The bustling capital of Venezuela, the multimillion-strong Caracas, lies at an altitude of about 1000 m, in a picturesque valley on the northern coast of the country. The city was founded by Captain Diego de Lozada in 1567 and originally bore the name of Santiago de Leon de Caracas, which was composed of the names of the patron saint of Spain – Santiago, governor Pedro Ponce de Leon and the name of the Indian tribal group that inhabited these land – “caracas”. The city was located quite well – from the sea it was reliably protected from pirate attacks by the mountains of El Avila, there were a great many rivers and streams around, and the relatively cool climate and rich soils made it possible to immediately expand the cultivation of cocoa beans here. In 1577 Caracas becomes the capital of the surrounding province and continues to grow rapidly. despite the attack of British pirates in 1595 and the devastating earthquakes of 1755 and 1812. However, the metropolis was not very interested in Venezuela itself, in which neither gold nor silver was found, so Caracas never came close to the grandeur and colonial splendor characteristic of other Latin American cities like Lima, Potosí, Bogota or Santo Domingo. However, the “oil boom” of the late 20th century caused an unprecedented growth of the city – many old quarters were replaced by modern areas of skyscrapers, and narrow streets turned into “avenidas” and “callés” typical for the countries of the region. Today it is a very dynamic and modern city with a population of almost six million people, that is, almost a quarter of all Venezuelans, as well as the largest political and economic center of the country.
Most of the cultural and architectural attractions of Caracas are concentrated in the old part of the city, which is called El Centro here. The area surrounding Plaza Bolivar is replete with historical monuments – on the south side of the square rises the building of the Museum of Caracas, on the ground floor of which the Conchejo Municipal (Municipal Council) is located. The museum’s collection includes numerous paintings and documents related to the struggle for independence and other significant events of the past. On the east side of the square rises a colorful cathedral in the colonial style – Catedral de Caracas (built in 1575, restored in 1666 after the earthquake of 1641). Quite modest, compared to the cathedrals of most other Latin American capitals, Catedral de Caracas reflects the relatively small value of the city and the country for the Spanish crown, and Simón Bolívar’s parents and his wife are buried within the cathedral cemetery, making the place an attractive place for pilgrimage. South of the cathedral, in a former convent building, is the Museo Sacro de Caracas, with an extensive collection of religious art. Also nearby is the residence of the archbishop of Venezuela and the building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the country – Casa Amarilla.
There are also many interesting places around Caracas. First of all, this is the famous Avila National Park, spread along the spurs of the ridge of the same name just north of the city. The uninhabited emerald slopes of Ávila rise above the city like a huge green wave frozen in motion. And just 15 km to the north, behind the ridge, stretches the luxurious Caribbean coast – the focus of beaches and resort areas.
Due to its proximity to the equator, Caracas enjoys a pleasant climate throughout the year; the rainy season lasts from May to September, the dry season lasts from October to April.
Amazonas is the largest state of Venezuela and one of the most ancient territories in the world. It is the least populated area in the country. For example, half of its 120,000 people inhabit the city of Puerto Ayacucho. The northern part of this area smoothly passes into the “Great Plains”, and the east and center belong to the Guiana Highlands, replete with the famous “tepui” and humid equatorial forests.
Amazonas is a state that is completely covered with impenetrable and dense forests. On its territory, it has more than a hundred fairly large rivers and a huge number of small rivers, channels and streams, being the birthplace of the famous Orinoco.
According to rough estimates, it can be said that about 8,000 varieties of plants grow in the state. But also, work is constantly underway to discover new amazing species. The fauna of science annually increases by 5 species thanks to this interesting territory and the work of scientists. The state is home to jaguars, ocelots, tapirs, bears, peccaries, armadillos, a variety of monkeys, caimans, and snakes, including giant anacondas. The “upper floors” of the jungle are inhabited by hummingbirds, toucans, parrots – 680 species of birds.
One of the symbols of Amazonas is Autana – the sacred mountain of the Piaroa Indians, on the top of which, in the labyrinth of caves, the sun’s rays draw fantastic lines intersecting at different angles.
The most ancient tribal groups of the continent “yanomami”, “yekuana”, piaroa” and others (about 70% of all Indian tribes of the country) live in Amazonas; even today they are accustomed to lead a semi-nomadic lifestyle, which is based primarily on gathering and hunting.Sorry, but the opportunity to visit this state is limited by the rugged nature of the amazing places in the state.The only starting point for all tours in the state is Puerto Ayacucho, the state capital, founded in 1924 as a powerful port for shipping wood.The city can please the Amazonas Ethnological Museum, avenida Rio Negro, handicraft market.
It should be noted that amazing rocky hills rise around the city. We are talking about such attractions as Cerro Perico, Cerro Pintado, Cerro el Samuro. At many archaeological sites, petroglyphs have been found that date back to 5-3 millennia BC.