Just You launches travel trade solo experience

Just You launches travel trade solo experience

Friday, 21 October 2016 14:00

Just You h...

Spontaneous people are happier according to Snaptrip survey

Spontaneous people are happier according…

Friday, 21 October 2016 11:00

Spontaneous people are often believed to lead more exciting or glamorous lifestyles and a new study has confirmed that they are happier in all aspects of their lives.

Top Brighton attractions on Combi-Saver tickets for half term

Top Brighton attractions on Combi-Saver …

Friday, 21 October 2016 09:00

Visitors to Brighton this October half term can save up to 20% on its top three paid-for attractions with combination tickets now available for British Airways i360, SEA LIFE Brighton...

Free cabin upgrades with Cosmos Tours

Free cabin upgrades with Cosmos Tours

Thursday, 20 October 2016 14:00

There still’s time for agents to book a Croisieurope river cruise for their customers with a free cabin upgrade on a range of river cruises throughout Europe, when booked with...

Last minute autumn breaks available at Haven

Last minute autumn breaks available at H…

Thursday, 20 October 2016 11:00

Agents can still give their customers a last minute family break this autumn from £99 when booking a Haven holiday between now and November 5.

Skiers urged to head east for best piste costs reveals new report

Skiers urged to head east for best piste…

Thursday, 20 October 2016 08:00

Cash-conscious skiers can avoid the slippery slope of higher prices for their annual downhill trip by heading to ski resorts in Eastern Europe.

Design an anniversary poster for DFDS competition

Design an anniversary poster for DFDS co…

Wednesday, 19 October 2016 14:00

Ferry operator, DFDS, is putting out a call to professional and amateur artists to create a poster that will be used in their 150th anniversary celebrations this year.

Savings on worldwide adventures with Explore

Savings on worldwide adventures with Exp…

Wednesday, 19 October 2016 11:00

Explore has launched a new collection of worldwide adventures with a launch offer of up to 10% discount on all new trips booked by November 7.

New route to Seattle makes it one to watch for 2017

New route to Seattle makes it one to wat…

Wednesday, 19 October 2016 09:12

Seattle is expected to be one of the fastest growing US destinations for UK travellers next year with a Virgin Atlantic direct non-stop daily flight launching March 2017, new hotel...

Air Transat launches 2017 programme with increased connections across Canada

Air Transat launches 2017 programme with…

Tuesday, 18 October 2016 14:04

Air Transat has expanded its programme of flights from the UK to Canada with increased capacity and connections for travel in 2017.

Oceania Cruises reduces single supplement fares

Oceania Cruises reduces single supplemen…

Tuesday, 18 October 2016 14:02

Oceania Cruises has launched a reduced single supplement promotion for solo travellers, with guests offered single supplements fares from 25% on seven itineraries, booked before December 31.

Mall of America welcomes arrival of MythBusters

Mall of America welcomes arrival of Myth…

Tuesday, 18 October 2016 14:00

Running throughout autumn until January 15, 2017, visitors can ignite their curiosity and discover whether they can really huff and puff to blow a house down; if running in the...

Emirates to launch new daily service to Fort Lauderdale

Emirates to launch new daily service to …

Monday, 17 October 2016 11:00

Emirates has announced that it will launch a daily service between Dubai and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, on December 15, serving the South Florida area, including Fort Lauderdale, Miami and...

New tours in UK & Europe from Back-Roads Touring

New tours in UK & Europe from Back-R…

Monday, 17 October 2016 08:42

Small group tour specialist Back-Roads Touring has launched its summer 2017 brochure to reveal a unique line up of new itineraries in Switzerland, Scandinavia, the Baltics, France, Iberia and Russia.

Star studded cruise line up from CMV in 2017

Star studded cruise line up from CMV in …

Friday, 14 October 2016 10:16

Cruise & Maritime Voyages has announced five star-studded cruises for 2017 following the arrival of its new main brochure.

Non-stop flights to Manchester from SIA

Non-stop flights to Manchester from SIA

Friday, 14 October 2016 10:11

Singapore Airlines will fly non-stop between Singapore and Manchester from October 30 as part of its northern winter schedule.

Venezuela, officially known as the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, is a continental mainland with a selection of islands situated off its coastline in the Caribbean Sea. A former Spanish colony which has been an independent republic since 1821, the destination is considered to be in the Top 20 for the most bio-diverse countries in the world, featuring diverse wildlife across a variety of protected habitats.

The Venezuelan flag consists of three colours; yellow, blue and red, in that order, with yellow standing for land wealth, blue for courage, and red for independence from Spain. The majority of Venezuelans live in the cities of the north, which include the capital Caracas, which is also the largest city, Maracaibo, Valencia, Maracay, Barquisimeto and Ciudad Guayana.

Interestingly, the country is well known for its success in beauty pageants, with Miss Venezuela one of the most popular big events. The destination has also acclaimed a number of titles including five Miss World, five Miss Universe and five Miss International.

Where to stay 

If you take the example of Caracas, then there are a wide variety hotel options for the business traveller or indeed the tourist. If you are on a budget or if you have deeper pockets then there’s something for all tastes – both in the city centre or in the relative tranquility outside the city.

As is to be expected, the difference between two star and three star hotels lies in the larger rooms and the extras. With the four star hotels there is the associated extra amenities and superior quality.

Eating Out

A very Venezuelan way of eating is the areperias which is found on most street corners. It may not look very appealing to western eyes but is a riot of flavour. There is also the mozzarella-like Venezuelan cheese which is worth sampling and the carne asada.


The Venezuelan staples include rice, chicken and yucca (used in much the same way as potatoes). Allied to which are plantains and black beans. The Venezuelan national dish is shredded beef, black beans, rice and fried yucca. 


Shopping forms a social ritual around the abundance of malls which are found in the urban areas. The towns of Isla de Margarita and Porlamar are where shoppers take advantage of the duty free. Visitors are usually taken by the local handicrafts produced by the indigenous craftspeople which include hand-woven baskets, hammocks and devil masks. In Lara both woodwork and blankets are popular buys, while adjacent Cojedes state is a producer of musical instruments including harps, small guitars and maracas.

Other popular purchases include jewellery and you can find these at Hansi which is a large craft department store in El Hatillo, just outside Caracas.


In Venezuela, nightlife is very active and vibrant and includes socialising in bars, lounges and discos. Nightlife activities are one of the major sources of entertainment for the locals and there is no shortage of options for visitors – from the quiet, laid-back bars to the all-action nightclubs. Bars and discos open at around 9pm. and remain open usually until about 2am, although some stay open through the night, with most following suit during a special occasions or festival and the venues are specially decorated at these times.


Caracas City is well-known for its nightlife culture and most clubs and bars can be found in this city. Nightlife activities are also found in three-, four- and five-star hotels.

Main Attractions

Salto Angel or Angel Falls are a popular attraction for those visiting Canaima National Park and at 979m it is one of the world’s highest waterfalls. The best time to visit is during the rainy season, between May and November and either a sightseeing flight or a boat trip offer the best viewing options.

The National Park is itself an attraction covering 3 million hectares and listed as a world heritage site by UNESCO. As well as the falls, the park also encompasses the plateau of La Gran Sabana with over 100 tepuis (table top mountains). These tepuis tower some 1000m above the surrounding savannah landscape

Isla de Margarita, which lies approximately 40km north of the mainland, is one of Venezuela's major tourist destinations. Once two separate islands it is now joined by a sandbank and the island’s main attraction is its beaches which are popular with both tourists and Venezuelans alike. A number of charter flights fly directly to the island from a variety of international destinations. It is also possible to take a ferry to the island from Puerto La Cruz on the mainland.


Gran Roque is the main town on the island of the same name in the Archipiélago of Los Roques. There is a population of around 1,000 in this small fishing town. Boats can be chartered from the waterfront for those who would like to visit the surrounding islands. Particularly interesting are the colourful houses which line the streets and the late nineteenth century lighthouse just outside of the town which gives a great view of the area.


The capital of Venezuela, Caracas, is an attraction in itself. The city was finally founded in 1567 by Europeans after numerous attempts were thwarted by the indigenous Toromaima Indians. A decade later the township became the administrative seat of that colony. Today it is a metropolis of nearly five million and is a modern and busy city. As well as the infra-structure that you would expect of a large city including a metro system and high-rise towers, Caracas also boasts museums, great nightlife, shopping, parks and fine hotels.


Events in Venezuela

January sees the event La Paradura del Niño in the Andean region of Táchira, Mérida and Trujillo, which focuses on Jesus as a child. A procession is held in which the baby in its manger is placed on a large handkerchief and paraded around the town.

Festivals are big news in Venezuela and carnivals are possibly the most celebrated event of them all. An annual Carnival, which has existed in the destination since the colonial period, takes place in February throughout many towns and cities, but more noticeably in the smaller coastal towns and provinces such as El Callao. The Carnival here begins 40 days before Good Friday.

In March Los Tambores de Barlovento takes place to celebrate the beginning of the rain season in Barlovento, Miranda state, which includes the towns of Curiepe, Higuerote, Caucagua and Tacarigua. The celebration is an Afro-Caribbean tradition, where drums are the main theme accompanied by a selection of other instruments, mostly of African origin.

Although Easter is a Catholic festival, it has become a holiday in many destinations abroad. In Venezuela it begins 40 days after Carnival, so its date switches between March and April, officially beginning on Good Friday. On Palm Sunday people visit the church nearest to them to pick up a piece of holy palm.

A religious act, La Cruz de Mayo, takes place in May whereby every cross found in public places in the smaller towns and provinces is decorated with flowers on the third of May. The people of the towns light candles and take them to the cross with offerings and a wish. The celebration that follows varies according to the town's traditions.

How to get around

Be aware that when you travel around Venezuela you are required to carry identification with you. Many roads have military checkpoints on them so if you are moving around by car or bus make sure to keep your passport handy, keep a colour copy also in case your passport gets stolen. It has been known that there is a corrupt element to the military and police authorities in Venezuela. Keep an eye on those officers who check your luggage as they may attempt to plant drugs to obtain a bribe or steal your valuables.

In terms of the train there is no national railway system in Venezuela. In order to get around, then, the options are three-fold; renting a car; using a bus or using a car for hire. For those who favour the first option, bear in mind that Venezuelan drivers have a reputation for being aggressive and unconcerned by the rules of the road. In addition to this, the traffic is horrible. On the flip side, petrol is very cheap and your biggest cost with hiring will be insurance. For pedestrians, it is also worth noting that if you approach a crossing, you do not have the right of way on the road that you might expect at home.

In terms of buses, the system is pretty comprehensive and certainly very affordable. Bus stations are very busy but you will normally be able to find a suitable service to most cities within a short space of time. Even quite long bus journeys of nine hours plus can cost, relatively speaking, pennies. The larger buses are air-conditioned to the point that it is wise to have a blanket in case you get cold. However, it is also prudent that you exercise caution when it comes to personal security as there are sometimes robberies in cities or on highways.

Because of the lack of buses in smaller towns many people choose to use Por Puestos (hire cars), which usually wait to have a full car (four or five passengers) before departing. A one or two hour ride costs approximately US$8 and the cars are identifiable by signage bearing the name of the streets or destinations they typically drive along or stop at. 

Travel within cities is usually via taxi. They are more expensive than any other form of transport, but still affordable when compared to European equivalents. The taxis do not have meters and will charge more at night which is normal, however, all prices are flexible so it is a good idea to negotiate the fare before you leave. The driver considers the tip as part of the fare he is charging and will factor that into his negotiations.


Fast Facts

Location: On the northern coast of South America. The capital is Caracas.

Time: GMT - 4.5 hours

Language: The main language is Spanish although there are at least 40 languages spoken in Venezuela.

Area: 916,445 km²

Population: Approximately 26.5 million.

Religion: The official religion is Catholicism.

Electricity: Venezuela uses a 60 Hz and 120 V power system. Power plugs are the same as those used in North America.

Telephone Code:  +58

Currency: Bolivar

Passport/visa requirements: British passport holders do not need a visa to travel to Venezuela as tourists for up to 90 days, if entering and leaving the country by air. If travelling to Venezuela by land or sea you should apply for a tourist visa beforehand.

Airports: Most international visitors arrive at CaracasAeropuerto Internacional ‘Simón Bolívar’ (www.aeropuerto-maiquetia.com.ve in Spanish) in Maiquetía, 26km from Caracas. Venezuela has several other airports servicing international flights, but these change frequently and unexpectedly. Isla de Margarita’s airport is used by charter flights bringing international package tourists, but few independent travelers fly in here.

Flight time: 9 hours 20 minutes.


Public Holidays- 2009

1 Jan
New Year's Day. 
21-24 Feb
9 Apr Holy Thursday. 
10 Apr 
Good Friday.
19 Apr
Declaration of Independence.
1 May Labour Day.
24 Jun
Battle of Carabobo.
5 Jul
Independence Day.
24 Jul
Birth of Simón Bolívar.
12 Oct
Day of Indigenous Resistance.
25 Dec Christmas Day.

Public Holidays - 2010

1 Jan
New Year's Day. 
13-16 Feb
1 Apr Holy Thursday. 
2 Apr 
Good Friday.
19 Apr
Declaration of Independence.
1 May Labour Day.
24 Jun
Battle of Carabobo.
5 Jul
Independence Day.
24 Jul
Birth of Simón Bolívar.
12 Oct
Day of Indigenous Resistance.
25 Dec Christmas Day.

For more information contact: Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, 1 Cromwell Road, London, SW7 2HW. Tel: 020 7584-4206 or 020 7581-2776 or e-mail: info@venezlon.co.uk



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