Greetings from the Amazon! It is quite amazing to see it first hand. Internet is hard to find in the Amazon so I will be out of commission for a while 🙂 Will share with you some of the most spectacular photos and videos.

Amazon in Venezuela

In the southernmost part of Venezuela is the Amazonas region. Bordered to the west by the Orinoco River and Colombia, and to the south and the east by Brazil. The nearly 70,000 square miles of this area encompass lush rain forest, hundreds of rivers, and broad savannahs.

Puerto Ayacucho, its capital city, was founded in 1924 as a base camp for workmen building the road south to Samariapo. The average temperature in this 20,000 inhabitants city is 82°F. Amazonas is one of the less inhabited states in Venezuela, its total population barely surpassing 80,000. The Ethnological Museum and the Indian Market are worth an excursion. Nearby attractions include Pozo Azul and the Tobogan de la Selva along with Cerro Pintado, which boasts the largest known petroglyphs in Venezuela; as well as the sacred mount, the Autana, which is a 4,265 feet high table top mountain, or tepuy. Whitewater rafting in the Orinoco is also an option and rivers in the south offer one of the two best places in the country for peacock bass fishing.

Twenty distinct indigenous groups with their own customs and languages reside here, including the Yanomami, the Piaroa and the Makiritares, also known as Yekuanas. The semi nomadic Yanomami tribe, also known as Yanomamo, are the most isolated group of the Amazonas people. Deep in the rain forest, traveling back and forth across the Brazilian border, the Yanomami are hunter-gatherers. Communities live in a shabono, a large circular compound and string hammocks under the outer ring and use the open center for public events like ceremonial dances. Yanomami Shamans use medicinal herbs to receive supernatural visions. The Yanomami cremate their dead, then grind the bones into a powder to be consumed in a special brew. in this way, they keep the spirits of the deceased alive. The Piaroa live mainly along the Sipapo and Cataniapo rivers in thatched colonial buildings known as Churuatas. They raise animals and farm in round plots called Conucos. The Maquiritares or Makiritares also live in the Amazonas. They are noted builders of dugout canoes.

The means of transportation inside this remote area of Venezuela is mainly by air taxi or charter flights and by dugout canoes known as Bongos or Curiaras. The only paved roads links Puerto Ayacucho with Samariapo (some kilometers south) and with Ciudad Bolivar in the northeast. Scheduled air commercial service links Puerto Ayacucho with Caracas only.

Amazonas is home to exotic plants and rare animals, a place where travelers can truly enjoy one of the world’s great wildernesses. The Orinoco River, Venezuela’s largest and seventh in the world, originates here and the Brazo Casiquiare, a curious arm of water that links the basins of the Orinoco and the Amazon is tripped in the Route of Humboldt Expedition. Approximately 8,000 species of plants, including orchids, bromeliads and mosses, grow in the state; 7,000 of which are indigenous. Jaguars, ocelots, deer, tapir, giant anteaters, peccaries and half a dozen species of monkeys are the inhabitants of this region, along with the fearsome bushmaster snake and the better known anaconda. Bird watchers will be excited to discover that some 680 species of birds, including colored toucans, parrots and macaws live here. Amazonas’ rivers swarm with electric eels, piranhas, caimans, river dolphins and turtles. Four national parks (Duida Marahuaca, Parima Tapirapeco, Serrania La Neblina and Yapacana), one Forest Reserve (Sipapo) and one Biosphere Reserve (Alto Orinoco-Casiquiare) protect much of this impressive wildlife.


Chess Daily News from Susan Polgar
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