Journey to the base of Angel Falls, Experience the wildlife of the Llanos
8 days /
From $3,236 per person, double occupancy for 2013
Day 1: Caracas
Welcome to Venezuela! Airport reception and transfer to your hotel.
Overnight accommodations at the Costa Real Suites, with typical breakfast included. The hotel is conveniently located in Caracas' Central Coast, in the Tanaguarena/Caraballeda area, just 20 min drive from the airport. There are only 15 colorful suites, with a comfortable bedroom with big windows, private bathroom (shower with hot water), a spacious living room with couches and a double hammock, a/c, fan, cable TV, hairdryer, safe, and minibar/fridge. There is a swimming pool and a restaurant/bar.
Day 2: Caracas – Canaima National Park
In the morning set off on a flight to Canaima, flying over the massive tepuis into the remote south of Venezuela. After a short dugout canoe ride up the Carroa River, you’ll find Ucaima Camp, ideally situated on the banks of the river, above Hacha Falls with views of three tepuis and the giant Auyantepui in the distance. Here you’ll find abundant wildlife including jaguars, monkeys, toucans, fisher eagles and royal herons. Accommodations are in comfortable cabanas with private bathrooms. All meals included.
Depending on the time you arrive, you will have time for an additional excursion. A great day trip is to Kavak Canyon, one of the narrowest canyons in the world. Guided by local Indians, you'll wade and swim through the canyon to the hidden waterfall of Kavak. The park is also home to a small settlement of Pemon Indians, whose adobe and thatch churuata dwellings have changed little in thousands of years.
A half day to trip to Sapo Falls is an exciting way to explore the backcountry of southern Venezuela by motorized canoe. You can walk behind the falls and swim nearby. Afterward, travel up the Caño Moroco stream to see El Venado (the deer) and El Zamuro (the vulture) mesas.(L,D)
Day 3: Full-day excursion to Angel Falls
*Subject to weather conditions year-round
After early morning coffee and light snack, board a motorized dugout canoe (curiara) and set off up the Carrao River, which is lined by luxuriant vegetation.
After another short jeep trip around Mayupa rapids, continue up river, stopping to view the spectacular scenery of the "Lost World." Giant tepuis loom over the savannah and jungle below and countless waterfalls gracefully descend the face of Auyan-tepui.
The journey continues passing by Arautaima rapids, Pozo de la Felicidad and Orchid Island. Upon arrival at Orchid Island, breakfast will be served. Afterward, continue upriver, leaving the Carrao River behind, and proceeding up the Churun River. After about one hour, you will reach Ratoncito Island, from where you can observe Angel Falls.
From Ratoncito Island, a one hour hike leads to El Mirador, a lookout point offering superb views and photographic opportunities (weather permitting) to capture the massive rocky face of Auyan-tepui and "Salto Angel" in the warm morning sun. The rest of your morning will be spent exploring this "Lost World" on your own, and after a barbeque lunch return to Ucaima Camp in time for dinner. (B,L,D)
Day 4: Canaima - Caracas - Barinas - Hato El Cedral
Transfer to the airport for your flight to Caracas (connection in Puerto Ordaz). Connect with your flight to Barinas. You will be met at the Barinas Airport and transfer to El Cedral in the flat Llanos grasslands. Arrive at Hato El Cedral, a 160,000-acre working ranch and wildlife sanctuary. The campamento takes a serious approach to environmental issues, introducing the full protection of wildlife within their ranches, installing research stations and contributing to ecological funds.
The Llanos is a bird watcher's paradise, with more than 300 species identified. Highlights include hoatzins, pied lapwings, king vultures, storks and ibis. See rugged Venezuelan cowboys, the llaneros, hard at work as they skillfully move great herds of cattle across the ranch. All meals included. (B,L,D)
Days 5, 6: Hato El Cedral
Embark on a variety of excursions in the early morning and late afternoon in the "Serengeti of South America." All meals included. (B,L,D)
Day 7: El Cedral - Barinas - Caracas
Depending on flight schedules, you may have much of the day at El Cedral for an additional excursion. At the appropriate time, you will transfer back to the Barinas Airport for your flight to Caracas.
Barinas - Caracas flight times to be advised
Airport reception and transfer to your hotel. Overnight accommodations at the Costa Real Suites, breakfast included. (B,L)
Day 8: Int'l departure
Hotel pickup and transfer to the international airport. (B)