25 main attractions in Venezuela.
Venezuela abounds with national parks and cozy Caribbean beaches. The unique landscapes in the protected areas are amazingly diverse. The unique sandstone rocks showcase impregnable steep slopes adorned with a multitude of waterfalls.
Orinoco’s overgrown banks preserve a rich flora – numerous trees covered with fruit, liana-like ferns and exotic flowers. Evergreen mangroves harbor a variety of strange species of animals and birds. And the fresh waters of Venezuela’s rivers are home to many rare reptiles and amphibians.
Venezuela’s marvelous coastlines are worth a visit to appreciate the rich underwater world. Beach lovers, once on the fine white sand, will fall in love with the fabulous coves and Caribbean lagoons forever. When visiting this South American country, be sure to try the local cocoa and chocolate. Don’t forget about the tropical fruits, which are abundant in Venezuela.
What to see in Venezuela?
The most interesting and beautiful places, pictures and short description.
The highest waterfall can be found in the impenetrable tropical wilderness of Venezuela. The stream of water rushes down from the flat-topped Devil’s Mountain in the Canaima National Park. After surpassing 978 meters in height, the water breaks into tiny particles of mist that spreads for miles around. The unique landmark can only be approached by water or air.
This natural wonder is called the Lighthouse of Maracaibo, after the name of the lake over whose waters the phenomenon occurs. The light from regular discharges can be seen from 400 km away from the delta of the Catacumbo river which flows into the lake. Endless Venezuelan storm lasts up to 200 days each year. The phenomenon is caused by a marshy area producing methane.
Morrocoi National Park
The beauty of the local landscape in the blue lagoons, amazing coral islands, wild mangrove forests and luxurious beaches. Venezuela’s protected northwest coast has become a haven for rare reptiles, large sea turtles, pelicans, flamingos and other feathered birds. The perfectly calm sea is a real find for divers who want to enjoy the unique marine fauna.
The picturesque Caribbean coast welcomes tourists with cozy beaches, mesmerizing coves and shady coconut palms. The proximity of the Henri Piete National Park allows you to see rare parrots, hummingbirds, spider monkeys, and other inhabitants of the mountain jungle.
Santa Ana de Coro
Founded by the Spaniard Ampies in the sixteenth century, the town was repeatedly plundered by pirates. But its advantageous location has always facilitated its quick recovery. Now a quiet colonial Coro attracts tourists with many cathedrals and churches, ancient colonial mansions, cozy streets and spacious squares. Some museums showcase the rich heritage of the centuries-old town.
Medanos National Park
Uncharacteristic for northwestern Venezuela, sand dunes cover the entire area of the national park. The moving hills are up to 40 meters high. It is possible to travel across the sandy terrain on camels that have been brought here especially for this purpose. Rare rains help only the few shrubs survive. But lagoons formed by rainfall can sometimes be found among the desert slopes.
The pleasant fresh air along with the great diversity of animal and plant life attracts plenty of tourists to the tropical paradise of the watery expanses. Red-book crocodiles and endangered freshwater dolphins live here. Boat rides on the local curiae boats allow you to get up close and personal with the unique fauna.
Mochima National Park
Mochima Marine Park is interesting with exotic animals and plants. Those who are fond of diving will find an outlet in the many coral reefs, sunken ships and caves. Those who prefer beach vacations are sure to appreciate the azure beaches, including the famous Colorado with its inimitable golden-red sand.
The record-breaker among Venezuelan islands has been nicknamed the pearl of the Caribbean Sea. Discovered by Columbus, the island was named Princess of Austria. Its dry, sunny climate beckons tourists to its marvelous beaches and mountains of ineffable beauty. Margarita houses two national parks with bizarre parrots, flamingos and other feathered birds.
General Rafael Urdaneta Bridge
The impressive concrete structure spans the strait connecting the Gulf of Venezuela to the thundering Lake Maracaibo. The total length of the bridge, designed by Riccardo Morandi, is more than eight and a half kilometers. The cable-stayed bridge was named after the political and military figure born in the city of Maracaibo.
The shores of Maracaibo are home to about 20 percent of the population of Venezuela. The common illumination of the locals in the form of incessant lightning attracts tourists. Maracaibo hides oil deposits in its marshy shores, which have made the region industrially important. The lake is surrounded by cacao plantations, and howler monkeys crawl in the nearby rainforest thickets.
Constantly shrouded in white clouds, the flat mountain seems like a guest from a fantasy world. The tepuis, aka table mountains, are made of sandstone, which, when eroded, form bizarre shapes. The peat bogs of Roraima are overgrown with beautiful flowers and interesting trees. Most of the animals living on the plateau are endemic.
El Yaque Beach.
You could not find a more perfect place to go surfing. The southern coast of Venezuela’s Margarita Island offers the best weather conditions for beginners and advanced surfers alike. The strong wind blowing on the beach creates an ideal climate for windsurfing and kitesurfing. The coast’s restless, busy life attracts thousands of tourists with friendly beach parties.
Aerial tramway in Mérida
Enjoy the view of Venezuela from a mesmerizing height for a two-hour ride from Merida to the top of Espejo. There is no other ropeway in the world that is as high or as long as this one. The journey offers spectacular mountain scenery and stops on the cable car will take you on a stroll through the amazing scenery.
The highest point in Venezuela is named after Simón Bolívar, who fought for the independence of his homeland. The five-kilometer peak is accessible to every tourist, who can use the cable car to the neighboring peak Espejo. Those who want to get directly to Bolivar Peak will have to walk, contemplating the marvelous beauty of the eastern Cordilleras.
Los Roques Archipelago
Four large islands along with 350 small islands in the Caribbean Sea, as if for diving enthusiasts. The islands of the archipelago are protected from the strong currents by a system of coral reefs, included in the national park. The seclusion of this place allows tourists to see the Caribbean islands in pristine condition, enjoying the shallow sandy lagoons and the richness of the aquatic world.
Los Llanos Plains.
A plains area with an intertropical climate that has a wealth of animals, reptiles, and birds of all kinds occupying one-third of Venezuela. Wildlife connoisseurs can appreciate local boat safaris, horseback riding, piranha or saber-toothed paiyar fishing. Hunting enthusiasts have the opportunity to defeat an anaconda or caiman.
Canaima National Park.
The main treasure of Canaima is the unique flat-topped mountains, the tepuis. The structure of the table giants is unusual because of karst processes. Unique stone plateaus with steep slopes are hung with marvelous ribbons of waterfalls. The amazing nature of the national park is one of the oldest on the planet. The rich fauna and flora contain mostly endemic species.
Pantheon of Venezuela
The burial place of the Venezuelan hero Simon Bolivar and many honorable figures of the country is located in the northern part of Caracas. The pantheon building holds about 2 thousand paintings telling the life of the great liberator. And in the central nave you can find the bronze sarcophagus of Bolívar. There are also monuments to many great Venezuelan celebrities in the halls.
Lake Valencia (Tacarigua)
A popular resort lake in northern Venezuela, it is the second largest, behind Maracaibo. The fertile soils of the reservoir’s northern shore have led to the cultivation of cane, cotton, and coffee trees. Numerous islands of Valencia delight tourists with rich wildlife.
Henri Pittier National Park.
The oldest Venezuelan park was founded to preserve the unique ecosystems in 1937. The area is divided into a mountainous area with 9 major rivers and a resort coast with enclosed quiet bays and azure beaches. The protected area is an important source of fresh water for local residents.
Park La Loovisna.
In northeastern Venezuela, near the picturesque Caroni River, amazing landscapes extend – forested areas successfully alternate with meadows full of murmuring streams of water, and wildlife harmoniously alternates with developed recreational areas.
El Guacharo Cave
A karst cavity in a limestone hill gets its name from its feathered inhabitants. The fruiting guajaro birds nest in the cave, leaving the shelter only to feed at night. The walls of the cave are decorated with natural paintings created by mixing chalk, sandstone, and limestone.
Sierra Nevada National Park
The local area attracts climbers with its high mountain ranges. Evergreen tropical thickets are replaced by bamboo and low-growing ferns, which with altitude are replaced by hulk steppes and, finally, by perpetual ice. The park gets its name from the Cordillera de Merida, a ridge permanently covered with snow.
Puerto Cruz Beach
The port city of Venezuela, nestled on the Caribbean coast, is one of the most visited in the state of Anzoategui. Tourists rush to visit the marvelous local beach surrounded by the protected nature of the Mochima Park. The sandy shore and the rich underwater world make it possible to forget the city traffic and enjoy the pristine nature.
Complete the article by describing your impression of the city (country) or individual attraction.
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Top 25 attractions in Venezuela
Venezuela is a beautiful and distinctive country located in the northern part of South America. It is an oasis of pristine nature with beautiful forests, picturesque mountains, rushing rivers and waterfalls.
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Who Should Come to Venezuela and Why?
In pre-Columbian times, Venezuela was inhabited by tribes of Indians fishing, hunting, and farming. Spanish conquistadors who sailed to South America quickly conquered the local population and founded Valencia, Caracas, and Merida. The colonizers built houses of brick and stone, covered the windows with patterned metal bars, and added small balconies. Later came the Neo-Gothic and Classical style buildings, all of which have survived to this day.
Venezuela is famous for its unique natural attractions. Highland meadows, relict trees, rivers and lakes await the tourist. Monkeys, deer, porcupines, and rare birds are easy to find among the pristine nature. Crocodiles and turtles live in the rivers. This place attracts people who love an active lifestyle. If you come here, you can go hiking in interesting places. One of the most popular routes is Mount Roraima. When you travel to it you will see magnificent waterfalls, green hills, ferns and lianas.
Its favorable geographical location makes Venezuela interesting for beach lovers. The country, bathed by the Caribbean Sea, attracts with clear blue water, white sand, mango bushes in the coastal zone. Good beaches are in the Mochima Park, the Paria Peninsula, the town of Puerto Colombia and Margarita Island.
The country has been in a severe economic crisis for several years, so when planning a trip, weigh the pros and cons. It is best to buy a tour from reputable operators and stay in good hotels. Do not forget to bring a first aid kit, mosquito repellent and necessary vaccinations.
Caracas’ central square is named after Simon Bolivar, Venezuela’s national hero. The picturesque place, surrounded by government buildings, is the heart of the city. In the center of the square is a statue of Bolivar on a horse. It is surrounded by a small park with fountains.
Caracas is the official residence of the president. A spacious bright mansion of the 19th century is the White House of Venezuela. The interior is decorated with rare furniture, bronze lamps, mirrors made of rock crystal. The palace itself is surrounded by a garden and has a marble fountain and statues in its courtyard.
Organized tours are allowed to Miraflores. Tourists are shown the presidential archives, a hall decorated with Peruvian gold, and the cabinet of the Council of Ministers.
Monastery of San Francisco.
The entire architectural complex was erected in Valencia by the Spanish conquistadors in the XVII century. It included a monastery building, a church, a hospital, outbuildings, and a house where monks were taught to read and write in Latin.
In the XIX century, the monastery was closed and converted into an educational institution. At different times there was a university, a college for boys and a lyceum. Now the territory of the monastery is recognized as a historical monument. A branch of Carabobo University and a library work there.
The Palace of the National Assembly
The famous historic building of Caracas was erected in 1872 by order of President Guzmán Blanco. The snow-white mansion is decorated with a huge gilded dome, columns, and arched windows.
Under the dome of the palace can be seen the famous painting by Martin Tovar y Tovar, which depicts the battle of Carabobo. The spacious halls display paintings by famous Venezuelan artists: Jacinto Emilio Mauri, Antonio Herrera, Tito Salas.
A historic monument erected at the end of the 18th century, it is a striking representative of colonial architecture. Its facade is clad in light marble and is embellished with columns and pilasters. The central building is adjoined by two bell towers, one of which hangs a round clock.
Tourists and parishioners can admire the murals on the walls, which depict Jesus Christ, the Virgin Mary and St. John, see the ancient crucifix and paintings by Spanish artists.
Church of St. Francis
In the center of Caracas stands the Catholic Church, which is more than 400 years old. In the 17th century an earthquake destroyed part of the building, but after the reconstruction the church is even bigger and more beautiful.
The church, built in the neoclassical style, is a national monument and cultural landmark of Caracas. In front of it grows the sacred seiba tree, which is more than 150 years old.
The construction of the main cathedral of Mérida began in 1805 and lasted almost 150 years. The inauguration took place in 1958. The majestic building is shaped like a Latin cross, has a huge dome and five naves.
The interior is fascinating with colorful paintings on the walls, exquisite stained glass windows, columns, openwork arches. In 1974 Pope Pius VI transferred the relics of St. Clement to this cathedral.
The Mosque of Caracas
Opened in Caracas in 1993, the mosque is the largest Islamic cultural center in Latin America. Construction was under the patronage of Ibrahim bin Abdulaziz and was overseen by the president of Venezuela.
The elegant mosque has become a real jewel of the city. The minaret is about 113 meters high and the dome is 23 meters. The mosque has rooms for prayers, halls for celebrations and lectures. Those who wish can visit the library and enroll in an Islamic school.
San Cristobal Cathedral
In the historic center of the town of Barcelona, capital of the Venezuelan state of Anzoategui, rises the Cathedral of San Cristobal, built in the 18th century. The white elegant building is decorated with arches and columns. Nearby stands a tall bell tower on which there is an antique clock.
The miraculous icon of “Our Lady of Mercy of Barcelona” is kept in the cathedral. Under the main altar, the relics of several saints are preserved: the martyr Celestine, Severin of Norwich, Facunda and Pascual Baylon.
Galleries and Museums of Venezuela
Museum of Fine Arts
The Museum of Fine Arts opened in Caracas, preserving the historical heritage of Venezuela. The collection contains more than 5 thousand works of art. Among the exhibits are many samples of European and Latin American painting.
Engravings by Francisco Goya, canvases by Alexander Calder and Alejandro Otero attract close attention. Chinese ceramics, Buddha figures, porcelain, ancient tapestries and ancient manuscripts are exhibited in separate halls.
At the beginning of this century, a modern three-level building was erected for the National Gallery in Caracas. It houses exhibition halls, an art store, and rest rooms. Tours show indigenous rock art, paintings by Armando Reverón and other Venezuelan artists of the 19th and 20th centuries.
Museum of the Revolution
The Museum of Military History in Caracas is simultaneously the mausoleum of Hugo Chavez, president of Venezuela. The exhibits on display tell about the bloody war with Spain for independence, illuminate the revolution of 1858 and the stages of the civil war.
In the museum you can study documents from those years, see military uniforms, banners, and weapons. The museum and the memorial complex with the sarcophagus of Hugo Chavez are visited by hundreds of people every day.
In the southeastern part of Venezuela there is a unique place – Canaima National Park. Its vast territory preserves pristine South American nature: tropical forests, flat-topped mountains, waterfalls, and rushing rivers.
The park is away from roads and major population centers. Transportation here is mostly airplanes, helicopters, and canoes. There are hiking trails in the jungle where tourists are guided by locals.
Within Medanos Park you can see the desert, salt marshes, and sand dunes. It hardly ever rains here, so the flora is poor. Flora is represented by cacti, prickly shrubs, and other succulents.
The national park is home to lizards, hares, foxes, and various species of ants and snakes. Tourists who want to see the attraction are brought to the desert by buses. From there, they begin the journey on camels with a guide.
Henri Pittier National Park.
Henri Pittier Park runs through mountainous terrain and covers almost 108,000 hectares. It can be conventionally divided into two parts. The first part contains mountains riddled with gorges and rivers. Numerous bird populations live there, including rare and endangered species.
The second part is the coastal zone, attracting tourists with beautiful bays, sandy beaches and tropical trees. The reserve was created to protect the ecology and preserve the sources of drinking water in Venezuela.
Around Caracas stretches a mountain range that is part of El Ávila National Park. The reserve attracts climbers and nature lovers who prefer long walks in the fresh air. There is a hiking trail through the entire area, covering many hills and gorges.
One of the best national parks in Venezuela, El Guacharo is located on the mountain slopes of the Sierra Cumana. There is a famous stalactite cave, 10 km long.
It is home to a species of carnivorous birds unknown to science. They nest in the gallery and leave at night to feed in the forest. Near the cave installed a statue of Alexander Humboldt and opened a museum named after the famous naturalist.
Margarita Island is part of the province of Venezuela along with the islets of Cubagua and Coche. It is one of the main resorts of the country. Because of its dry, hot climate, sandy beaches and green hills, Margarita is considered the pearl of the Caribbean Sea.
Here are built comfortable hotels and inexpensive pensions. Active tourists go fishing, sailing, surfing. Among lush tropical greenery one can meet monkeys, flamingos, parrots.
Venezuela’s most famous natural monument is the Angel Falls. It can be found in the tropical jungle on Mount Auyang-Tepui in the Canaima National Park. Giant streams of water with great force fall down and give rise to the river Kerep.
The Angel Falls are about 1 km high. It is rightly considered the largest on earth. To get there, you need to buy a tour. The price includes sending tourists to the village of Canaima, a canoe trip on the river, a passage through the jungle and equipment.
There is a mountain in Canaima Park that rises 3,000 kilometers. It has a pyramidal symmetrical shape. A trail leads to the peak of Roraima, which can be overcome in a few days.
Along the way travelers meet deep caves, gorges, and mountain streams. At the top of the plateau opens up an area of 34 km ², above which always hangs a white cloud. Drosera, orchids, and ferns grow on the mountain.
Located in a depression between two mountain ranges, the largest lake in South America has an area of 13,210 km². Large oil reserves are found in its basin.
Active production has been underway since the beginning of 1914. This place is famous for a unique natural phenomenon. Where the Catatumbo River flows into Lake Maracaibo, multiple lightning regularly appears. The phenomenon is most often seen at night from May to October.
The Aquamania water park is open in the city park of Maracaibo. It is a true paradise for children and adults with rides and recreational areas. The park features high slides with different slope levels, water cannons, and pools for kids.
There are fountains, artificial waterfalls and swings on the territory of the complex. Those who wish can have lunch in a restaurant, relax under umbrellas and buy souvenirs in the stores.
Aerial tramway in Mérida
The city of Merida is built in a valley between the ridges of the Cordillera de Merida mountain system. It has one of the longest cableways in the world. The total length of the route is 12.5 km. It begins from the Barinitas area and ends at Mount Espejo.
Riding is best done in the morning before the clouds form hiding the mountain ranges. On the way you can get a good view of Bolivar Peak, the highest mountain in Venezuela.
In 2002, a botanical garden of 44 hectares appeared in Mérida. It contains plants from all over Venezuela. Tourists can admire trees that can withstand severe drought, aquatic plants, evergreen tropical ferns, lianas, and broadleaf grasses.
The botanical garden grows camellias, orchids, roses, and medicinal plants. Mammals and birds live within the garden, and its streams are home to turtles, newts, and small fish.
The Zoological Park in Caracas covers 360 hectares. The area is divided into zones. Very popular are: the forest of monkeys, the African plain, the lagoon of birds and the area of cats. The park also has a special area where people can come into contact with animals. There you can feed birds, goats, rabbits, pet monkeys, horses and take great photos.