I travelled around Venezuela for the first time in 2002, I had the best time of my life, so much so that I have returned to Venezuela twice since and will go again.
For the Angel falls trip myself and my friend took an overnight coach from Maracay, which is th emain transport hub for buses to get you just about anywhere in Venezuela after landing in Caracas. A bus from Caracas to Maracay took about 2 hrs ( I think) The bus to Cuidad Boliver(the jumping off point for all trips to the falls) from Maracay took 12 hrs but it stops regularly and everyone gets off and chats whilst sipping hot coffee from the cafes that are always open in the bus terminals. TOP TIP: Make sure you have a jacket and a fleece and long trousers for the bus journey. I remember sitting there watching people getting on with quilts and blankets and looking at my pal and we were saying 'Omg why on earth would you need a blanket, it's so hot!' Well, we soon found out when the bus started moving and the air con came on, blasting icy cold air all night long, not nice. We were clinging onto each other for any warmth we could get as we were wearing the same thing we pretty much wore throughout the trip, shorts and t shirts with hiking boots. The many stops were heavenly as the wonderful heat hits you everytime you step out fo the 'fridge on wheels'.
We stayed in a hostel facing the Orinocco, it had a huge terrace and loads of info. The rooms were the most basic anyone could imaginge, really rough and very hot. So we went from one extreme to the other, lying on metal beds with no sheets with the shutters open out onto a rickety balcony I was afraid to stand on incase it collapsed. The noise levels in Cuidad Bolivar are mental, car horns tooting all night long and music blasting out of cars, so dont expect a restful nights sleep. We paid around £2 for th eroom so we could hardly complain. In the end it was definitely the best choice, they sorted out out flight into Canaima and the trek to the falls with one two nights sleeping at base camp in Canaima and one on isla raton, facing the falls, deep in the jungle, for around $100.
When we arrived at the airfield we were stunned to see a gleaming white lear jet, we were certain a mistake had been made. I whispered to Debbie, 'dont say anything, just get on' It ahd 12 seats in cream leather, the captain talked us through th eflight then off we went. We felt like movie stars, it was incredible to travel in such luxury into the jungle, I will never forget it, never.
The trip itself down the river on a dug out canoe and sleeping in a hammock all night (long night), showering under the rain as I stood at the edge of the river, trekking to the falls, hearing the roar of the water thundering down from the top of the Tepui, the whole trip was magical and it will stay with me forever.