FAQs. Frequently Asked Questions

 Most all of our preferred destinations are in National Parks, and by their location alone, are segregated and not exposed to any of the pressures and political climates that exist in the big cities. Venezuela, is classified as a third world country, an oil-producing nation, interspersed with wealth and beautiful historical cities, such as Caracas. They are absolutely worth a visit, however, some of these civilized cities house many underdeveloped, less fortunate communities, that are not surprisingly, exposed to relatively high crime rates. Consequently, these cities must be visited with consciousness and alertness, in fact an organized/supervised visit would be our recommendation.
How ecologically correct is the tour?
Very! We respect the laws of the land totally, no collection of fauna / flora, rocks etc., no graffiti of any kind, hikes are confined to paths, rubbish / garbage is collected and recycled. In short, we have total respect for the indigenous communities and their unspoiled environment.
Do I need any special visas to travel in Venezuela?
If you are a citizen of Canada or the EC, presently (as of November 2015), all you need is a valid passport. However, political situations change overnight so we still recommend that you check with the Venezuelan Embassy or Consulate web sites (or google) to ensure that you have the up to date information.  To travel for up to 30 days a visitor’s pass will be given to you on your international flight (although this recently changed too – only a customs form will be required and a stamp will be made in your passport on arrival. Your information will be entered in the “system” for possible future reference. On departure your passport will be stamped and your information reviewed in the system to ensure compliance with the visa timing.

If you are a citizen of the United States you now need a visa to enter Venezuela (since March 2015), please see the following link for more information on applying for a tourist visa http://goo.gl/Od1BKk. In any case you will need to attend an interview personally at your local Consulate or Embassy and whilst the advice given suggests applying 3 months prior to any trip we have had clients most recently who have visited their local Consulate and received their visa same day. 3 months is the worst case scenario.

For all other nationalities please check the latest visa requirements with the local Venezuelan Embassy or Consulate.

Important – please ensure you have at least 6 months left before your passport expires – any less, can lead to problems at the point of origin.

How friendly are the Pemón Indians?
Very! Their very name Pemón means ‘people’ or ‘friends’. Many of the guides have lived for long periods within their communities, partaking in their culture and even playing football (soccer) in some of the villages.
Since we are sleeping in hammocks do we have to worry about tropical storms in Canaima?
All overnight accommodations are under cover in Churuatas (Indian dwellings). There are occasionally storms throughout the year, but nothing that should cause any concern.
Should I have any concerns once I am on the trip?
You will be under the care of experienced and knowledgeable guides and friendly hand picked personnel, the guides we work with have been guiding in these parts for years. In Canaima the Pemón too will take good care of you and our guides speak great English. You should receive comfort in the fact that many have preceded you, from all over the world, from the ages of 8 through 80! From their feedback over the years, we know that they all would return to Canaima – in a heartbeat.
What happens in the case of medical emergencies?
The guides have walkie talkies so are in contact with the main lodges and each lodge is also in radio contact with the outside world plus there is a medical post within close proximity of the communities in Kamarata and Canaima. All major cities too have clinics or hospitals – even Los Roques has it’s own “ambulatorio”.
How strenuous is the Canaima National Park/ Angel Falls trip?
It can be a little challenging occasionally, if you want to experience all of the options available on the expedition.
Do we have to carry our bags?
There is some hiking involved and we will be on the move almost every day but transport of bags and supplies etc. will be supervised in jeeps and on boats. It will only be necessary to take essentials (sun block, cameras, swimwear etc.) on individual jaunts at each location.
Do I need special inoculations before I travel to Venezuela?
Malaria tablets are recommended for the Orinoco Delta. If visiting the Amazonas deep jungle regions it is advisable to check with your physician regarding which inoculations are recommended.
What do I need to bring with me?
MEN
CLOTHING (quick drying everything!) – a list will be provided well before your visit to help you pack and buy the appropriate clothing etc:

  • 2 pair of long pants (suggest one pair of “zip pants” that convert to shorts)
  • 1 or 2 pairs shorts
  • 2 long sleeved shirts (suggest button-down lightweight, light-colored ones)
  • 3-4 short-sleeved / tank tops
  • Light-weight waterproof windbreaker or rain jacket
  • 1-2 bathing suits
  • Lightweight hiking boots or comfortable walking shoes
  • Closed toed river or water shoe
  • Sun hat with brim / baseball cap
  • 2-3 pair of lightweight socks for hiking
  • Simple sandals or flip-flops for restaurant outings

MISCELLANEOUS GEAR (no aerosols – biodegradable products only):

  • Passport (keep a copy of your original separately)
  • Quart-size water bottle
  • Headlamp or flashlight with extra batteries (suggest a “hands free” headlight)
  • Camera with extra batteries and charger (kept in small drybag or waterproof container)
  • Towel (quick drying “Pak-towels” are excellent, cotton ones never dry in humidity)
  • Small day-backpack or “fanny” pack
  • Sunscreen for lips and body, personal medications (natural toothpaste, bug repellant)
  • Soap, shampoo and washing liquid / powder (all please biodegradable!)

OPTIONALS:

  • Portable musical device (walkman or I-pod)
  • Binoculars
  • Ear plugs
  • At least one pair of sun glasses
  • Assortment of Ziplocs and one tall-size kitchen garbage bag (good to pack clothing in 2-gallon freezer Ziploc bags for organizational and cleanliness reasons)
  • Pencils, writing pads, English/Spanish dictionaries, soccer balls (deflated) and pumps for the Pemón
  • US Dollars for tips / crafts

Click here for a printable gear checklist.

IMPORTANT:
Please note that we are operating an ecotourism trip and as such it is important to set an example within these communities. Hence we are suggesting biodegradable personal hygiene items and bringing used batteries and “cans / plastic” items back with us for correct disposal.

WOMEN
CLOTHING (quick drying everything!):

  • 2 pair of long pants (we suggest one pair of “zip pants” that convert to shorts)
  • 1 or 2 pairs shorts
  • 2 long sleeved shirts (we suggest button-down lightweight, light-colored ones)
  • 3-4 short-sleeved tops / tank tops
  • Light-weight waterproof windbreaker or rain jacket
  • 1-2 bathing suits
  • Lightweight hiking boots or comfortable walking shoes
  • Closed toed river or water shoe
  • Sun hat with neck strap or baseball cap
  • 2-3 pair of lightweight socks for hiking
  • Simple sandals or flip-flops for restaurant outings
  • 2 sarongs or casual evening wear outfits

MISCELLANEOUS GEAR (no aerosols and all biodegradable personal hygiene products):

  • Passport (keep a copy separately)
  • 1 or 2 Bandanas
  • Quart-size water bottle
  • Headlamp or flashlight with extra batteries (we suggest a “hands free” headlight)
  • Camera with extra batteries and plenty of film (kept in small drybag or waterproof container)
  • Towel (quick drying “Pak-towels” are excellent, cotton ones never dry in humidity)
  • Small day-backpack or fanny pack
  • Sunscreen for lips and body, personal medications, natural toothpaste, bug repellant, safety pins, Purell.
  • Soap, shampoo and washing liquid / powder (all biodegradable please!)

OPTIONALS:

  • Portable musical device (walkman or I-pod)
  • Binoculars
  • Ear plugs
  • At least one pair of sun glasses
  • Thin panti-liners (minimizes panty count – trust us on this one)
  • Disposable waterproof or panoramic cameras
  • Assortment of Ziplocs and one tall-size kitchen garbage bag (we actually like to pack our clothes in 2-gallon freezer Ziploc bags for organizational and cleanliness reasons)
  • Pencils, writing pads, English/Spanish dictionaries, soccer balls (deflated) and pumps for the Pemón
  • US Dollars for tips / crafts

Click here for a printable gear checklist.

IMPORTANT:
Please note that we are operating an ecotourism trip and as such it is important to set an example within these communities. Hence we are suggesting biodegradable personal hygiene items and bringing used batteries and “cans / plastic” items back with us for correct disposal.