Angel Falls

Canaima Travel Blog

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At a total height of 979m and a uninterrupted drop of 807m, Salto Angel is the highest waterfall in the world.  The water rushes off of Auyantepui, which is one of the largest tepuis (flap top mountain) in the area.  It was amazing to follow a wave of water blasting off of the top waiting so long for it to reach the bottom.  However it is difficult to really grasp the size of the falls even being their in person at the viewpoint.  I personally found Iguazu much more impressive. 

I was never planning on going but the street exchange rate made it too cheap to miss one of the world´s most famous sites.  We looked into going to the angel falls from Santa Elena but the price was very high because of the longer flight required to Canaima.

   We decided to take the $7 10 hour bus to Cididad Bolivar to cut the price nearly in half and got a four day all-in package for $160.  Getting to Canaima required a 3 hour van ride and a 30 minute flight.  From there we got took a long canoe with a 50 on the back upstream for a couple hours to our hammock lodge.  The boat the next morning was much more adventurous and was sort of like white water rafting upstream.  The boat was overloaded and the water rushed over the sides seemingly more often than not.

The walk up to viewpoint is less than an hour along a root covered trail through a beautiful mosquito free rainforest.  The lack of physical work required to get there eliminates the sense of accomplishment that was so enjoyable on such treks as Roraima and Lares.

  We spent a few hours splashing around in the pools down from the base of the main falls.  On the way back from salto angel we stopped at a couple of much smaller ones where we could walk behind.

Frosty, Frenchie and I elected to take the optional free extra night stay in Canaima.  After chillin on the beach for the better part of our last day we went out to find a place to eat that was no too expensive in the resort village.  Along the way I challenged the self proclaimed chess master of the town to a game.  This turned out to be a good decision.  Not only did he leave the table with his tail between his legs, we also shared a bottle of run and his wife fed us all for a very reasonable price.  The other old guy who was also playing invited us to his son´s 19th Bday party which we happily accepted.

  The was in a typical open doored concrete dwelling with lots of close dancing.  Frosty did what frost does and suddenly the vibe came sketchy so the three amigos decided to move to the beach for a moonlit swim.  It took 2 hours for our rum drenched brains to navigate the 10 minute walk back to our hostel.

Back in Cididad Bolivar we went to see the voting taking place on the second. The Si con Chavez graffiti covered most buildings.  This made it difficult to do simple thing such as eat because almost everything was shut down the day before and the day of the election.  Frosty and I did manage to find a place that was illegally selling beers the day before the election and slurped back about a dozen of the funny little bottles for about 40 cents a pop.

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photo by: AndySD