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Amazon discovery expedition 15D/14N Venezuela

Programme Overview

Llanos + Caura river + Orinoco Delta

This Amazon discovery expedition trip is the perfect one to explore a vast area of Venezuela and its most amazing places of interests such as: Los Llanos, the Caura River and the Orinoco Delta. You will be able to see everything! The Venezuelan local guides, host families, hospitable people, and wonderful landscapes will give you a proper Venezuela experience.

This detailed programme is just an overview of some of our available activities among many others. Remember you might be able to make some modifications to the current tourist programme based upon your personal preferences.

  • - Meeting local families will make you feel closer to the country.
  • - You will discover ones of the most unusual natural places on Earth, where you will also be able to have a truly relaxing experience.
  • - It's possible you have to wait for some time between the two national connecting flights.
  • - Long roads in remote areas that are difficult to access are usual.

Detailed Programme

mérida Town Centre
Day 1: Arrival in Venezuela and Transfer to The Andes

Once your international flight arrives in Caracas, claim your luggage at the carousel. After going through customs, follow the transit flight sign until you get to the national airport, and check in at the counter; it will take you about 10 minutes to go from the international flights area to the national one. Our driver is going to pick you up at the airport in El vígia city and take you directly to your posada (a sort of inn) in mérida (1h30- 2h).
Meals: (--)
Accommodation: Hacienda colonial Buenaventura. Hot water and electricity.
Transport: Toyota Land Cruiser model 70.
Communication: mobile network & 3G.
Journey from the Andes to Los Llanos
Day 2: An Amazing Journey from the Andes to the South American Grasslands

On this trip, you’ll have the opportunity to visit Los Llanos, a vast tropical grassland plain the size of Germany. Located between Colombia and Venezuela, this savannah is very well known for its important and unique biodiversity. Here, you will be able to see several species of birds such as: scarlet ibises, herons, savannah hawks, double-striped thick-knees, spectacled thrushes; wild reptiles such as: anacondas, spectacled caimans, gold tegus, iguanas; and the largest rodent in the world: the capybara. Our trip starts at 08:00AM from mérida. We will go over the mountains to Barinas, on a paved road that reaches the 3,500 m. at its highest point (134 km, 3h 30 min). We will feel how temperatures will start rising rapidly as we go getting closer to the foothills. Depending on time schedule and weather conditions, we will make several stops and a 1-hour hike around the mountain lakes and through the pine forests. After leaving the mountains behind, we we’ll make a stop to eat lunch at a traditional restaurant where we will try “Carne en vara” (Venezuelan-style grilled beef). Later, we will continue our trip towards Mantecal. From this point on, the climate will start changing gradually, and more and more abundant wildlife can be seen as we go deeper into the Savannah. (350km, 3h 30min). Once we get to Mantecal, you are going to stay overnight with a host family.
Meals: (-L-D)
Accommodation: Viviano's family, cold water and electricity during the night.
Transport: Toyota Land Cruiser model 70.
Communication: No network.
Red Ibis, Los Llanos Venezuela
Day 3 : Watch Caimans and Other Spectacular Wild Animals

In this region, there is a large number of majestic wide slow rivers that are home to countless species of animals such as: red ibises, white and black storks (Jabiru), kingfishers, herons, eagles, turtles, dolphins and tapirs. So, after having breakfast, we will go for a safari boat ride on one of the most well preserved rivers of Los Llanos; you will be able to enjoy bird-watching, seeing dolphins and giant river otters, and photographing wildlife in general. After this pleasant activity, you will return to your camp for an outdoor meal. You will go on safari in a 4X4 vehicle in the afternoon. You can sit on the roof of the vehicle and enjoy a 360° panoramic view. This day ends with the capture of alligators and the observation of wild anteaters.
Meals: (B-L-D)
Accommodation: Viviano's family, cold water and electricity during the night.
Transport: Toyota Land Cruiser model 70.
Communication : No network.
Caiman catching, Los Llanos Venezuela
Day 4: Anacondas Search, Horse Riding and Piranhas Fishing

Horseback riding, searching for anacondas and fishing piranhas are three experiences you simply cannot miss this day. After breakfast, you'll be able to ride a horse and go even deeper into the savannah. Horseback riding is the best way to get closer enough to watch and photograph wild animals. It’s also possible to go walking in the Savannah if you wish. After finishing these activities, you will go back to your camp for an outdoor meal. The afternoon will be devoted to looking for anacondas and fishing piranhas you could eat for dinner!
Accommodation: Viviano's family, cold water and electricity during the night.
Transport: Toyota Land Cruiser model 70.
Communication : No network.
Picture of Los Llanos, Venezuela
Día 5: Fly from Los Llanos to Caracas

We leave for Barinas at 8:00 a.m. (350km; 3h 30min). Once there, you’ll have lunch and depending on the day of the week, you'll be transferred to Barinas airport for you to take a direct flight to Caracas airport in the afternoon, or we can also arrange for a taxi to take you there (5-6h; 450km). At Caracas airport, walk up to the gate number 11 at the national flights area; once there, you’ve got to head to the international arrivals hall by following the arrows. Your driver will be waiting for you under the giant screen at the international arrivals hall. He’ll be holding up a sign with the word “Catimar - Hotel Villa Playa Grande”. If you do not find your driver immediately because there are too many people at the arrivals hall, don’t worry, many of the people who are holding up the hotel signs under the giant screen know what "Catimar-Hotel Villa Playa Grande” is, just show them a piece of paper with the name of that hotel on it, or say it out loud, so they can tell you who your driver is going to be. Once your driver has dropped you off at the hotel, you must notify the time of your flight departure at the front desk, so you may agree on the time your taxi will take you to the airport the next day.
Accommodation: Hotel Villa Playa Grande. Hot water and electricity.
Transport: Toyota Land Cruiser model 70 (Los Llanos-Barinas)
Communication: Mobile network, 3G & WiFi.
Ciudad Bolívar’s Historic Centre
Day 6: Go Sightseeing in Ciudad Bolívar’s Historic Centre.

On your way to Canaima, you’re going to have a 1-day stop-over in Ciudad Bolívar: a city that lies alongside the Orinoco River, and that is known for its well-preserved historic centre. You must check in for your flight to Puerto Ordaz at Caracas airport. Then, when you arrive in Puerto Ordaz, a driver will pick you up at the airport and take you to your Posada in Ciudad Bolívar (1h; 100km). Once you get there, we encourage you to visit the town centre in the afternoon by yourself (not included); and try some fresh fish in one of the small restaurants next to the fish market.
Meals: (B--)
Accommodation: Posada La Casita, hot water and electricity.
Communication: Mobile network, 3G & WiFi.
Transportation: Middle-sized Berline
native statue expedition amazonas Caura Venezuela
Day 7: Go Deep into to the Amazon Tropical Rainforest

We’ll leave early in the morning towards Maripa that is a 3-hour drive away (230km). Once we get there, we’ll eat lunch on the Orinoco River bank. Then, we will go for a boat ride on the Caura River before reaching La Cocuiza, a simple nice camp that Mr. Julio has built all by himself in the middle of the dense tropical rainforest.
Meals: (L-D).
Accommodation: Camp La Cocuiza. You’ll sleep in a hammock with a mosquito net by the river bank.
Transport: Mid-size sedan.
Communication: No network.

Important information on gold mining: The Caura River as well as many other rivers in the Amazon are currently being victims of the negative impact of indiscriminate and widespread illegal mining. On this trip, you will realise what is actually happening there. Although there are still very well-preserved areas, there are some others that are being affected by pollution and other collateral illegal mining problems that are affecting both the indigenous communities’ lifestyle and their ancestral traditions and customs.

Camp La Cocuiza
Day 8: Be Part of a Memorable Encounter with Indigenous Tribes

This morning, we will continue our 4-hour trip on a dugout canoe before we stop to eat lunch by the river bank. Here you will see many beautiful butterflies that will probably land on you. Later, we’ll keep sailing down the river and stop by a small community. You’ll get surprised to see a few children playing around the area while their parents are dealing with their everyday chores. In fact, most of adults go hunting and farming during the day, so you will not see most of them. Back in our canoe, we’ll head to El Playón, a camp inhabited by only gold miners. One hour before getting to that camp, we will pass by one of the many military checkpoints in the area, so be aware for them not to take you by surprise. Here you have to show your passport, and please don’t forget to smile. Finally, you'll arrive in El Playón, the camp where gold miners live (the gold mine is one and a half day walk from el Playón). This camp is surrounded by many waterfalls, which makes it a great place for you to swim. You can also settle into one of the huts that overlooks the river.
Meals: (B-L-D).
Accommodation: Camp El Playón. Hammocks, cold water, electricity only at night, and sanitation facilities (no shower; you can bathe in the river).
Transport: Motorised dugout canoe.
Communication: No network.
Pará Falls
Day 9: Hike to Pará Falls

This morning we will walk through the jungle for around three hours to see Pará Falls. On our way to the falls, we will pass through a small village and visit a house where cassava flour is produced. Going back along the path, the waterfall can already been seen through the vegetation. We’ll pass by a military checkpoint; and a little farther ahead, we’ll finally get to a place where you can take a closer look at the falls. On our way back, two options are available: you can either return along the same path or take a side route that leads to a place where you will be able to enjoy a beautiful view of the Caura River. In this case, going downhill will be somewhat difficult because there are many rocks, roots and lianas (woody vines). We’ll finally be back in camp after walking a little while.
Meals: (B-L-D).
Accommodation: Camp El Playón. Hammocks, cold water, electricity only at night, and sanitation facilities (no shower; you have to bathe in the river). Transport: Transport: Motorised dugout canoe.
Communication: No network.
The Caura River
Day 10: Sail along the Caura River

After breakfast, we'll leave El Playón and continue to sail downstream through a branch of the river in order to fish and try to see dolphins. Lunch will be served on a small beach full of butterflies alongside the river. You can fish all what you wish in this place. In the afternoon, we’ll be back to camp La Cocuiza.
Meals: (B-L-D).
Accomodation: Camp La Cocuiza. Hammocks, cold water, electricity only at night, and sanitation facilities (no shower; you have to bathe in the river).
Communication: No network.
Tourists on the Riverbank
Day 11: Back in Ciudad Bolívar

We’ll sail back to Maripa early in the morning for around 4 hours. A driver will be waiting for you there. Then, he will take you back to Ciudad Bolívar, which is a 3-hour drive away.
Meals: (B--).
Accommodation: Posada La Casita, hot water and electricity.
Transportation: Toyota Land Cruiser model 70.
Communication: Mobile network, 3G and Wi-Fi.
Indigenous house, Orinoco Delta
Day 12: Enjoy a Unique Experience in the Orinoco Delta

The Orinoco Delta is one of the eight natural regions of Venezuela. It is fan-shaped, and it’s formed by the Orinoco River as it splits into numerous distributaries, called caños, which meander through the delta on their way to the sea. The delta includes large areas of permanent wetlands as well as seasonally-flooded freshwater swamp forests. The river margins of the delta are fringed with mangroves. Today, we leave Ciudad Bolívar at 07:00AM and head towards San José de Buja that is 3 hour and a half by car (250 Km). Real fun kicks off with a 1-hour boat ride through the channels of the delta until we reach our camp. At this surprising and cosy camp, you’ll have the experience of sleeping in an individual room in the heart of a mangrove, and eat a buffet lunch. During the afternoon, you’ll be able to canoe through the channels, accompanied by local guides that will teach you some Waraos traditions. Dolphins, butterflies, and parrots observation is also planned, as well as a snack on the boat while watching the sunset.
Meals: (-L-D)
Accommodation: Orinoco-camp; cold water and no electricity.
Transport: Middle-sized berline and boat.
Communication : No network.
Eco-camp, Orinoco Delta
Day 13: Spend Time with an Indigenous Tribe

In the morning, we’ll put on our rubber boots and leave camp after breakfast in order to visit the mangrove forest with your local guide. This will be a unique experience in which you’ll learn how the indigenous people manage to live in such a hostile environment. We will go back to camp for a well-deserved meal before we begin the piranha fishing adventure, having the chance to eat the fish for dinner.
Meals: (B-L-D)
Accommodation: Orinoco-camp; cold water and no electricity.
Transport: Boat.
Communication : No network.
Tourists in the Orinoco Delta
Day 14 : Visit the Mangroves

In today’s excursion we will visit a Waraos community. Here you will realise the difference between our modern world and the traditional life of this indigenous people. With the help of your guide, you’ll be able to understand the positive and negative impact of the interactions between our world and theirs. During this visit, you can also get some indigenous handcrafted products and also learn how to make them by yourself. Once we leave this community, we will return to San José de Buja in the afternoon. Then, you’ll be transferred to Maturín by car (70Km, 01h30).
Meals: (B-L-)
Accommodation: Hotel « Stauffer »; hot water and electricity.
Transport: Boat and middle-sized Berline.
Communication: Mobile network, 3G & Wi-Fi.
Day 15 : Return to the Airport, and Take your International Flight

You’ll be driven back to Maturín Airport (15min; 5km) and then have a flight to Caracas Airport. Once you get there, you’ll be able to board your international flight. We recommend you should be at the check-in counter 5 hours before your flight.
Meals : (B*--)
Accommodation: none.
Transport: Middle-sized Berline.
Communication: mobile network, 3G & Wi-Fi.
*Simple breakfast.
  • Double and triple accommodation in regional cities: expedition 15D/14N
  • 4 people or more : prices start at 1090 Euros/p
  • 2 people : prices start at 1435 Euros/p
  • Low season rates: -10%
  • high season rates: +15%

The following things are included in the price:
  • - All means of Transport: flights, boat trips, 4X4 vehicles and taxis from Caracas and to Caracas.
  • - All of the accommodation facilities.
  • - Meals when specified (B-L-D) = (Breakfast-Lunch-Diner).
  • - Guides speak English & Spanish.
  • - All the excursions and safaris mentioned in the programme, except for those mentioned in Mochima.
Not included:
  • - International flights.
  • - Airport taxes (about 5euros/pers/flight).
  • - Alcoholic beverages.
  • - Meals when not specified (by yourself) (--) = no meals included.
  • - Private English-speaking guide during the whole tour.
  • - Optional excursions (Mochima).
  • - Taxes in Canaima National Park with option 3 (20euros/p).
  • - Personal expenses.
  • - All sorts of insurance.
  • - Everything that is not mentioned above « is included in the price».
Travel organization:
Our programmes are individually organised in terms of dates and content. However, our tours are not fully private, so you could meet other travellers at different stages of your trip.
What to Bring?
Hat; sunscreen; water bottle; hike pants; insect repellent; headlamp; raincoat; passport copy; sleeping bag liner; you don’t need big, heavy or cumbersome shoes, but good trainers (orienteering shoes); plastic bags to keep water away from electronic devices; first-aid-kit; polar fleece jacket; bath towel.
Further Advice:
Don't forget your travel insurance! You can benefit from the travel cancellation insurance offered by your credit-card company when paying for your tourist package at our point of sale. You must get neither a visa nor vaccination to come to Venezuela. However, Franbrasil Tour’s C.A. recommends you should get the yellow fever vaccine and the preventive treatment of malaria. You also need to have a valid passport for at least six months before arriving in Venezuela, and you have to carry it with you when travelling within the country.
Means of Transport are mentioned as examples of the models of vehicles used most often.
map of Amazonas trip Venezuela