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Cueva del Guácharo National Park
Cueva del Guácharo National Park is located
12 km from aripe in Monagas state of Northwest Venezuela.
This national park covers an area of 627 km² and protects the
delicate ecosystem of
Guácharo Cave that also gives the name to this nature
Guácharo Cave is largest natural underground system that
measures a total of 10.2 km (6.3 miles) in length. One of the first
visitor of the cave was famous German (Prussian) biologist Alexander von
Humboldt. Cueva del Guachara gets its name from guacharo birds or
oilbird that live inside. This nocturnal bird lives in the cave system
by day and leaves it to hunt by night. It has a radar location system
similar to bats to navigate underground as well as night rain forests.
You can camp out at the entrance to the cave and watch these beautiful
rare birds leave the cave around 6pm and come back early in the morning
around 4 am.
You can get here by bus or by getting a car from Caripe or
Cumana, closest large settlement close to the cave entrance. Try to keep your voice down then you enter the cave.
Many of its local inhabitants like oil birds and bats might be
scarred by loud sudden noises. The temperature inside the cave
usually remains at the comfortable
19 °C with humidity up to 100%. Although the whole underground
system measures over 10 km in length only small fraction of this
is open to the public.