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For Amazonian Forests, Lush Beaches and Outstanding Natural Beauty, Visit Venezuela

Aug 17, 2007
Venezuela is positioned at the northern extreme of South America, bordered by Colombia to the West, Brazil to the South, Guyana to the East, and the Caribbean Sea to the North. The country also boasts the World's highest waterfall and has the biggest lake in South America. Venezuela covers an area of a little over 900,000 square kilometers and is divided into 23 states.

Due to its geographical location to the equator, Venezuela's climate has few variations, it comprises of two main seasons wet and dry. The wet season is from May to November and the dry season is from December to April. The temperatures are between 22C and a maximum of 32C, with the average temperature of around 27C. The temperatures are cooler at higher elevations, particularly in the Andes, where jackets are necessary. Throughout the rest of the country, the temperatures do not vary much; Caracas has an average temperature of 24C.

The capital of Venezuela is Caracas, which is situated under the Avila Mountain that has a height of 7,800 ft and is around 3,000 ft above sea level. The beautiful Avila National Park is located on one side of the valley and the rugged and densely populated hills of the southern suburbs are on the other side.

There are several parks in Caracas including; the Parque del Este (East Park) which is one of the more popular parks with joggers who are often seen running before dawn. It has a small zoo and artificial lagoons to go rowing in. The Los Caobos Park is filled with beautiful trees, the fountain Venezuela and there is a magnificent sculpture of the Venezuelan writer Teresa de La Parra. The Jardin Botanico, which belongs to Venezuela's central University has many species of vegetation, it is located south of Los Caobos Park.

The Canaima National Park is located in the south-east of Bolivar State, in an area called Gran Sabana around 225 km from the Orinoco River. Ancient Tepuys, table-top mountains command position amongst the jungle and savannas in the area, offering unique ecosystems that are inhabited by endemic vegetation and animal species. One of the most natural wonders of Venezuela is the Salto Angel (Angel Falls) which are located in the Canaima National Park. It is the highest free-falling waterfall in the World at 3,212ft with an uninterrupted drop of 2,421 ft.

The National Park Archipelago Los Roques is located In the Caribbean Sea, 176 Km north of Caracas. It is one of the largest marine national parks of the Caribbean with remarkably glorious white sand beaches, and colorful crystal clear warm waters. It comprises of 50 islands, islets and coralline keys. Mangroves and coral formations occupy a lagoon surrounded by Los Roques. El Gran Roque Island is home to around 150 fishermen and their families.

The Delta del Orinoco is a must for river enthusiasts; it is one of the World's largest delta regions. This vast mainly swamp area is covered by one of the most dense, complex and diverse jungles in the world, inhabited by an abundance of tropical fauna and birds monkeys, reptiles, river dolphins, otters and fish. The Warao Indians live alongside the rivers in what is known as palafitte communities, they Fish, hunt, gather fruit and produce traditional craftwork.

El Avila was declared a National Park in 1960 and is popular with local hikers and fitness enthusiasts. There is around 200km of walking trails and the majority of them are well signposted. There are a dozen entrances that lead into the park from Caracas; all start from Avenida Boyaca, commonly known as Cota Mil. No matter which way you decide to use, a short climb takes you to a guard post, which is where you will pay a small entrance fee to the park. Information and maps containing marked trails and such are available.

Scuba diving opportunities are fantastic in Venezuela, which has the longest coastline in the Caribbean. The three marine National Parks Los Roques, Mochima and Morrocoy present dives for both experienced and novice divers. There are some stunning drop-offs, beautiful colored coral formations, and a range of marine life, caverns and old shipwrecks ready to explore.

Margarita Island is located 38 km north east of the Venezuela mainland with easy access by ferry and air-plane. The Island is divided into two parts that are linked by a 24km sand bank which separates the sea from La Restinga Lagoon National Park. There are around 167 km of shoreline offering an abundance of gorgeous pristine beaches and as the island is small only 28 miles at its widest point and just 80 miles long, it is simple to get around and if you wanted to, you could visit a different beach every day.

The average temperature on the Island is 27C and the yearly precipitation averages 27 inches giving mainly dry landscapes with some wooded areas and fertile valleys. The majority of the 300,000 populous inhabit the eastern side of the Island, where the capital of Asuncion and the shoppers haven of Porlamar are situated. The Macanao Peninsula is located on the western side of the Island. It is thinly populated and because the availability of water is limited, it has seen little development in its tourism infrastructure.
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