South America | Venezuela | Venezuela’s Caribbean Islands – Tourists, Sun burn and Bad Cocktails
It was planned as a quick trip. A sold-out Glastonbury, time booked off work, no where to go and no-one to go with.
Answer = call brother in New York. I could come and see you in New York?, what do you think?.’ On second thoughts, Summer in NY is hot and sticky and my brothers apartment is small, unbearably hot and the electricity cuts out if you turn on the coffee maker…maybe we could go to Venezuela instead he suggested?
Two days later and flights were booked. Top Tip..Air 2000 do flight only deals on their charter flight from Manchester and Gatwick..I had myself a bargain.
After 9 hours on a plane full of British package holiday tourists, i land in Porlamar on Margatita Island. Its a biggish island off the coast of Venezuela in the Caribbean Sea but without Caribbean prices as it is a tax haven. Simon, my brother is there to meet me having slept on a bench in Caracas International Terminal (sleepingatairports.net is worth checking out apparently).
I promised myself that i would write a diary of the North family holiday in Venezuela, as i am constantly moaned at that being part of the worldsurface.com team, I never actually write about my travels (slap wrists)…so here it begins.
Venezuela has been going through a fair bit of turmoil in the past year and as prices have increased for the population of this oil rich nation for the visiting tourist willing to haggle a little with the black market money changers it has become even more of a bargain.
All in all cheap and following the advice of a Venezuelan friend we checked into an all inclusive resort that for $21 a day provides 3 meals, unlimited alcohol, air-con, hot water and a beach 2 minutes away! One cant complain, oh apart from the irony that on the place called Margarita they dont actually know how to make Margaritas!
Bored of the funeral atmosphere of the hotel bar and jet-lagged my brother and I decided to brave the many bars and clubs along the 2 mile Playa el Agua beach. Now, Venezuelans like their music LOUD and the bar we stumbled on (read: coerced into by a near naked Venezuelan bar tender) was no exception. We managed to escape to a table on the beach, where it rained! I thought this was the Caribbean?
Anyway, we spent the rest of the evening drinking cheap wine and beer at a bar near our hotel, with an outrageous gambling bar owner from Connecticut who rents her beachside bar for $200 a month maybe Ill move here! Not to be outdone, we were happily introduced to her Venezuelan toy boy, her gun toting security guard who protects restaurants from lobster stealing youths and her crack addict bartender who lives on the beach! All in all, an educational evening!
Enough of package holiday hell, we are off to the Andes tomorrow, for walking, chilling, drinking and Salsa, so until then, here are some pictures of the beach