The power of Niagara Falls is breathtaking, but there is a waterfall from where the water has a 19 times longer fall – Angel Falls in the national park of Canaima in Venezuela. This is the highest uninterrupted waterfall in the world. Niagara Falls is 52 meters (165 feet) high, but water in Angel waterfalls falls from an incredible 979 meters (3,212 feet), which is really a sight to be seen.
World fame is yet to come because it’s not that known to the world as Niagara or Victoria Falls, and it’s not very easy to reach. National Park Canaima extends to over three million hectares of mountainous areas surrounded by the overgrown jungle in southeast of Venezuela and it’s a part of the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1994. The most eye-catching are Auyantepui Mountains, whose peaks are flat, and sides high and steep. From one of those sides falls the Angel Waterfall.
It got the official name by the American aviator Jimmie Angel, who “discovered” it in 1933, while in the local Pemon dialect is called “waterfall of the deepest place”, and a rock on the mountain from which it is falling – Auyantepui – “Mountain of the God of Evil” or “Devil’s Mountain”. Reaching the waterfall is definitely a bigger adventure than paying the tickets and a five minute ride by the excursion boat. Given that it is located 300 kilometers (186 miles) from the nearest town the waterfalls can be reached only by a longer boat ride through the jungle or by flying in a rented plane. Waterfall often acts like a prima donna when it is being photographed. Infrequently mountaintop is overshadowed by the clouds or, if it is windy, the waterfall, in its long fall, disperses in a fog of water drops. Therefore it is best to visit it during the rainy season in Venezuela, from May to November, as a result of rains is the abundant quantity of water falling down the waterfall, while in the summer season it can virtually dry up.
Unless you intend to take a machete and put a tent on the back, so that you can make your way through the jungle to Angel Falls, to get there you have to pay an arrangement for airplane from Caracas and Ciudad Bolivar to Canaima and sleep in the bungalows in the national park. If you are on vacation on the Margarita islands, take the opportunity – from there are organized safari trips by plane over the jungle of Canaima and a flight literally, by the waterfall.
Photo by: Erik Cleves Kristensen