Mercedes stands on the banks of the winding Rio Negro River, 280km southeast of the coastal city of Montevideo. Most visitors to the city enjoy the picturesque palm tree lined waterfront promenade, which has a selection of shops and eateries. It is also popular for water activities such as boating and fishing. One of the city's main attractions is the Viscount of Maua's Castle, which offers large lawns and a winery. There are many affordable mid-range Mercedes hotels.
Feast of the Epiphany, this Catholic festival, known locally as Epifania, is attached to the Christmas season and is a celebration of the arrival of the Maji at the stable where Christ was born. Uruguayans across the country enjoy a public holiday.