Canaima National Park: A Geological Wonderland

Located in southeastern Venezuela’s Bolivar State, Canaima National Park borders Brazil and Guyana. This massive geological wonderland covers 12,000 square miles, making it the sixth largest national park in the world. Roughly 65 percent of the park is covered in tepuis or tabletop mountains, a type of plateau with vertical walls and nearly flat tops, making for stunning scenic views. The park was designated a World Heritage Site in 1994, by UNESCO, because of its tepuis.

Top Sites in Canaima National Park

  • Angel Falls: Indisputably the most popular site in the park, Angel Falls is the world’s tallest waterfall, standing 3,287 feet high. It is actually 16 times taller than Niagara Falls.
  • Mount Roraima: Another very popular tepuis in the park, as this is the tallest and easiest to climb. Visitors enjoy exploring its black rocks, pools, gorges, and wildflower gardens.
  • La Gran Sabana: This terrain offers breathtaking views of wide open plains filled with tepuis.
  • Salto Aponguao: Considered one of the country’s most beautiful waterfalls, Salto Aponguao has a drop of more than 300 feet. This site is challenging to reach, but visitors say the stunning sites are worth the difficult trek.
  • Mt. Auyantepui: One of the largest mountains in the Guiana Range, the waters of Angel Falls flow from the cliffs of Mt. Auyantepui.
  • Kavak: A remote village run by the Pemon Indians. While reaching the site isn’t the easiest, travelers who make the trip are always glad they did so.
  • Salto el Sapo: Adventure seeking travelers enjoy the opportunity to cross a waterfall by foot offered by Salto el Sapo.

Canaima National Park Wildlife

The park is home to a diverse assortment of plant and animal species not found anywhere else in the world. One-third of the plants in Canaima National Park are not found anywhere else in the world. According to UNESCO, 118 mammals, 550 birds, 72 reptiles, and 55 amphibians have been recorded in the park. Six species of mammals are of conservation concern, including the giant anteater, giant armadillo, giant otter, bush dog, little spotted cat, and margay.

Where to Stay

Camping in Canaima National Park is not permitted. Although the rule is enforced throughout the park, officials monitor the Angel Falls area extra closely, as it is the most popular site for visitors. Travelers stay at the inns, hostels, lodges, and official campgrounds in the park. Some of these include:

  • Campamento Canaima
  • Barquilla de Fresa
  • Waku Lodge
  • Jungle Rudy’s Ucaima Camp
  • Tapuy Lodge
  • Campamento Parakaupa
  • Excursiones Kavac
  • Arekuna Lodge
  • Campamento Morichal Canaima
  • Camp Tiuna & Tours

Enjoy your trip to Canaima National Park, one of the world’s greatest natural wonders. You’re sure to see sites and take in experiences that you’ve never even dreamed possible!

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About the author

Joanne Castillo

Joanne has experience in local, regional and international development affairs. She has lived and worked in the USA, Europe and Latin America. She is bilingual in Spanish and English with working knowledge in French, Italian and Portuguese. Joanne evaluates each activity and ensures their sustainability and low impact to the environment while supporting the local people. Joanne has traveled the world and decided to join the team when she traveled to Venezuela, fell in love with it in 2008.

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