Uruguay won its independence following a four way struggle between Spain, Portugal, Argentina and Brazil. On various rankings, it scores highly for democracy, peace, lack of corruption, and press freedom. It also ranks highly in Social Progress for tolerance and inclusion. The Charrúa people are estimated to have moved South to the area about 4000 years ago. The Portuguese arrived about 500 years ago in 1512. The Spanish in 1516. They took the short cut via the sea rather than the thousands of years by land. Now around 88% of the inhabitants claim European descent. About a quarter of the 3.4 million citizens are of Italian origin.
Short cut by Sea