The Cueva del Guacharo National Park is one of the most exciting places you can visit in Venezuela. For nature lovers and thrill seekers, this is the place to be.
Location and How to Get to This Specific Site
The park is situated 12 km from Caripe, Monagas. You can get there by bus or other public transportation. A tour operator can arrange the transport for you.
What to See There
The biggest attraction is the limestone cave. It is the dwelling place of oilbirds (Spanish name is guacharos), a nocturnal frugivorous species. The oilbirds are birds that live at the cave’s first section. You will notice them by their distinct cry. The tails are long and there are bristles on the beak. Their color is brown with white and black spots.
Most of the oilbirds are 48 cm long. A close examination will reveal the creatures produce a substance called guano. This forms the fundamental nutrients of the cave ecosystem. The most exciting part is when the birds emerge from the cave at night to look for food. Like bats, they come out in large flocks.
The Cueva del Guacharo National Park was declared a Venezuelan National Monument in 1949. It was the first National Monument of the country. The park was actually developed a little later. This became necessary so the forest ecosystem and the cave could be preserved.
The cave is 10 km long. The humidity is 100%. The temperature is almost always around 19 C. The cave is notable for the large galleries linked by passages. There are also some fascinating rock formations in the chambers.
The entrance fee is 5,000 Bs per person. This is about 2 USD. Tours of the cave are guided.
Besides the oilbirds, the cave is also home to rats, spiders, frogs, fish and crabs. The areas open to tourists depend on the weather. If there is heavy rain, it may be limited to the first 500 meters. You cannot bring bags into the cave; they must be left close to the
Cameras may be used. But flashes can only be used when you have gone past the first chamber. The tour will take about 90 minutes.
At the Cueva del Guacharo National Park entrance is the Humboldt Museum. There you will find information about the park, the oilbirds and the cave. It is highly recommended that you wear nonslip sneakers and long pants in the cave.