Monte Roraima

Monte Roraima, Canaima National Park: Hours, Address, Monte Roraima Reviews: 5/5

Monte Roraima
5
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Monday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Tuesday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Wednesday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Thursday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Friday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Saturday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Sunday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
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About
The tallest tepui (flat-topped, cliff-edged mountain) in Venezuela’s great plains, Roraima’s fog-covered summit has interesting black rocks, pools, gorges and wildflower gardens to explore.
Suggested duration
More than 3 hours
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The area
Address
Troncal 10, Canaima National Park 8001 Venezuela
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.

5.0
262 reviews
Excellent
233
Very good
21
Average
5
Poor
2
Terrible
1

Adeodatus
Slovenia3 contributions
Dec 2019 • Friends
A gorgeous trek that managed to surprise despite high expectations. Very well thought out, well maintained paths, gorgeous countryside, plants and endemic animal species, waterfalls for natural dips and showers along the way, year around. And the top is like reaching another planet, a deserted Indian palace ruins in the clouds with gardens, statues and ponds.

We went with Vago tours (instagram account has some suggested departure dates but was very accommodating) with Luis who also organised a nice team of porters and the cook. We spent two nights totally alone on the top of Roraima, no other groups. A personalised experience, recommended.

Some suggestions to keep in mind:
As of 2020, the economy is pretty much dolarised, with brazilian reais also used as direct payment method in Santa Elena and around. Euro is less popular and will be treated as USD 1:1. The vast majority of hikers are Venezuelan and Brazilian. Similarly, the two languages and portuñol, the mix of the two, are easiest to travel around with.

There is little you can do against the vicious puri puri bites. They are called besos de la Sabana. Long sleeves and long pants and some scratching for a week or so afterwards.

The maintenance of the park and cleanliness were impressive. However, there was an uncomfortable situation when requesting the proof of payment for the entrance fees to the park. Do try insist on getting that as it would be a shame if the collected fees are not put to continued upkeep.

The paved road from Santa Elena to San Francisco is way better than the road approaching the border on the Brazilian side. The remaining one hour of unpaved part from San Francisco to the start of the trek is quite bumpy though.

All in all a wonderful, perhaps the nicest trek in South America considering the overall experience of beautiful nature and sustainable tourism without crowds.

Written January 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

icbernard
Marseille, France192 contributions
Mar 2018 • Couples
All superlative you can read are true, even more. I have been to many places in the world, but this place is one of a kind. It left such a deep impression, that my mind is still there when I close my eyes.
Basically, you'll find there what Earth and nature should be, and we you get back to the indian village and see the first car, electricity poles etc. you feel that there is something definitely wrong with what humans did ... I am not a mystic, at all, but this is what Roraima did to me.
OK, now some practical details.
Venezuela being what it is now, it is advised to enter from Brazil (via Boa Vista). Travel inside Venezuela is highly unreliable at present. The border is not like the rest of Venezuela, as you can find everything in Santa Elena de Uairen, due to the proximity with Brazil. There, you can pay everything in Reals.
In Brazil, the entry point will be Boa Vista, usually reached by plane. From the airport take a taxi to Pacaraima minibus station. Minibus are in fact 7 seat Opel cars. Of course, the last row is very tiny. You'll pay extra for any luggage you place on the roof. When they are full, they'll go to Canaima (border town with Venezuela), roughly 2:30 on a very good road though the savanna.
Note: a taxi can take you there (double price) directly from the airport.

Cars will drop you at the Brazilian border. There you will have to get in line with the Venezuelan migrants who want to enter Brazil. Indeed, there is only one office to enter and exit Brazil! If you are Brazilian, pregnant, or over 60, you can go in front of the line. This is also the case if you have a flight, when you re-enter Brazil. Show them your ticket, and you'll get straight to the officer. Otherwise, you'll have to wait between 2 and 6 hours (waiting time to get in and out Venezuela on Sundays). Try to skip Sunday, there are not many officials.
Then, you have to walk half a mile to the Venezuelan border. It closes randomly: at 5 pm, when we were there. Since we crossed at 7 pm, we went in illegally, the guards telling us to come back in the morning.
Note: on the Venezuelan side, there is a special office for foreigners, hence you don't have to go through a huge line.

DON'T DO what we did. Based on the word of the representative of the agency (see below), we did not go back to the border in the morning to get an entry stamp. He said, in the national park, nobody is going to check your passport. True. But when we tried to cross back to Brazil, they could only see our exit stamp a week ago. They would not let us go back unless we had an exit stamp from Venezuela. Of course, Venezuela would not give one, since we had never entered. It took 8h to solve this catch 22 ...
So, get your entry stamp no matter what.

One in Venezuela, you need to flag a taxi/private car to take you to Santa Elena, a few kilometers away, for 20 reals.
In Santa Elena, I strongly recommend the Yakoo lodge. A little out of the way, but a delightful place run by a German. They have all the info for different trips in the area including Roraima. Food is excellent, and they have a great outdoor swimming pool.
Otherwise, you have other posadas in town, most associated with a travel company. You can arrange everything there.

There are many companies proposing treks to Roraima.
You can also go the Roraima park by bus, to the Indian village San Francisco, and contact local guides to arrange, a guide and porters. This turns to be marginally cheaper (20%), but based on travelers I met, their equipment is in poor condition (leaky tents), and you have to buy your own food. They were not that happy.
My advice, shop around on the internet before you leave. There are a few good companies, all proposing the same packages, and at roughly the same price.
I ended up choosing Akanan Amazing Adventures, because they were the most reactive in providing me with answers.
This ended up a good choice. They change the camping gear every year, so you have good quality equipment. In addition, they are the only ones bringing folding chairs. This seems a gadget, but you cant' imaging how great it is to sit lying back watching the sunset or sunrise on Roraima. A little comfort is a great plus.
They are the only ones with a large open tent for lunch/dinner if it raining.
More importantly, they are the only ones to hire only Indians for the trek. Others use guides from Brazil or Venezuela.
It was perfectly organized, and they are reliable. Recommended.

All companies will start from/end to Santa Elena. In morning, you'll leave with a 4x4 to the park, and then to the end of dirt road to the last indian village, where you'll start to walk after lunch.

The cost: it depends upon the size of the group. We went out of season, to be alone,so we were the only ones. We paid 2x420$. Price goes down with the size of the group.
I strongly advice taking a porter (for your sleeping bag, air mattress, clothes). One porter will carry 15 kg of your stuff, enough for 2 people. Cost 25$. With a minimum of weight, you'll enjoy much more the trek, as some parts are steep.

When to go: during the dry season, i.e. Jan, Feb, March. You have less waterfalls, but the rain can make your life a bit miserable, especially in the slippery parts of the trek. In addition, during the dry season, the views are truly breathtaking. We were lucky, with one rainy afternoon during the 7 days.

What to take: as light as possible. Warm and light clothes. Rain gear. Swimming gear. STRONG mosquito repellent. Flashlight.

Mosquito: this is not a joke. They call them puri-puri. In fact, they are nasty tiny flies. When they bite, you feel nothing. Then the scratching starts 2 days later, way too late. Usually appearing at 6 am and 6 pm. Cover yourself from head to toe.

The trek takes 3 days to get to the top. Highly trained trekkers can do it in one day (running), but two days is easy if you are well trained. Not recommended, because taking the time, stopping every 10 min to wonder about how magnificent it is, is part of the experience.
If you are lucky to get Alexander as a guide (ask for him if your choose Akanan), he'll explain everything to you (you need to speak spanish though). He is very knowledgeable, and he has been exploring the Tepuys since he was 11. He has a collection of amazing pictures. He is ultratrail runner ...
When you head back, you'll do two days in one. This can be very strenuous if you are not trained, or out of shape. My wife was, and suffered a lot. We arrived barely before nightfall. But without training, doing any sport, my wife (she is 56) did it, without much problem. She has issues with heights and going downhill, but Alexander did an amazing job with her. So, I guess, anybody can do it.
Having said that, you can always ask the company to add a day to come back.
Note: Alexander family (father, mother, brother) carried all the stuff and food. The mother is a good cook, and we had too much to eat everyday (trekking food of course, but more than enough). Again, other groups had not as good an experience we had. We never used our energy bars.
Note: we never purified water. We always used running water (Alexander knew where to take it), and we had no problems.

I won't tell you what you'll see there. Better discovering yourself :-)
However, you are not supposed to leave any trash, which means pooing in a plastic bag, which is transported back.
Also, it is forbidden to take anything from the Tepuy. It is sacred to Indians, and we must respect that.

Again, I am not mystic. But I did feel a force (yes, a force) there. Maybe my running imagination (Conan Doyle's lost world, Jurassic Park, partly shot in the plain, Up), knowing that it is the oldest mountain on Earth, that's where the continents split ...
I don't know.
But as Alexander said, if you go with an open mind and heart, and respect the Tepuy, the Tepuy will grant you open access. As it is, when a chopper dropped non-trekkers at the top, there was a massive thunderstorm :-) The Tepuy does not like such noisy machines.
Even if you find it ridiculous, pay respect to the wall of the Tepuy when you get there (all Indians do it).

Thus ... be prepared. This is not like any other place on Earth. It may change you (in a very good way).

Contact me if you want more information.
Written April 2, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

laoda88
England7 contributions
I have just returned from a three week holiday in Venezuela which was split between 2 weeks trekking to Mount Roraima & Angel Falls and 1 week relaxing on Los Rocas islands.
If you are young, experienced and fit the trekking will challenge you but I am 62, overweight, had a hip replaced in February and suffer with lower back problems so it pushed the limits of my physical and mental capability way past what I believed I was capable of. My reward was an immense sense of achievement and an experience that has changed my outlook on life. You can only properly appreciate what you will achieve and experience if you get out there and do it and I recommend you do that while you can.

Because the physically challenging part of the trip is so personal I have restricted this report to suggestions that might make your journey easier.

Arriving at Caracas airport. If you are on an organised trip you will be met and advised on what to do or not do. Caracas is a dangerous city which is why you will see so much razor wire and barred windows. If you are traveling without support you will be engulfed by offers of assistance but I suggest you consult the airport information desk before accepting anything.

Take Euro or US$ cash in medium size notes (50 or 100) and ask your tour rep to organise exchange. Don't use an ATM because outside the airport you stand a good chance of being mugged at the machine and the rate is 50% of what you can get on the street. There is some room for negotiation so it's worth pushing the rate you are offered.
If you have no rep there will be plenty of offers but remember that you are looking for something higher than the bank rate. On arrival we were first offered 8 but got some at 9 an some at 9.5 (per Euro)

Take a can of insect killer. The sand flies and mosquitoes eat Deet for breakfast and then eat you. You can't do much about them when you are trekking other than the normal repellents and anti-histamine treatments but you can make sure that your tent is bug free before you zip up for the night. We were told that there were no sand flies on Mount Roraima so we must have carried them up there in the tents and sleeping bags because there was little respite.

If you go at this time of year you will get wet and when you are trekking it is difficult to get anything dry. Take good lightweight waterproof gear and plenty of dry socks. You have to cross two rivers and I suggest you get your costumes on and dress the other side because when we crossed it was waist high and running fast.

The camping grounds offer varying levels of comfort depending on where your tent is pitched. Get close to your fellow travelers because privacy is difficult. You need a good quality sleeping mat if you hope to get any sleep.

Base camp facilities were a disgrace so if nothing has changed and it is raining expect to be miserable.

The ascent was tough for me but be careful and you will reap the reward. We camped on ledges under rock overhangs which was OK but ours was home to the local tarantula population. Make sure you keep your bags and tents zipped and check any clothing you hang out to dry because we had a few temporary visitors.

The descent as usual was the most difficult but my friends and the guides made sure that I made it and when I took that last step I felt invincible....and totally shattered. After that everything else was easy, even sleeping in a hammock hostel at Angel Falls.

Los Rocas was a great place to relax and hang out after the physical stuff was over but the sand flies did spoil the day if the conditions were right. Don't underestimate this issue, every single visitor had dozens of bites and they itched for weeks.

Despite the insects this was one of the most fulfilling things I have done and I recommend it to anyone with a sense of adventure. It's a challenge but that's the price you pay for seeing such spectacular natural sights. Keep safe and enjoy.
Written November 24, 2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Andrew M
Dallas, TX131 contributions
Jan 2015 • Solo
The 6 day trek to Roraima I recently completed was an amazing experience and definitely up there with the best hikes I've done. It's a challenging hike though anyone with a moderate level of fitness and determination can complete it, especially since you don't need to carry your food or camping equipment, which is all done by the porters.

I would recommend the 7 day option if it's available as it will give you two full days up top and provide some protection against the unpredictable weather - heavy cloud cover will impede the vista of the surface and also the terrain down below. I met several hikers coming down the mountain who had experienced nothing but rain and clouds and hence didn't get to see what our group did.

The 6 day trek involves 2.5 days of trekking to arrive, 1.5 days on top and then 2 days descending. Day one is 12km and essentially a rest day as it's mostly flat; Day two (9km) is to the base of Roraima and involves a moderate ascent over the course of the trek + a river crossing; Day 3 involves a circa 5km hike to the top of Roraima and is a real battle as it's extremely steep in parts; The afternoon of day 3 generally involves setting up camp, recovering from the hike etc. but I would advise heading to the ""Jucuzzi" for a dip; Day 4 will be spent exploring the top, typically to the "Ventana" and also the highest point on Roraima, which are both within close vicinity to the entrance to Roraima, though may be spent doing the 8 hour return hike to the triple frontier; Day 5 involves back-tracking over what was done on days 2 and 3; Day 6 is day 1 in reverse.

If I had to do it over again then I would probably hire my own guide out from San Franciso de Yuruni (apparently $20 per day) and do the hike in 6 days with 3 days up top i.e. condensing what is traditionally done on day 1 and day 2 into one day and day 5 and 6 into one day also. While it is a lot more enjoyable doing the hike as part of a group, the issue is that you don't have any control over what you're going to see up top, and there is a lot. The traditional 6 day tour will only allow you to see a small portion of what's up there. Guides in Venezuela, particularly in Canaima National Park, are also some of the laziest and most useless you'll find anywhere, so they tend to do whatever is easy for them - usually whatever is closest and convenient, but not necessarily what is most interesting. That means you're unlikely to get to see the triple frontier unless it's expressly included in your tour as it's an 8 hour return hike i.e. probably about 7 hours more than most guides could be bothered doing.

For those in a rush and with a good level of fitness the 6 day trek could be condensed into 4 days, providing one day at the top. Hiring your own guide is only feasible if you have all your own camping equipment and are prepared to purchase your own food (there's not a lot of variety in Santa Elena). I would also recommend hiring a porter, not only for your equipment, but also for to carry out human waste (yes, visitors are required to carry out absolutely everything!). One other thing to consider if doing it without a group is that you'll need to pay for transport between San Francisco de Yuruni and the start of the trail (1 hour in a 4WD).

I did the tour with Backpacker Tours based on recommendations I'd seen on Trip Advisor but was far from impressed with their service. To begin with, they didn't respond to either of the 2 emails I'd sent them and I when I called them I found their phone manner to be absolutely horrible, as if they just couldn't be bothered. My fellow group members had the same issue but said that no other companies around town responded to them either. Don't expect much in the way of professionalism in Venezuela! My advice is to call the companies directly a few days before you're due to arrive in town to find out when they have tours leaving as there are often gaps of several days between departures, depending on how long it takes to get a group together. Santa Elena is not a particularly pleasant place so you're best off aiming to arrive the day before a tour is departing. You can't just arrive and assume there's a tour as you may be waiting around for several days.

The food provided by Backpacker Tours was very average compared to what other groups received and the portion sizes were insufficient (definitely bring snacks). They could improve their service by providing more regular hot chocolates (we only received it twice and you definitely want one up top as it's cold), some more snacks, improved portions, and coffee every morning (often it was just tea).

Our "guide" was a joke. He didn't speak English nor know anything about the history / flora of Roraima. He was your typical lazy Venezuelan guide who just wanted to do whatever was easy for him. I found the whole tour particularly unorganized as nothing was communicated to us properly. No pre-trip briefing was provided and hence we didn't have the option to discuss a potential trip to the triple frontier, though I suspect this was omitted on purpose because such a trip would have created extra work for our guide. Our guide also left some food at the bottom of the mountain, which I only found out about as I overheard him radioing the camp, but then denied it. But yet our first meal up top was particularly light-on.

The equipment was reasonable. The tents, while a bit old, are proper hard-wearing tents and appropriate for the region. Their tour price doesn't include camping mats or sleeping bags and I would definitely give what they have for rent a wide berth; The mats ($10 rental) looked to be about 1000 years old and I could have easily bought a better one brand new at K-Mart for the same price; The sleeping bags they rented were a disgrace, being just lumpy, heavy sacks of rubbish with very little filling or protection from the cold. If you're travelling overland in South America and don't have a mat then I'd advise picking one up from a camping store in Brazil, Colombia or Merida (which is one of the only places in Venezuela you'll find them easily).

I'm not sure how Backpacker Tours attained such a good reputation with the service they provide. No one in our group was impressed and no tips were provided to the guide by anyone, which says it all.

Overall, it is an amazing experience but it is critical that you go with a decent tour company and stipulate exactly what you want to do up front. If you're interested in the history or flora of the region then get a guide who is knowledgeable of these aspects. Similarly, insist on an English speaking guide if you're Spanish is weak, as there are many English speaking guides around.
Written February 2, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

JGT007
Leicester, UK11 contributions
Jul 2010
'New Frontier Adventures' arranged this trip for us, the boss is Claude (French Canadian, perfect English) who did everything we wanted/needed to make this a perfect trip: He booked internal flights for us, gave us good details of the necessary overland buses, arranged for us to be met at Caracas International airport, arranaged a taxi driver for us (The taxi driver also changed money safely for us at a good rate, and after our Roraima trip took us on a day tour of Caracus; not somewhere any sane foreigner who speaks no Spanish should go on their own!), Claude booked us into an airport hotel, and either arranged or told us all about the other bits that made this independently arranged trip work. (The overnight buses are good: Business class airplane seats, with A/C: take a blanket it works!)

We did all the arrangements by e-mail and paid in cash when thr trip was over (no insistance on payment in advance to someone we had never met was an important reason for our choice of company). Roraima is a fantastic place and New Frontier Adventures are a company I cannot rate higher. (Also highly recommended was Claude's guide Ricardo who knows all about the flora and history of the mountain and the local people, he spoke good English, was entirely flexible and prepared to do what we wanted, he is also a fantasic cook). Ricardo met us in Santa Elena and hired a local villager as our single porter for the tents and cooking stuff (good that he insists on local people as porters, ours lived near the start and has a family that lives at the first nights stop. Some of the companies bring their porters in from other areas, which gives the local people no benefits). Claude will try and arrange shared trips (so the cost is cheaper as ohers share the cost of the landrover from Santa Elena to the start of the walk, and the cost of the guide) but we would recommend the modest extra to have your own trip (just myself and my wife) as this gives absolute flexibility in how far you walk each day, when and where you go/stop and allows the sort of personal guide service that makes walking up and around this fantastic mountain one of the world's great trips.

Claude also arranged our internal flights and trip to Angel Falls. We only really decided to go to Canaima and Angel Falls because we were in the area to climb Roriama, but it was the surprise highlight of the trip. Canaima at sunset with a beer on the beach is a very special place (and one of the best photo opportunities there is: lagoon, palm trees, waterfal, tapui and a sunset: incredible). Claude booked us into a small hotel with simple chalet bedrooms, run by an Itialian family, simple clean and highly recommended. The motorised canoe trip to Angel falls, the night in a hammock under the falls and the trip back through the jungle and over the river rapids were all amazing. Don't go to Roraima and miss this extension (an extra 2 or 3 nights only).

We will use New Frontier Adventures again, Claude has started trips to Columbia, so we will have to see if Columbia has as much to offer as Venezuela.
Written March 6, 2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Monicsk
Charlotte, NC112 contributions
Sep 2015 • Couples
Roraima - what can you say? Beautiful place. It is like none other I have ever gone in my life. It is a once in a lifetime kind of trip.
If it were better organized, better taken care of, the magnificent place will probably attract more international tourist (or even local Venezuelan).
We went for 7 days 6 nights. The trekking was not easy, but doable.

One thing that I learn from this trip: it is very important to do your detailed research who you are going with. This is something that is still very difficult to do in Venezuela.
(One of the reason why I make sure I am writing in TripAdvisor).

If you are going with a Pemon guide, make sure they tell you what service and what food will be provided. Our Pemon guide was Omar Alvarez - maybe one that you would like to avoid if you could. 5 out of 7 days, we were not given lunch. Breakfast and Dinner was minimal. One of our dinner were pasta filled with sands.

Our local guide was Gregory Ruiz from Maracay - a guy that gave us a very detailed itinerary 2 months prior the trip, only to prove that half of the promises were empty. He has a very attractive Instagram account and started to bring local Venezuelan tourists to Roraima in 2014. He will tell you everything and anything to get you to go with him. He does not take feedback lightly.

Our group were consisted of 20 people. 3 were injured by day 3 with lesion, twisted ankle and well, just hunger.
We had 3 professional photographers on our group that were not able to take pictures like they wanted because most of the time, we were hurried by the guide.
Knowing how the top of Roraima is, the Pemon guide did not organize the sites to visit efficiently. Roraima is large and from one site to another on top can take a whole day.
Having travel to several places in the world, this will be the most unorganized tour I have ever taken.

When people ask me, would you recommend going to Roraima?
I said, yes, you should definitely go once in your life. Train yourself. Hike, practice with backpacks, bring enough snacks, make sure you are going with the most organized tour company that you can find, and make sure you tell them what kind of trip you are looking for - If you would like to take pictures, do yoga on the top, or just trek and leave.
Written November 1, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Damon G
9 contributions
Roraima tepui is a unique and beautiful place and well worth the hike. The following is a bit of info which might be of use to solo travelers who don't want to join a tour.

From Santa Elena, you take a bus or collectivo to San Francisco (a small town about 40 mins away). Accommodation may be difficult here unless you have a tent. I was told by every posada that they were full (even though I'm pretty sure they were all empty - weird - strangely not uncommon in Venezuela tho). You can probably ask anyone in town where to find a private guide. General price is about 2500 - 3000 per day (approx $15). This is cheaper than the tours, but is bare bones (no porters, no nothing). You can leave stuff in their house while you hike. Don't expect your guide to speak English or have any particular training. In fact, it is possible that they will be somewhat lazy (a common complaint, even for the organised tours). My guide also ate my food, drank beers and gave me the bill, had difficulty keeping up with me and refused to take me to Triple Point because he didn't have a rain coat. I had to lend him mine and I had to get wet instead. A fair amount of cajoling was required to get him to do his job. But it's worth having a guide on the top - navigation is very difficult when misty and you're unfamiliar. My guide got us a little lost at times.

I had my own camping gear and food. Your guide can probably organise this for extra money if you need. Fyi Super markets have very little choice (i ate tuna and oats the whole trip).

Most tours go for 6 days (2 days there, 2 days on top, 2 days back). If you're fit, you only need one day to get to base camp comfortably (it's easy). I'd recommend 5 days but you can do it in 4 if you bypass any relaxing. You can generally drink the water along the way. I advise buying your own map.

My guide quoted me 6000 one way transport from San Francisco to the hike start. This was likely a blatant rip off. He tried the same on the way back, but I checked with the driver and he said 500. Clearly I should have haggled!

A lot of people miss out on Triple Point because their guides cbf. It's 6-8 hours return. If you want to do this, be clear from the start.

If continuing north in Venezuela afterwards, it's easier to go back to Santa Elena to get on a night bus. It may be full or simply not stop at San Francisco.

Hope this helps! Overall, it's definitely worth going to the lost world. It's just unfortunate that you require a (potentially) lacklustre guide.

I'm unsure whether you *legally* need to have a guide or not and how this is policed. I initially was thinking of going without a guide but I'm glad I had one on top in the end. And glad I went with a private guide - the slow pace of the tour groups are frustrating!
Written May 4, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

SteelhorseNYC
World143 contributions
Feb 2014 • Friends
This was one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen! I am still looking for the words to describe everything I saw.
The unique landscape, the views, the water... if you are in Venezuela and do not do this - you are doing Venezuela and yourself an injustice.

Import information:
The standard package is 6 days - this is not enough! Roraima, because it is so much taller than everything around, makes its own weather, this usually includes bad weather: if you stay for too short a period you risk missing good days. 7 days is better, 8 days is best.
The total distance is about 95 kilometers
This hike is a must from December to May. Even during this dry season there is rain and plenty of fog, so going outside of this range could mean you get rain every day and see nothing at all - def. a dry season hike. Though December and January are best as there should still be residual water for the dozens of 300-600 meter waterfalls!!!

If you are fit (and I meant fit!) here are some ways to get more time up top:
be sure you arrange with your guide and porters to get an early morning start on the first day, and hike all the way to base camp (usually takes two days - though can be done in one 8 hour day), then summit to your "hotel" (a cave!) on the second day.
Again, if you are fit, you can hike back from your :hotel" at the summit, all the way to the village in one day (though this will be a very long day - plenty of people do it however).
The 2 days up, 1 day down is a very tough arrangement, that is why I recommend 8 days, in case you cannot hike that fast and that far - especially if you decide to carry most of your stuff (don't).
All of this MUST be arranged with your guide before hand.

Doing this will also mean that you do not have to go from place to place when on top of the mountain in a hurry - because though the individual sights are incredible, the hike itself from place to place is stunning!

Guides: I went with Frank (his son Terry and Phorphorito as porters) - he was a good guide, so you can ask for him ahead of time if you can (but, again, be sure to arrange everything ahead of time in terms of days and amount of hiking).

Porters: use them. if you are carrying more than a light backpack, you are wasting time and energy. Also, be sure your guide understands that he must use porters that will always be ahead of you so that you do not have to wait for lunch to be prepared, and do not have to wait for breakfast either - this will ensure more time walking around and enjoying this mind blowing landscape. I have seen groups lose hours every single day because their porters were always behind. Be clear about this up front.

If you go to San Francisco or Paraitepuy you can get a guide without having to go through an agency. Though you risk getting a bad guide and bad porters (of which there are plenty). But if you are money conscious, and are willing to bear a bigger load of your stuff, you will be fine.

When on top be sure to see:
The highest point in Venezuela - especially during sunset
TRiple point - where Venezuela, Guyana and Brazil meet.
Sleep in Brazil and go to the look out over the Brazilian Jungle basin
Go to the lake in Guyana
Go through Crystal Valley
Go to the Jacuzzis (during the day, especially when hot)
Go to the lookout (windows) beyond the Jacuzzis (where you should see the nose, and then a few minutes to the west, Kukenan)) - this will be one of the most spectacular views of your life!

It's important to get to places when it is clear - but also important to remember that unless the weather is actively bad, the fog comes and goes, so waiting 2-30 minutes will often mean the view will open up. Be patient, enjoy!

Food will be provided by the guide/porters, and is usually very good. If you have any restrictions, or prefer certain foods for breakfast (for example) talk it over with the guide ahead of time. Our guides brought cantaloupe for god's sake!

If you get a guide at Paraitepuy it is possible you can get one for about 7000 - which will include food and he will carry your stuff! Setting stuff up ahead will cost more money (around 11-14,000 Bolivares per person) but will ensure more customization.
Written February 8, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Mashka M
5 contributions
Feb 2019 • Solo
I was dreaming about climbing Roraima since I was 23. Now I am 39. So I was looking for the recommendations and decided to try with hike venezuella since the reviews were very good. I contacted them about possible dates and they suggested to pick up any date I wanted,saying they were 95% sure they would make a group. So I did. The tickets were bought the hotels were booked, but ten days before the trip i was informed that they couldn't find enough people and my trip was cancelled. So i started to look for someone who could help make my dream come true and luckily I found Caburai Adventure and an amazing guy whose name is Abraao Filho.
He managed to organize the whole trip in five days. He also arranged a private transfer to Venezuela and I realized that getting it was the totally right decision. I was picked up early in the morning in Boa Vista. Abraao and his assistant did their best to help me to get through the border without long waiting in lines of Venezuelan refugees. I am a Russian citizen so I had no problem to get there, but I was told, American citizens might have troubles due to the political situation.
We picked up our guide and porter in San Francisco and drove to Paratepui.
Unlike most of itineraries 5 nights 6 days plus 2 overnights in santa elena, my trip was 7 days 6 nights and it was perfectly planned.
It took us 2 and half days to get to the top of Roraima. I am quite fit so walking wasnt a big problem but a backpack was. I mean 10 kg makes a huge difference,so for me getting to the base camp -the second day was the hardest.
So either hire a person who will carry your things, or like me-leave everything you can in a base camp before climbing the mountain. It made a huge difference for me.
My guide was Omar Gonzalez and his son Rono. Omar is an amazing person who.was a perfect guide.
I speak no.Spanish and Omar speaks very little English but I had no problems with communicating with them. I read that people often complain about a lack of food, but Omar organized everything perfectly so the food was more than enough with freshly baked pancakes and corn bread every morning.
I was a single female traveller but I felt extremly safe travelling with this gentleman and his son.
Now,you have to be fit to climb Roraima. You have to be fit to walk on the top. The final cut of the way up is dangerous and requires strength and balance( i am not talking about stamina).
Take more clothes. It is not only cold upthere but it is constantly raining. The shoes are always wet,so having another dry pair is a must or you will suffer like I did.
Be prepared not to shower for several days. The little flies puri puri cut out micro pieces of your skin it is.extremly itchy,so it is a good idea to.bring something antihystamine.
On the way back while crossing Kukenan river I fell down and strained my ankle. I limped to the camp but I couldn't walk the next day to Paratepui. So Omar took my backpack walked all the way to the village and sent a motobike to pick me up. I was lucky to get injured next to the place where a vehicle can get to.
After we arrived to San Elena where Abraao picked me up and delivered safely to Boa Vista.
Getting to Roraima is a unique experience. You have to have a strong body and a strong heart. But.it is worth it.
Written February 6, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Angela C
Sandown, UK2 contributions
Nov 2014 • Solo
Mount Roraima is an incredible place, and a very challenging trek, especially if you choose to carry your own pack. I decided to have a personal porter as I wanted to enjoy the trek and not be weighed down by a heavy pack.
I went on a trek organised by Backpacker Tours. I arrived on the overnight bus with about an hour to spare before trek departure, and I needed to organise porter, repack my rucksack, find somewhere to leave excess clothes etc. Backpacker Tours couldn’t have been less helpful. They were unfriendly, and denied having received payment from Hike Venezuela, and I wasn’t even on the trek list. A very stressful start to a 6 day trek, especially after a night’s ‘sleep’ on a bus, when we were hauled out for a full luggage search at a police check point.
The group of 21 walkers plus porters & guide was far too large for the mountain. Even Backpacker’s own leaflet states that the maximum capacity of the summit campsites is 14 people.
On the plus side the guides and porters were excellent, working long hours to provide us with nutritious food and setting up camp and dismantling tents, often in the pouring rain.

Why are so many people climbing Mt Roraima? Most people on my trip had no idea what a special place it is, with its unique environment home to many endemic species. This is a fragile place and cannot cope with the numbers of trekkers tramping round on the summit.
The Venezuelan government should be doing more to control the number of trekkers, and clamp down on this over-exploitation by companies that are just making the most of the present lack of control without regard for the future of the mountain.
Written February 9, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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