Venezuela

Venezuela Overview

Venezuela is a South American country that ranks as one of the world’s leading producers and exporters of petroleum. Lying on the north coast of South America along the Caribbean Sea. Mountain ranges extend across much of northern Venezuela, which is the most densely populated region of the country. Caracas, the capital and largest city, lies in this region. Vast plains called the Llanos spread across central Venezuela. High plateaus and low mountains cover the south.

Sitting at the head of the South American continent, Venezuela is able to offer visitors a mixed platter of natural scenery; the Gran Sabana whose rolling highlands and flat-topped mountains are home to several indigenous Indian groups; Angel Falls, the highest waterfall in the world and ancient petroglyphs of the Duida-Marahuaca National Park deep in the Amazon jungle and the snow peaks of the Andes, the world’s longest mountain range.

Glorious nature aside, it would be a mistake to bypass the historic and lively city of Ciudad Bolívar or the largest snake in the world, the Anaconda.

CLIMATE

Venezuela lies entirely within the tropics. But the average temperatures vary throughout the country, depending chiefly on altitude. Lowland areas are warm all year. The highest average annual temperature, 83 °F (28 °C), occurs in the central part of the Llanos and in the northern Maracaibo Basin. At higher elevations, the weather is much cooler. In the Andean Highlands at Merida, the annual temperature averages 67 °F (19 °C)

KNOW BEFORE YOU GO

CAPITAL: Caracas
POPULATION: 26.4 million
LANGUAGE: Spanish
CURRENCY: Venezuelan Bolivar
ELECTRIC CURRENT: 120V, 60Hz. To power any electrical item an international adapter or a two pin plug is required.
COUNTRY DIALLING CODE: +58
TIME ZONE: GMT/UTC -4.5

TRAVEL WARNING

We advise against all travel to within 50 miles of the Colombian border in the states of Zulia, Tachira and Apure. Terrorist and illegal armed groups are active in these states and there is a risk of kidnapping.

The incidence of street crime in Venezuela is high. Armed muggings and “express kidnappings” are a regular occurrence. You should exercise caution at all times, especially when arriving in, and travelling around, Venezuela. People carrying large amounts of money, wearing valuable watches or jewellery or using mobile phones in the street are especially vulnerable.

Information provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK www.fco.gov.uk