Los Roques archipelago is a federal dependency of Venezuela made up of some 350 islands, cays, and islets in a total area of about 41 sq km. The archipelago is located 128 km (80 mi) directly north of the port of La Guaira. The islands' pristine coral reef attracts visitors from around the world, some of whom come in their own yachts and anchor in the inner, protected shallow waters. Development and tourism are controlled. Because of the wide variety of seabirds and rich aquatic life, the Venezuelan Government declared Los Roques a National Park in 1972. Image courtesy of NASA.
Ciudad Guayana lies on the south bank of the Orinoco River, the second largest in South America, at its confluence with the Caroní River (lower left). Islands have developed in the Orinoco in a wide spot opposite the city (upper left). Guayana is one of the newest cities in Venezuela, constructed in 1961 as a new economic center for the interior of Venezuela, especially for major industries such as iron, steel, and aluminum. The city stretches 40 km (24 mi) along the south bank of the Orinoco and is one of Venezuela's largest. A low barrage (lower left) dams the Caroní as a water supply for the city. The Orinoco River is muddy brown, carrying sediment produced by erosion of the Andes Mountains far to the southwest. By contrast, the Caroní is clear blue, as it drains the ancient landscapes of the Guyana Highlands, where erosion is much slower. A mixing zone can be seen in the middle of this image. The clear Caroní water produces a less muddy zone for tens of kilometers downstream of the confluence (this part of the Orinoco flows almost due east, left to right). Image courtesy of NASA.
Mount Roraima on the right is the world's highest tepui (tabletop mountain), its peak is 2,835 meters; on the left is Kukeras Tepui.
The Federal Legislative Palace in Caracas houses the National Assembly.
The large courtyard of the Federal Legislative Palace in Caracas is beautifully landscaped with large trees, shrubs, and a fountain.
The fountain in the courtyard of the Federal Legislative Palace in Caracas.
The Twin Towers of Parque Central, the 60-story skyscrapers that for decades have been architectural icons of Caracas. The West Tower opened in 1979 and the East Tower in 1983; until 2003 they were the tallest skyscrapers in Latin America.
One of the Twin Towers of Parque Central, the 60-story skyscrapers that for decades have been architectural icons of Caracas. The West Tower opened in 1979 and the East Tower in 1983; until 2003 they were the tallest skyscrapers in Latin America.
The Simon Bolivar Statue in Plaza Bolivar in Caracas.
A floral tribute at the statue honoring Simon Bolivar in Caracas' Plaza Bolivar.
Aves Island (Birds Island), 547 km (340 mi) north of the Venezuelan mainland in the Caribbean Sea, has been the subject of numerous territorial disputes. Venezuela claims it is an island, which grants it a 200-nautical-mile (370 km) exclusive economic zone. Mostly sand with a bit of scrubby vegetation, it is sometimes completely submerged during hurricanes. The size of the island today is only a fraction of what it was in the mid-17th century. The island's low profile makes it a navigation hazard and many ships have been wrecked there. It serves as a resting and breeding place for seabirds and the green sea turtle. Image courtesy of NASA.