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Venezuelan Amazon Rainforest

Amazonas state, located in southern Venezuela, is made up of four departments, of which two (Casiquiare and Río Negro) are within the Amazon basin . They border to the south with the Brazilian Amazon .

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Amazon-Venezuela state map

Amazonas-Venezuela state map. Source: Millennium Dark [ CC BY-SA 4.0 ]

Although what is called the Venezuelan Amazon Region (RAV) is basically the Río Negro municipality, which covers a little more than 30% of the state territory, and also includes part of the Bolívar and Delta Amacuro states.

The capital of the Amazon state is Puerto Ayacucho, where more than 60% of the state population lives, located in the confluence of two large basins: the Amazon River and the Orinoco River, which it shares with Colombia .

Flora and fauna of the Amazonas state-Venezuela

Its forests are part of what has been called the “Green Lung of the Planet” and constitute one of the most prodigious reserves of natural resources in the world.

Emperor’s Cane / Brightly colored flowers in the Colombian Amazon. Source: Jonathan Vélez Giraldo [ CC BY-SA 4.0 ], via Wikimedia Commons

Its pluvial forests are 75 million years old and together with identical ecosystems along the green equatorial belt of the world passing through Africa and Asia, it interacts with the polar zones maintaining the climatic balance of the planet.

In just 100 km2 of jungle there are 1,500 different species of flowering plants and 750 species of trees , 400 species of birds (1,800 in the entire Amazon), 150 species of mammals , 100 of reptiles and 50 of amphibians .

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White-throated Piapoco (Ramphastos tucanus cuvieri) Source: Fernando Flores[CC BY-SA 3.0] , via Wikimedia Commons

Amazonas State Tourism -Venezuela

The natural tourist attraction of the Venezuelan Amazon region is made up of parks and natural monuments that occupy 34% of the state territory.

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Original image by: Fernando Flores [CC BY-SA 3.0]

In addition, in the Amazon, beautiful National Parks and natural monuments are concentrated, among which are: Piedra la Tortuga, Serranía La Neblina, Cerro Yapacana, Duida-Marahuaca.

As well as the Cerro Autana (one of the tepuyes in southern Venezuela, approximately 1,300 meters high), the Tobogán de la Selva (a gigantic slab through which water runs forming a natural slide) and the Piedra de Cocuy, among others. tourist places of the Amazon-Venezuela .

Gastronomy of the Amazon state

The The gastronomy of the state is basically based on foods that are within reach, mainly fish, but also turtle, limpet and even tapir meat, although this species of mammal so important for the Amazonian ecosystem is threatened and although it is considered in the culture of many tribes or communities indigenous as a sacred animal.

In Puerto Ayacucho and in the interior of the state there are restaurants where various typical dishes are served, such as turtle prepared in its carapace. Also fish such as morocoto, curbina, palometa.

As well as the bocón, the caribe, the guabina, the pavón and the lau lau; among the birds : curassow, wild duck, turkey and hen.

Different types of bread are also prepared, such as the mañoco, which is made with bitter yucca in whose processing certain native implements are used, such as the sebucán, the ray, and the budare.

In Amazonas, fruits such as pijiguao, túpiro, cocura, moriche , cupuazú, curuba, manaca, pineapples and ceje are grown.

The latter is collected throughout the state, especially in the valleys of the Manapire, Casiquiare, Sipapo, Cuao and Ventuari rivers; Ceje oil is extracted from it , endowed with medicinal properties.

Traditions of the Amazon state

The customs and traditions of the Amazonas state correspond to the testimonies about events and knowledge, significant for their indigenous communities , which are transmitted from generation to generation.

Its traditions include rituals, prayers, songs, stories, legends, celebrations, in short, its wide and rich folklore.

In the state of Amazonas-Venezuela we find 20 ethnic groups , among which the following stand out: Yanomami , Guahito, Piaroa , Yekuana , Yeral Curripaco, Bare, Baniva, Puinave, Piapoco, Hoti, Warequena, Yaborana.

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Young man of the Yanomami ethnic group. Original photography by: Christian Caron

The folkloric manifestations are rich in native dances and songs, with music played with typical wind and percussion instruments.

Among the indigenous dances is the traditional Ye-kuana dance. As for musical instruments, there is the use of morrocoy shells and bamboo flutes.

The different ethnic groups have the custom of celebrating a Warime festival every three years; This festival is held to celebrate both a great harvest and new marriages within the community.

Also, on the occasion of the arrival of the rains during the months of May, June and July, indigenous dances are performed in Puerto Ayacucho and San Fernando de Atabapo.

Crafts in the Amazon

The crafts of the Amazonas state are related to the mythology of its inhabitants, their raw material is the leaves of different types of palms such as moriche , cumare, seje, cucurito, chiquichique.

In addition, soft fabrics such as hammocks, hammocks, bags, baby-carriers, dresses, guayucos and their looms are made; and pottery; wood carvings.

artisan at dyer
Craft Fair in Tintorero – Craftswoman in Tintorero. Author: Genesis Garcia. CC BY-SA 3.0

Also the members of the ethnic groups that inhabit the Venezuelan Amazon are experts in making body adornments; implements for hunting, fishing; and musical instruments.

Another craft manifestation is the pintaderas, which are made from a circular or rectangular piece of wood carved with different designs according to their future use and function. These are impregnated on the carved side of the seal with paintings from the onoto and the caraña.

The Venezuelan Amazon is an unmissable destination that invites us to explore spectacular landscapes of savannah and jungle, discover its clear and black water rivers, its waterfalls, rapids, and its imposing tepuyes and hills.

Ecuadorian Amazon Rainforest

Brazilian Amazon Rainforest

Bolivian Amazon Rainforest

Peruvian Amazon Rainforest

This post is also available in: Español (Spanish)

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