Soccer is the national sport and occupies a central place in the life of the nation.
The entire population is united behind the national combined team, but fans' allegiance is divided among the rival local teams (Peñarol and nacional are the most popular ones).
The many beaches are an important tourist attraction.
About half of the population lives in the capital, Montevideo, and its metropolitan area. The second largest city, Salto, has ninety thousand inhabitants. As a result of emigration, there could be as many people of Uruguayan descent living outside as inside the country.
It is present in the four horizontal stripes of the flag that alternate with five white ones (a sun with a face in the upper corner also symbolizes independence).
It is also the color worn by the national soccer team.
Most of the country consists of gently rolling plains interrupted by two ridges of low hills.
The remainder consists of fertile coastal and riverine lowlands, including a narrow sandy and marshy coastal plain.