This was the only time we picked a place to stay according to lonely planet's pick. I should have imagined that it would be packed with yelling, smelling backpackers and the stuff there would deal with as accordingly. 100% i felt that the stuff knew for a fact that we were dumb, cheap tourists who should just pay the room and get the f*** outa-here.
Maybe, i shouldn't be that ironic with the stuff, not knowing what their eyes might have seen so far, but just for the fun of it I have to deliver their quotes and doings there.
a) the cute asian/latino girl at any/all questions we might had she felt obliged to roll her eyes like 4 times in a row, speak english in her own pace/accent and felt we're at least stupid for not getting 100% of what she just said (which was always non sense).
b) We booked their Canaima excursion (WHICH YOU SHOULD NEVER DO!!). They charged us the ridiculous amount of 1700bolivares (250euros).
First they told us our plane would leave at 11am, then she woke us up at 6am and told us that the plane would be leaving in 30 minutes!! Thank the lord we already had our suitcases up and ready.
We go to Canaima village (the best place i've been in my life) and the shady part starts. First we wait at the airport more than an hour for our guide to arrive. The airport is 5mins walking from the "posada." His first sentence was: "we're sorry, we don't have enough rooms, please the same-sex friends have to stay together in 4beds rooms" !!!!!! I went with my friend, but the last thing i wanted was to share a room--especially at this price! So, we did our fight and we did get our own room. The room was one of the ***tiest rooms i've ever stayed in my life (even worst that then one with a fan in Don Carlos). No towels of course and the room was just a tin, but at least it did have a shower (a smelly one of course). I wouldn't mind for any of the above if the price was right. The provided food was a also a huge joke.
What really pissed me off though was that by walking into the village there were numerous superbly beautiful posadas and with a sea view and a balcony! Their 2persons price was around 150-200 bolivares (remember the trip cost 1700 p/p!!).
Besides the amazing surroundings, the guide was a nice guy and could speak fair english.
Also, to be fair, their campsite in Angels Falls is well placed and nice.
What i'm trying to say is do take this amazing trip at any cost, but make sure u don't book through them, u can get a much more pleasant experience with the same amount of money (we heard kayak is better).
c) When we took the excursion we booked the aircon room for when we return. The asian/latino girl totally didn't book it and we had to stay in the fan room since there was no other availability in the historic center. Trust me, u'll feel claustophobic in there and it's a shame to stay in a poor hotel in venezuela since this is a cheap country.
d) The bit older Venezuelian stuff guy was a figure i'll never forget. Our first encounter was when we woke up at 6am and they offered my free coffee. The pot though, was empty and i left it open so they'd notice. The exact moment i left it of my hands he jumped on me and scolded me "please close it, so that others can drink" gee mate!
Later on he told me my favorite venezuelian quote when i asked him to book me a taxi for 5am (what i've done everywhere in Venezuela, even in the middle of nowhere). He didn't book, didn't tell me that he didn't book and when i asked him later on if he booked the taxi after all, he took his pretty face and whispered in my ear "this is not europe, my friend" How funny!!
The aircon room is nice, classy and cheap (150blv--20euros), plus the location is central. The rest of the hotel and the stuff is embarrassing.
This small hotel is located in a late colonial building in the historic centre of Ciudad Bolivar. There are 14 rooms located around an attractive courtyard with a fountain. The courtyard is decorated with interesting antiques and old objects.
There is a dining room on the ground floor, but as there were only 4 guests when we were there, we ate at the nearby Posada de Angostura, which is under the same management. Rooms have airconditioning, chic private shower room, satellite TV and minibar.
Guests are provided with a key for the external gate, which is kept locked for security purposes.
On the roof is a small pool, though this was not open when we visited. It is worth going up to the roof anyway, for sunset views of the Orinoco river (see photo).
Very basic hotel. Had cucarachas and tiny ants in my room without window and saw some fast moving little animals in the inner court at night. Most probably rats. Aircon was very loud. But it's cheap and safe, paid 35000 Bs. in Dec. 07 and 40000 Bs. in Jan. 08. The other advantage is that it's only a few steps to the Tasca La Ballena (see restaurant tips). No english is spoken.
What a nice place! Located ½ hour outside of the city centre, this hostal is a true oasis of peace and green. They offer hammocking as well as rooms with and without aircondition. Nice sorroundings, pool, eating room, animals... very calm and relaxed atmosphere and nice owners/service. It's owned by Gekko Tours who do trips to Canaima/Rio Caura and more and it's a perfect place to start your trip since you can communicate directly with the operator during your stay. They also offer a shuttle service to town 2 a day. Good food too, reasonable prices.
I stayed here in May and I think I was nearly the only person staying here - had the place to myself. The rooms are very basic, but they do have good air conditioning. There is a hammock in the rrom if you feel like sleepling in it or just relaxing. The showers are kind of strange and dont have much pressure, they have a heating element combined with the head which makes the water luke warm, but the weather is so hot you dont really need it hot. There is a good sized pool which I had all to myself. The bar upstairs over looks the city, but at night make sure you have mozzie repelent - they nearly ate me alive. I think the resturuant is attached to the bar, but my spannish is so bad I could never work it out. None of the staff speak much english and are not used to non- spannish speakers. Again this was booked through Osprey Expeditions
I have stayed at Posada Don Carlos three times (all in June 2007) and I think it is a lovely place. The posada is situated in a beautiful restored mansion in the old town.
I had a room with fan and a bathroom and it was 45 000 Bs. There are no single rooms so the price is the same for one person as it is for two.
Prices are going up in Venezuela and I was told the price for the room was going up to 55 000 Bs and for the hammocks to 20 000 Bs.
There is a kitchen you can use and one computor with free Internet. There are plenty of chairs and tables in the communal area were you can have a chat with other travellers. The last time I stayed at the posada I was asked if I wanted to eat dinner at the posada. It was 20 000 Bs and very delicious. First there were soup and garlic bread and then chicken with rise, broccoli and coliflower.
If you are leaving very early in the morning ask them the evening before to call a taxi for you. I was told to go out to get a taxi from the road by the river (I asked if it was okay and it was the woman said), but the nightguide didnt want me to go as it was still dark and dangerous. He woke up one of the girls and she called a taxi for me. The next time I asked them the evening before to call a taxi for me, but that time it was not that early. The third time it was later in the morning and no problems to walk down to the river to find a taxi.
I spent a WE in La Casita which is owned by Peter, a german buissnessman who also arranges tours to the local touristic points (Canaima, etc...). I enjoyed the animals freely walking around (a tucan, a perrot, monkeys etc...), the clean swimming pool and the organization of the place.
They have 3 lovely bungalows (see pictures) that are a must. Other tourists complained about the other rooms being too hot (despite AC) and the place suffering from too many large groups arriving and disturbing couples travelling
The 3 bungalows and the swimming pool.
I enjoyed being away from the city for a week-end, so relaxing.
You don't need to cook as breakfast, lunch and dinner can be fixed for you (7000, 12 000bolivares), u can pick up a bear for 1500 bolivares or a fruit salad to eat around the pool for only 40 000bolivares a night!
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