Artigas is the capital of the Artigas Department of Uruguay. The name Artigas comes from that of the national hero, Jose Gervasio Artigas, who fought for the emancipation of the River Plate, and sought to create a federative nation from these colonies. It is located in the north of Uruguay, on the border with Brazil, separated only by a bridge from the town Quaraí of the state Rio Grande do Sul of Brazil. Artigas is the farthest city from Uruguay's capital Montevideo, being 600 kilometres (370 mi) away.
Artigas is renowned for its Amethyst mines. The city is served by Artigas International Airport