprised to find the church airy and cool inside. It fascinated me in it`s simplicity. No elaborate decorations or statues. Almost like it was stripped to the bone. Yet, beautiful and tranquil. The way I like to see a church.

Places to visit in Colonia del Sacramento,Uruguay

I slowly made my way past the rows and rows of wooden benches to have a look at the altar. I have mentioned before that the church suffered a great deal over the years. Apparently a heavy thunderstorm destroyed part of the structure as well as the altar.

Iglesia Matriz tourist attraction

The antique details in the church is striking. Beautiful wooden boxes were decorating the walls but for me the most striking was the stone column at the back of the church. It gave me a glimpse back in time.

Iglesia Matriz in Colonia del Sacramento Uruguay

Churches in Colonia del Sacarmento

I am really happy I took the time to go inside. The history of Colonia del Sacramento has been recorded in this church in some ways.

Where to find Iglesia Martiz? It is located to the side of the Plaza de Armas, in the historic district of Colonia del Sacramento.

When: 13 November 2012
Where: Colonia del Sacramento,Uruguay

If you want to read more about similar posts click here Churches and Architecture

I have been fortunate to have done quite a bit of travelling over the last 10 years. By heart I am an adventurer and I love exploring new places, cultures and food. Travelling can become stressful and expensive. Over the years I have learnt to travel as cost effective as possible, simply by travelling more clever. Nelmitravel.com is a Adventure and Budget Travel site where I review Airlines, Accommodation, Transport, Restaurants and give helpful travel information.


  1. The Church, though is old does not look very ancient. I must say that it has been taken care of quite well and lucky you to have stumbled across this one. Always a joy to stop by, Nel.

    Joy always,

    1. Hi Susan, I agree! When I saw the church I would never have guessed that it is the oldest in Uruguay. They took great care of it and I am happy to see because most countries don`t get money from the government to restore churches. Thank you for the visit and nice to see you here! Have a blessed day!

  2. Thank you for sharing this Nelieta. I have always had a fascination for old structures that has withstood the ravages of time. This is indeed a beautiful church.

    1. Hi Rimly, thank you so much for the visit. Yes, I love history and old buildings. Spain and Portugal were at war and this is how the church ended up getting damaged. I am happy to see that people took the time to repair it.

Thank you for visiting. Have a fabulous day!

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