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Venezuela is a country in South America. Possessing shorelines on the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, Venezuela borders Colombia to the west, Guyana to the east and Brazil to the south, and is situated on the major sea and air routes linking North and South America. Off the Venezuelan coast are also to be found the Caribbean island states of Aruba, the Netherlands Antilles and Trinidad and Tobago.

The Angel Falls (Churun Meru) in the Guiana Highlands is the world's highest waterfall and one of Venezuela?s major tourist attractions.


  • Andes - Moutainous and picturesque, this region is made up of the states of M?rida, T?chira and Trujillo.
  • Caribbean Islands - With more than 600 islands or smaller formations, many of the best beaches can be found here.
  • Central - The most populous part of Venezuela enjoys great beaches and big cities, from Caracas and the nearby commuter towns in Miranda and Vargas out to the states of Aragua and Carabobo.
  • Guayana - The immense and largely uninhabited area south of the Orinoco River, which makes up around half of Venezuela's national territory, includes rainforest in Amazonas, table-top mountaints in the Gran Sabana and Bol?var state, and the flat marshlands extending out in the Orinoco Delta.
  • Los Llanos - Vast open plains, home to cattle-ranching and amazing wildlife, made up of the states of Apure, Barinas, Cojedes, Gu?rico and Portuguesa.
  • Northeast - Stunning deserted beaches in Anzo?tegui and Sucre, as well as hills and caves in Monagas state.
  • Northwest - Rich with oil from Zulia state, the northwest also boasts more beaches in Falc?n and lush agricultural countryside in Yaracuy and Lara.


  • Barquisimeto
  • Caracas - the capital.
  • Ciudad Bolivar - stop-off point for flights to Angel Falls, and a comfortable stoppover on the way to Brazil.
  • Ciudad Guayana - dominated by heavy industry, it is Venezuela?s most organized city and the main gateway to the Orinoco Delta and the Gran Sabana.
  • Coro - the first capital of Venezuela and a city of rich colonial architecture and tourist attractiveness
  • Maracaibo - Venezuela's second city, swelteringly hot and built on oil.
  • Maracay - once the capital of Venezuela, now home to the main military garrison.
  • M?rida - a charming university town in the Andes mountains, popular for outdoor activities.
    Puerto La Cruz - the main access point for many beaches in eastern Venezuela.
  • Valencia - an affluent industrial city.

Venezuela is home to the world's highest waterfall, Angel Falls and the second longest river in South America, the Orinoco. It also has the longest Caribbean coastline. Venezuela is the world's fifth-largest oil exporter and also has vast untapped reserves of natural gas. The country is also famous for its beautiful women, with more Miss World and Miss Universe titles than any other nation.

Venezuela was one of the three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Colombia in 1830 (the others being Colombia and Ecuador). For most of the first half of the 20th century, Venezuela was ruled by military strongmen, who promoted the oil industry and allowed for some social reforms. Democratically-elected governments have held sway since 1958.

Spanish is the official language of Venezuela, accompanied by numerous indigenous dialects (usually never heard except in the Amazon region). Note that English is not commonly spoken or even understood, even in the major cities (including Caracas). However, it is usually worth a try attempting to speak in English as most English-speaking locals will usually help you if they hear you, whereas care must be taken in not doing so near dodgy-looking strangers as a safety precaution.


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