A museum located NOT in the old city, but in a residential area, is dedicated to cannabis. Yes, that is true. Uruguay legalized marijuana in 2013 along with gay marriage; they had legalized abortion two years earlier.
The museum is in a good sized house, and entrance is gained by joining for 200 pesos (about $7.) There is no way to simply visit. My membership can be given to any adult, I will probably contribute it to one of the desk staff at the hotel. The owner is an agronomist so there is a great deal of info on plants and their various uses, hemp shown in many guises, the tree from which mate is made (not a drink for me) and info on their traditional as well as modern uses.
Some modern cannabis preparations are not available (not certain whether they are allowed) such as oils and tinctures. Also there is a limit to the strength in the pot available from drug stores. A person is allowed an amount, and it can be piked up weekly, no stashing a 6 months supply.
One of the displays shows the marijuana law as following a tradition of granting human rights. Not said is the reality that boundaries are set in the law as well.
One surprise was the inclusion of a book covering uses of hemp. There is work going on to use hemp in concrete fro light mess and insulation. I knew that it is being used for insulation and for producing plastic panels, but the concrete use was new to me. (Apologies or the window glare)
Medicinal uses as well as spiritual uses in rituals were written about in panels. The place smelled like Bolinas in the late 60’s.
The idea is to create a community, the museum has a charming second floor overlooking the garden icy is outfitted as a living room. Although most of folks there were of the male persuasion, there were girls in groups of 2 or 3 as well upstairs. There is a bar that’s serves water, juice and beer. And it has the first draft beer I have seen here – some of which I tested. The brewery is from the north of the country and it was quite nice.