Venezuela (58), Puerto La Cruz (0281), Margarita (0295), Cumana
(0293), Caracas (02
offshore islands have something for everyone. Many of these
islands remain the unspoiled paradise that they were 100 years
ago. They are the best of the Caribbean.
|Built back when salt was as
precious as gold, as the means to keep food in the hot
damp climates. The salt mines in Araya were under regular siege
from the Dutch and pirates. The fortress was ordered
destroyed in 1770 for budgetary reasons, but its massive original
construction has allowed the fortress to remain a major ruin on
The salted world of Araya by tiwy.com
Lots of fotos of ferry fort and salt mining.
Year-round temperatures range between 22 and 28 °C. Coastal
climate has high temperatures and constant trade winds from
November until May, while it's a bit cooler with more humidity
from June to October.
the Caribbean's longest coastline
|Instead of plundering gold and silver, pirates
look for inflatable dinghies, outboard motors, cash and
electronics to steal. Travel in small groups is generally wise.
Leave jewelry and other valuables at home.
|General Antonio José de Sucre,
hero of the Venezuelan war of Independence and Simón Bolívar's
right-hand man, is the namesake of the statel - although sugar cane
was an important crop here in colonial times.
|In the state
of Sucre basket weaving is common, together
with doll-making, home-made sweets of all kinds, pottery, and
the making of typical musical instruments. Cups made locally of
clay and used for “mate”, a typical drink from the
Baskets are weaved by hand from coco palm leaves. Dolls are made
out of wire and covered with felt, head and body.
:in a mountain valley up from the coast is a
pleasant respite to the coastal heat and the site of coffee and orange
plantations. Visitors enjoy the waterfalls of Salto La Payla and
Salto El Chorrerón, the view from El Mirador and the hike
up Cerro Negro, the highest peak in the region.
|This National Park stretches
from Puerto la Cruz to Cumin. It contains many islands as well
as a strip of hilly coast noted for its deep bays and white
sandy beaches. Some of the islands are surrounded by coral reefs
and offer great snorkeling. The waters are calm, warm and are
filled with a variety of marine life.
|2 UK sailors report
on their '99 boat trip
"Laguna Grande. This is
a large lagoon on Northern shore of the gulf of Cariacou and it
is described as a "colossal bay which is breathtakingly
beautiful with an endless variety of contrasting hills in whites
and glowing reds. ... It is a timeless desert landscape,
outstandingly colourful and decorative." Intrigued by this
description we had to stop by and see for ourselves. [more]
of travel postings courtesy of my wife’s bank at
CUMANA the capital of El Oriente
|The entire northeastern sector of the
country is simply referred to as "El Oriente" by Venezuelans -
beaches, historic sites and exceptional ecotourism. Venezuelans are
great beach lovers, particularly for long weekends.
Cumaná (305,000 inhabitants) is the
friendly capital of Venezuela's Sucre State. It is situated at the mouth of
the Manzanares river on the Caribbean coast, 402 km east of Caracas. It
was the first city to be founded by Europeans on the South American
mainland in 1521.
Cumaná is a seaport on the Manzanares River, near the Gulf of Cariaco
with an excellent natural harbor and modern cargo-handling facilities. The chief exports
include coffee, tobacco, and sugarcane. Distilleries
and plants producing furniture and textiles are located here.
After Amerindian attacks became less of
a threat, the city was on several occasions destroyed by earthquakes -- in
1766, 1797, and 1929. Thus, the
oldest part of the city is late 17th and 18th century; almost none of
the 16th century architecture survived.
It is home to one of five sites for the Universidad del Oriente and a busy
maritime city with one of the largest tuna fleets in Venezuela. The city
is close to the Mochima National Park, which boasts some of
Venezuela's finest beaches.
|The city features a wide variety of colonial style architecture in
excellent condition, inlcuding the Spanish fort, the Castillo de San
Antonio de la Eminencia (Castle of Saint Anthony of the Eminence),
which can be seen from the beach. Constructed with coral walls in
the favored four-pointed star plan, the fort survived earthquakes and
pirates and is now favored for the sunset views of the city and the bay,
the Golfo de Cariaco. Castillo de Santa Maria de la
Cabeza was built in 1669. The Museo del Mar displays
marine and maritime artifacts.
SANTA INES CHURCH
Santa Inés is patron Saint of the city since 1572.
Casa Natal de Andrés Eloy Blanco is the home of the poet, one of
Venezuela's greatest literary figures. Museo Gran Mariscal de
Ayacucho is dedicated to native son General Antonio Jose de Sucre,
hero of the Battle of Ayacucho and later the first president of Bolivia
a town in the spectacular Mochima National Park, is just 15 minutes from Cumana
and has beautiful beaches like Playa
Colorada, with white sands and transparent waters. Great for scuba
|November: Noches de
A costume parade and festival inspired by nostalgia. Cumana does
claim to be the continent's oldest Spanish town , after
Art and historical exhibitions, antique cars, old-style songs
with music and dance by many groups performing on stages in
Plaza Bolivar and the Alcaldia.
Places To Stay -Cumaná
rooms , 4 floors.Ave Universidad, Playa San Luis
Cumana 6101 Venezuela Contemporary and tropical design
surrounded by rolling meadows, trees and beach - Beach-front.
"You can live
it up at this place and never encounter sticker
shock....The hotel has six lighted tennis courts
(hard courts, overdue for resurfacing, but still
playable); and a small golf course...To
get into town (to see the castle, etc.), you
need a car; a taxi is about $4 each way.
Overall, I definitely recommend this place. It's
in very good shape, they seem to care about it
and your well-being, and you would pay much, much
more for a top-end place like this elsewhere in
Nueva Toledo Suites & Hotel
Final Avda Univesidad
Cumana Venezuela Beach of San Luis tel.293-451-9595
on the San Luis Beach
"Lamentable que unas instalaciones tan bonitas
estèn tan abandonadas. La piscina està tan sucia
que no la utilizamos ->Lamentable that so pretty
facilities estèn so left. The so dirty swimming
pool està that we did not use
rooms] Ave Universidad, Playa San Luis Cumana 6101 Venezuela
Casino, Swimming Pool, Golf Course, Fitness Center, Wheelchair
Accessible, Spa/Massage, Meeting Facilities, Babysitting,
|The Hotel Cumanagoto
is a deserving 5-star resort at the beach just outside
the town of Cumana
Hotel Sofitel Cumanagoto
Playa San Luis - Avda. Universidad, Tel:5893321624 5-star on the
beach with swimming pool
Tel:+58 (0)293 431 1423, VHF Channel 16,72
Marina services and fuel. A useful stop for yachts. Downtown
Cumaná is about a mile from the port.
GETTING THERE & AROUND
Cumana Airport - (CUM)
Antonio Jose de Sucre very near to the
The local airport services flights to and from Caracas and Porlamar on
The last section of the road from Caracas to Cumana is very
bumpy and windy and not worth it if your main destination is the
beach and Mochima National Park.
Bus service to and from Caracas, Puerto La Cruz, Ciudad
Bolívar and Ciudad Guayana and Cueva del Guácharo
By car: From the west it is 1.5 hours from Puerto La
Cruz. Go Oriente” (East) by the “ ruta del sol”
From the south, take the Maturin highway which goes through
San Antonio de Maturin, and Cumanacoa before reaching
By water: Ferries to and from Isla de Margarita and Araya on the
Peninsula de Araya. (Ferry: Margarita
two hours by fast ferry) These are separate ferries with the one
to Araya determined more by the cue than a shedule.
Ferry terminal is at the foot of Av El Islote, several
blocks down from the Mercado Municipal. The waterfront is not
that safe a place in Cumana, so take a taxi or por puesto. The
Gran Cacique hydrofoil fast ferry
Boats: Marina Cumanagoto has facilities for motor
and sail boats.
Golfo de Cariaco
Heading due east is the Golfo de
Cariaco, famous for its fish and the blueness of its water. The Gulf
of Cariaco has many inlets with small colorful villages and outstanding
anchorages. Most significant is Laguna Grande, a large lagoon
with many inlets offering snorkeling. Oysters and scallops
can be scooped up by hand. The red and green surrounding hills offer
challenging hikes to about 1,000 feet. At the easternmost end of the
gulf, Colobus monkeys play in the mangroves and scarlet ibis can often
be seen flying overhead.
The Gulf of Cariaco is thirty miles
long and eight miles wide and offers some of the most protected sailing
waters in the Caribbean. The nearby Laguna Grande, apart from its
spectacular beauty, is considered one of the safest storm anchorages in
Depth map for Gulf of Cariaco
Lat: N 10º 28' 10" - Lon: W 64º 11' 10"
VHF Channels 22/23
P. O. Box 121, Cumaná, Edo. Sucre Venezuela
Tel: + 58 (293) 400-0547
Marina Cumanagoto, located at the entrance of the Gulf of
Cariaco, is the safest hurricane hole in the Caribbean with
the low dockage rates.
Araya at the western tip of the
Peninsula is a ferry stop for the Cumana-Isla Margarita ferry.
The sa;t-water evaporation ponds there are fascinating and the huge
beautiful beach often welcomes windsurfers. The large industrial plant
is for processing Sacosal salt. High above are the partially restored and
never completely destroyed ruins of the Castillo de Santiago de Araya
It is possible to take a ferry across
to the Araya Peninsula and the town of Araya.
The western end of the Araya Peninsula
is desert, with barren hills softened along the coast by several
palm-fringed oasis. The beaches here are largely deserted and
known for excellent shelling and desert landscapes.
Cariaco is the the second oldest
town on the continent and off the highway that serves Peninsula de
Salinas - these salt pans were
discovered by the Spanish in 1499 and have been continuously worked
since then. They are Venezuela's greatest salt deposits and open to
visitors with a free permit and a guide from ENSAL, the salt mining
company. Worth seeing are the natural salinas, the artificial salinas
and the processing buildings.
The Castillo de Araya was built on the cliffs in the early 17th
century to protect the salinas. After a hurricane flooded the salt
lagoon, the fort was abandoned. Built in the 17th Century is largely in
ruins, but commands good views over the pleasant hot little town. The Spaniards tried to explode it, but
the fort, the most expensive Spanish effort to date, resisted their
efforts and all the gunpowder at hand.
Marinas: Golfe de
http://www.medregalvillage.com/ Golfe de Cariaco -
ARAYA PENINSULA - SUCRE STATE
PO.BOX 205 - CUMANA - EDO SUCRE
GPS: 10º 32' N - 63º 48 W VHF: Ch, 71
Phone: 0414.993.48.90. - (58) 414.993.48.90. Phone:
0293.808.90.14. - (58)293.808.90.14.
As many boaters do, we anchored in front of
Medregal-Village Hotel, built by a
Belgian-Frenchman, Jean-Marc Plessy, and his
Venezuelan mate, Yoleida. They make you so
welcome there that the stay is wonderful.
Boaters can use - free - all the hotel
facilities, including the huge swimming pool.
The anchorage is in good holding, well protected
in 15 feet, and there are two dinghy docks, one
at each end of the area.
The Insiders' Guided to Gulf of Cariaco
M&M Marina is about two hours by road from
Cumana and Carupano, both these cities offer daily air
links to the capital Caracas. M&M Marina is situated on
the northern shore of the Gulf of Cariaco in the Sucre
state of Venezuela at GPS position 10º 32' N - 63º 48'
Cumana, Sucre State, Venezuela
Lowest dockage rate. uniformed security guards 24 hours .
Full service at fuel dock. Cumaná
Tel:+58 (0)293 431 1423, VHF Channel 16,72
Marina services and fuel. Downtown Cumaná is about a mile
from the port.