Venezuela; just the mention of this misunderstood country is enough to get your blood pumping. Express-kidnappings, spiraling inflation, tropical diseases, and an unstable government.
It’s no wonder that most people give Venezuela a very wide berth when traveling in South America.
Little do they realize that Venezuela is actually one of the best countries in the whole world for budding adventurers, especially if you’re on a budget. So, I wanted to share some of the top things to do in Venezuela to show you what makes it so special.
7 Things to Do in Venezuela
Roraima is the highest table-top mountain in the world and straddles the Venezuelan-Brazilian border.
It’s a tough seven-day hike through the sweltering plains and up muddy trails but the stunning views are well worth it.
Strap on your pack, be sure to take warm clothes and journey off to find your own little corner of the mountain which inspired Arthur Conan Doyle’s ‘Lost World’.
You can bathe in freezing pools, hunt for crystals or simply soak in the tantalizing views of other nearby tepuis through the dancing mists…
2. Los Llanos
Keen to catch Piranhas? Want to wrestle an anaconda? Bought your bird-spotting binoculars? A 4 day, all-inclusive, wildlife tour of Los Llanos costs just $70 and you are pretty much guaranteed to see more wildlife than you can shake a stick at.
Explore this stunning national park by jeep, horseback, canoe and on foot – it’s a wildlife tour with a difference in that, chances are, you will be the only person there.
3. Spend Money Because It’s Crazy Cheap
20 beers for a dollar. 60 liters of gasoline for 2 cents. A five-star hotel room for four bucks… these are not exaggerations. Venezuela is by far the cheapest country I have ever visited, perhaps a tenth of the price of nearby Colombia.
If you change just one hundred bucks on the black market here you shall be presented with a literal wad of cash and can effectively live like a king.
4. Utilize Couchsurfing
Believe it or not, Couchsurfing is BIG in Venezuela I’ve been surfing for years and whilst I have noticed a steady decline in some countries this is definitely not the case in Venezuela.
It’s very easy to meet some truly cool people and save some pennies by crashing on someone’s couch for the night… best of all, your new friends can show you some real hidden gems!
5. Drink Rum!
Venezuela undoubtedly has the best rum in the world. Best of all, you can buy a bottle of $300 rum for about $4… so you can drink in style in a way that you probably never have before!
For me anyway, being in Venezuela was amazing; I constantly ate in good restaurants and drank super tasty rum, all for just a couple of bucks.
6. Angel Falls
If you’ve seen Pixar’s’ ‘Up’ then you almost certainly know what I am talking about… Angel Falls; the world’s highest waterfall and a truly stunning place to sit back with a beer after a couple of days hiking through the jungle!
I desperately wanted to visit with a bunch of red balloons but sadly didn’t get around to it.
7. Enjoy the Lack of Crowds
Currently, backpacking in Venezuela is a really well-guarded secret. There are very few backpackers there at all, in over a month I met under ten, but those who do go are in for a real treat.
Venezuela is so much cheaper than South America and although it may be a bit more dangerous it is nowhere near as bad as people make out; in my opinion, it was well worth the risk.
Choosing to go to Venezuela, despite everybody telling me not to, was one of the best decisions I have ever made. You may hear a lot of misinformation before you travel to Venezuela, I certainly did but don’t let it bother you; take the plunge and head out on an adventure unlike any other!
About the Author
Will Hatton. Writer and photographer. Adventurer and vagabond. Master of the handstand pushup. Conqueror of mountains, a survivor of deserts and crusader for cheap escapades. Will is an avid hitch-hiker, couch-surfer, and bargain-seeker. He is a devout follower of the High Temple of Backpackistan and the proud inventor of the man-hug. Will blogs over at www.thebrokebackpacker.com about his adventures around the world.
More on South America:
- Best Places to Visit in South America (Plus 34 Epic Adventures)
- Two Week Trip to Brazil Itinerary for Any Traveler
- 40 Bucketlist Things to do in Rio de Janeiro
- The Best Favela Tour in Rio: Defeating the Stigma
- 16 Epic Things to do in Bogota
- 10 Essential Things to Do in Lima, Peru
9 thoughts on “7 Exciting Things to Do in Venezuela (If You Dare To Go)”
Venezuela is my favourite country. I have seen most of it and visited three times, once solo. Always felt safe, people were so kind and helpful, I can’t wait to go back.
Always find that corner of South America fascinating,. we can talk about express-kidnappings, spiraling inflation, tropical diseases and unstable governments until the cows come home but it can also happen to you in New York city.
Fabulous post you guys and the wad-of -cash-dollar-exchange photo… priceless!..
keep on rolling. Cheers!.
Hi guys! Venezuela is truly an amazing country; sure, its statistically more dangerous than anywhere else in South America and let’s not beat about the bush; it can be a tad dodgy but the places, and prices, make it well worth the risk in my opinion. I have been to over fifty countries and this is without a doubt the most beautiful! Regarding travelling there alone, I think it’s fine but you MUST speak at least some basic spanish or I think you could get in trouble. Visiting Venezuela is pretty easy, cross the land border at Cucata from Colombia, don’t fly into the country directly, it’s too expensive… you can catch a cheap flight to Colombia from Europe, have a bit of a wander there, and then head on over to Venezuela… safe and happy travels! Peace and out, Will @ The Broke Backpacker.
That’s interesting that you say Venezuela is cheap. Everybody I met while travelling through South America told me that compared to other countries it is really expensive. But maybe that changed as a result of the political turmoil. Would definitely love to visit it one day. Roraima looks amazing!
Hi, I was born in Venezuela and have family living there. It is cheap when you’re converting dollars to bolivares, so it is great for tourists traveling there. However, the cost of living for those residing in the country is very expensive, that’s why you may hear so many comments about basic products etc being expensive. Inflation is through the roof. But it is a beautiful country, so as long as you can afford the plane ticket (it’s around one grand from Miami to Vzla right now), you should be set.
Wow thanks for sharing never knew the exchange rate was like that sounds like lots of fun at a low price!
Hi! What do you think about the expensive visas? As a young, solo, female traveler, do you think Venezuela is possible or best to wait until I have at least one other travel partner?
Venezuela has always fascinated me – like you, I have heard so many bad things about it but the few people I know who have visited have loved it. When I finally make it to South America, I will definitely be making sure it is on my itinerary – it sounds like a place that can’t be missed.
You can’t go wrong with cheap quality rum!
I was in Venezuela back in 2007, before the economy of the country completely collapsed.
At that time, exchange rates on the Black Markets were 1 to 2 compared to official rates. It seems that now the actual exchange rates have gone through the roof.
My memories are of a quite unsafe place, where I had a very weird feeling, and definitely the only country in South America (I have visited Colombia, Peru, Bolivia, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina & Chile so far) were I felt unsafe at night, as streets were completely deserted.
Yes, Roraima is amazing, but do not do it in the rainy season!
I would definitely add the Orinoco Delta, one of the highlights of the trip for me.
I didn’t know couch surfing was that big there.