Maracaibo: Wikis


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Maracaibo skyline at night


Nickname(s): "La Tierra del Sol Amada"
(English: "The Beloved Land of the Sun")
Motto: "Muy noble y leal"
(English: "Very noble and loyal")
Maracaibo Municipality in Zulia State
Maracaibo is located in Venezuela
Location in Venezuela
Coordinates: 10°39′14″N 71°38′26″W / 10.65389°N 71.64056°W / 10.65389; -71.64056
Country Venezuela
State Zulia
Municipality Maracaibo
Founded 1529
 - Mayor Daniel Ponne (interim)
 - Total 1,393 km2 (537.8 sq mi)
Elevation 6 m (20 ft)
Population (2007)
 Density 3,749/km2 (9,709.9/sq mi)
 - Demonym Marabino(a), Maracaibero(a), Maracucho(a)
Time zone VST (UTC-4:30)
 - Summer (DST) not observed (UTC-4:30)
Postal codes 4001, 4002, 4003, 4004, 4005
Area code(s) 0261
Website Alcaldía de Maracaibo (Spanish)
The area and population figures are for the municipality

Maracaibo is the second-largest city in Venezuela after the national capital Caracas and is the capital of Zulia state. The population of the city was 1,571,885[1] in the 2001 Census, the metropolitan area is similar in population with Zulia state at just under 3 million in the Census. An intercensal estimate for 2009 by Instituto Nacional de Estadística lists 1,891,800 for Maracaibo and around 3.7 million for the metropolitan area and Zulia state.[1]

Maracaibo is nicknamed La Tierra del Sol Amada ("The Beloved Land of the Sun").



The city was founded three times. First in 1529 by the German Ambrosio Alfinger, who named it Maracaibo or Villa de Maracaibo. The lack of activity in the zone made Nicolas de Federman evacuate the village in 1535 and move its population to Cabo de la Vela nearby Coro. A second attempt by Captain Alonso Pacheco turned into failure. The third and definite foundation of the city, occurs in 1574 when Captain Pedro Maldonado, under Governor Diego de Mazariego', command establishes the village with the name of Nueva Zamora de Maracaibo to honour Mazariego's place of birth, Zamora in Spain. Since its definite foundation the town began to develop as a whole. It is based on the western side of Lake Maracaibo which is the dominant feature of the oil-rich Maracaibo Basin. Favoured by prevailing winds and a protected harbour, the city is located on the shores of the lake where the narrows, which eventually lead to the Gulf of Venezuela, first become pronounced.

The name Maracaibo comes from the brave Cacique (Indian Chief) Mara a young native who valiantly resisted the Germans and died fighting them. It is said that when Mara fell, the Indians shouted "Mara cayo !!" (Mara fell !!), thus originating the city name. Other historians say that the first name of this land in Indian language was "Maara-iwo" meaning "Place where serpents abound".

For about 390 years, Maracaibo remained isolated and separated from the rest of the country. Transportation was only possible across the lake by ferry or other marine transport.

Cars, buses, and lorries, with their constant flow of manufactured goods and agricultural product, depended on the ferry system between the city and the eastern shore with their roads to connect to the country's motorway system. Maracaibo and the Lake Maracaibo region's economy was more linked to Colombia than to eastern Venezuela due to the natural route available through Lake Maracaibo then leading to the sea.

This isolation was both a challenge and an advantage. The very nature of the city's location made for a population known for their independent thought and character. The history of this region is plagued with stories about the creation of an independent and sovereign nation apart from Venezuela, a nation called La República Independiente del Zulia, which means The Independent Republic of Zulia, but this has never come to be.

The dictatorial regime of General Marcos Pérez Jiménez in the 1950s set as a goal the construction of a bridge connecting the two lake shores. Various bridge projects for the spanning of the Lake Maracaibo narrows near the city were in the works. The general's government had decided that this "city of independent thought" should be more "connected" to the rest of the country.

Proposals for a bridge design that included rail transport and tourist facilities were seriously considered. The fall of the Pérez Jiménez government on January 23, 1958, quickly led to a less elaborate design project that was approved and funded by a democratic and more conservative government.

The building of "El Puente Sobre El Lago de Maracaibo "General Rafael Urdaneta"—(General Rafael Urdaneta Bridge over Lake Maracaibo) named after the distinguished General hero of the War of Independence was opened to public traffic in 1962. The project was completed on schedule in 40 months.

This bridge construction project was a remarkable feat. Built under very difficult conditions, when completed, it became the longest prestressed concrete bridge in the world. The structure is in constant use and remains today as the most important link between Maracaibo, along with much of the state of Zulia, and the rest of Venezuela.

Maracaibo was elevated to the status of Roman Catholic Archdiocese on 30 April 1966 with the creation of the Archdiocese of Maracaibo[2]. Since November 2000, its Archbishop has been Ubaldo Ramón Santana Sequera.

Henry Morgan's Attack

In March of 1669, Henry Morgan sacked Maracaibo, which had emptied out when his fleet was first spied, and moved on to the Spanish settlement of Gibraltar on the inside of Lake Maracaibo in search of more treasure. A few weeks later, when he attempted to sail out of the lake, Morgan found an occupied fort blocking the inlet to the Caribbean, along with three Spanish ships. These were the Magdalena, the San Luis, and the Soledad. He destroyed the Magdalena and burned the San Luis by sending a dummy ship full of gunpowder to explode near them, after which the crew of the Soledad surrendered. By faking a landward attack on the fort, thereby convincing the Spanish governor to shift his cannon, he eluded their guns and escaped.{{<Harry Morgans Way (AlisonPress 1977) author; Dudley Pope>}}<Caribbean;author;James A.Michener, Guild Publishing ,1989>


François de Pons, an agent to the French government in Caracas, provides some historical insight into the people of Maracaibo in his travel journal (de Pons 1806). The following excerpts describe the local population of Maracaibo:

They perform coasting, or long voyages, with equal facility; and when all trade is suspended by the operations of war, they enter privateers. Bred up in the neighbourhood of the lake, they are mostly all expert swimmers and excellent divers. Their reputation stands equally high as soldiers. Those who do not enter into the sea service, form plantations, or assist in cultivating those, which belong to their fathers. Nothing proves better their aptitude for this kind of occupation, than the immense flocks of cattle with which the savannas of Maracaybo [sic] are covered.

He also notes the appreciation of literature, the arts, education, and culture among the people of Maracaibo:

But what confers the greatest honour on the inhabitants of Maracaibo, is their application to literature; in which, notwithstanding the wretched state of public education, they make considerable progress....They likewise acquired the art of elocution, and of writing their mother tongue with the greatest purity; in a word, they possessed all the qualities which characterise men of letters.

During the period of de Pons' visit, however, he believed the men of Maracaibo to lack integrity with regard to honouring their commitments:

After allowing that the inhabitants of this city possess activity, genius, and courage, we have nothing further to say in their praise. They are accused of violating their promises, and even of attempting to break through written engagements. Their character, in this respect, is so notorious, that every stranger whom business induces to visit Maracaybo, affirms, that it would be much better to enter into commercial speculations with the women, because they appear themselves to possess that sincerity and good sense which are every where else considered as belonging particularly to men.

Modern times

Maracaibo has become a large metropolitan city, comprising two municipalities: to the north the municipality of Maracaibo and to the south the San Francisco municipality (established in 1995). In recent years, due to political/economic and cultural reasons, many have moved to Maracaibo from rural areas and other cities (including Caracas).

In the political arena, the citizens of Maracaibo (and most other cities and municipalities in Zulia state) have in recent years voted for a competitive political system in where the governor is from a certain political party and the mayor or mayors are from the opposite political party. This system has brought many good things to the city and the state; for example, if the governor builds a bridge, one of the mayors will build two, if a mayor cleans a public park, the governor retaliates by cleaning and remodelling another one.

Maracaibo also boasts one of the best universities in the country, the state university. La Universidad del Zulia (LUZ) is well renowned for its excellent law and medical schools. Other major universities and schools include Universidad Rafael Belloso Chacin (URBE), with its excellent engineering school, and Universidad Rafael Urdaneta, with one of the country's leading psychology schools.

Culture in Maracaibo is very indigenous and autochthonous, is recognized in every state and city in Venezuela, and is very influential with its gaitas, desserts, style, living, and customs. Most major houses of advertising in Venezuela acknowledge how opposite the culture of Maracaibo is from that of Caracas. Studies of both prove, for example, that Caracas' leading soft drink brand is Coke, while in Maracaibo it is Pepsi. This has made many brands create special localised advertising of their products (including several Pepsi commercials spoken by local celebrities).

The Maracuchos (and most of the inhabitants of Zulia state) are known to be the only users, in Venezuela, of the Castilian dialect, using words such as "vos" when referring to the second person singular, as is done in Argentina, Uruguay, and much of Central America; in the rest of the country the word "tu" or "usted" is used. This has led Maracuchos to be recognized almost anywhere by their rough accent.

Maracuchos are extremely proud of their city, their culture, and all of Zulia. They usually claim that Venezuela wouldn't be the country it actually is without Zulia. Rivalry with inhabitants of other regions is common, specially with Gochos (people of the Mérida and Táchira state) and Caraqueños (people of the city of Caracas).

Unfortunately, the city of Maracaibo has no facilities to treat domestic sewage.[3] All sewage is pumped into Lake Maracaibo which, along with the removal of the land bridge to the sea, has been responsible for transforming the lake from crystal clear waters teeming with fish to a brackish green mess.

Law and government

Maracaibo has one municipality: Maracaibo Municipality, Venezuelan law specifies that municipal governments have four main functions: executive, legislative, comptroller, and planning. The executive function is managed by the mayor, who is in charge of representing the municipality's administration. The legislative branch is represented by the Municipal Council, composed of seven councillors, charged with the deliberation of new decrees and local laws. The comptroller tasks are managed by the municipal comptroller's office, which oversees accountancy. Finally, planning is represented by the Local Public Planning Council, which manages development projects for the municipality. According to United Nations reports, Maracaibo like Caracas has significant infrastructure deficiencies under current government, including shortfalls in clean drinking water.[4]


The city of Maracaibo is located at the denominated Maracaibo plain. It has low fertility, typical of a dry-tropical forest. It presents a great number of rivers, sewers and gorges. The city dominates the entrance to Lake Maracaibo.


Maracaibo is one of the cities of Venezuela where the highest temperatures are registered, it has a severe warm climate, only attenuated by the moderating influence of the lake, its average historical temperature is 29 °C. In the past the climate of the city, as well in all the coast of the Lake Maracaibo, was unhealthy, due to the combination of high temperatures with high humidity, being a zone of importance. At the present time, the effects of urban development, and control of plagues, has almost eradicated that. The registered high temperature of the city is 41.0 °C, and the low 18.0 °C.

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Avg high °F 89 89 90 90 89 91 91 92 90 88 89 89 90
Avg low °F 74 75 77 78 78 78 78 79 78 76 76 75 77
Avg high °C 31 31 32 32 31 32 32 33 32 31 31 31 32
Avg low °C 23 23 25 25 25 25 25 26 25 24 24 23 25
Source: Weatherbase

Colleges and universities

Several universities are based in the city:


Bella Vista
Sambil Mall, North Maracaibo
  • The Maracaibo Metro, also known as Metro del Sol Amado (due to the city nickname), is a subway system currently under construction, it encompasses the suburbs of Maracaibo with the city's downtown. Currently, six metro stations are open and running.
  • Buses are the main means of mass transportation, this system runs a variety of bus types, operated by several companies on normal streets and avenues:
  • bus; large buses.
  • buseta; medium size buses.
  • microbus or colectivo; vans or minivans.
  • por puesto; cars.
  • La Chinita International Airport, was opened on November 16, 1969, during the government of president Rafael Caldera to open a gate to the western part of the country and alleviate congestion from the Simon Bolivar Airport near Caracas, which manages about 90% of the international flights in Venezuela. In fact, the only international destinations from Maracaibo are Aruba, Bogotá, Barranquilla, Cartagena, Curaçao, Miami and Panama City.
  • General Rafael Urdaneta Bridge, inaugurated in 1962, is located at the outlet Lake Maracaibo, in western Venezuela. The bridge connects Maracaibo with much of the rest of the country. It is named after General Rafael Urdaneta, a Venezuelan hero in the War of Independence.

Made of concrete, it spans 8.7 kilometres (5.4 miles). The bridge is a cable-stayed bridge that carries only vehicles. The competition to design the bridge started in 1957 and was won by Riccardo Morandi, an Italian. Construction was done by several companies. They included: Grün & Bilfinger, Julius Berger, Bauboag AG, Philipp Holzmann AG, Precomprimido C.A., Wayss & Freytag and K Ingeniería.


Due to the regionalistic nature of Marabinos, they strongly support their native teams. Maracaibo, and the rest of Zulia, are represented in baseball by the Águilas del Zulia, a Venezuelan winter league team that plays in the Liga Venezolana de Béisbol Profesional,and which is based in the Estadio Luis Aparicio El Grande. Regional teams include the Unión Atlético Maracaibo and the Zulia FC in football, and the Gaiteros del Zulia in basketball, a team that participates in the Liga Profesional de Baloncesto de Venezuela, whose home is the 5.000-people Pedro Elías Belisario Aponte stadium.

Their city has one football stadium:

In the 2000 Little League World Series, the Sierra Maestra Little League of Maracaibo, Venezuela defeated Bellaire Little League of Bellaire, Texas in the championship game of the 54th Little League World Series.

Sports teams


Carabobo street contains much of the city's famous colonial architecture

An interesting aspect of the city, is the humor and the musical culture of its people, the Gaita Zuliana, is a traditional christmas music from the region. It is known that Maracaibo was culturally separated from the rest of Venezuela, for geographical and historical reasons. The Lake Maracaibo maintained separated the city, with its neighboring states and Caracas, capital of Venezuela. The people from Maracaibo, having been influenced by Andalusian colonists, apply the term "vos" instead of usted (English: "you"); making it one of the few places in the Americas to use the Castilian dialect. The "vos" term, the fast speaking and the strong tone of the voice, produced a particular style, that nowadays is a “mark of origin” of the people from Maracaibo.

The city is also home to an array of immigrants from but not limited to: Spain, Italy, Germany, and Latin American countries. The General Rafael Urdaneta Bridge, the freeway Machiques — Colón, and the ship transportation, unites the communications of the city, with the rest of Venezuela, this united with the oil boom, cultivated since 1914, is going to conform a new Maracaibo.

Our Lady of Rosario of Chiquinquirá

Is one of the many popular representations of the Virgin Mary in Venezuela. The image is most venerated in Maracaibo. The story of discovery of the virgin dates from the XVIII century. An old lady would make a living by washing other people's clothes, a job she did every morning at the shores of the lake. On 18 November 1709, she had taken a bulk of clothes, and as usual, headed to the lake to start washing them. This old lady was at her chores when she saw a wooden board floating towards her. She picked it up thinking that it might be of some use. When she finished her work, she went home carrying the clothes, the board and a small vase with fresh water. She then placed the board on top of the vase. Then, she noticed a small figure in the board but could not tell what it was like.

She fell asleep, and when she awoke up it was already late and dark. She decided to go to a local grocery store to buy some candles. On her way back a small gathering of people had formed outside her house, and after coming closer she noted that her home was filled with light. After entering she and some of the neighbours witnessed the small wooden board floating in the air surrounded by light with a bright crisp image of the Virgin Mary. At this, everyone was amazed and called the event a miracle.

Since that day the street where she lived was renamed "El Milagro" which means ¨Miracle¨ in Spanish, and to this day it is one of the most important streets in the neighbourhood of "El Saladillo" in the city of Maracaibo.

Gaita Zuliana

The Gaita is the name of an Afro Venezuelan folk music from Maracaibo, it is normally considered a christmas-time music. According to Joan Corominas, it popularised in the middle 60's of the XX century in all the country, and it fused with other types of music like salsa and merengue in the 70's. There are many famous Gaita groups like: Maracaibo 15, Gran Coquivacoa, Barrio Obrero, Cardenales del Éxito, Guaco (when Guaco started was a gaita group, now is a Tropical music band), Koquimba, Melody Gaita, Estrellas del Zulia, Saladillo, and many others.

Notable natives


Maracaibo Districts
Venancio Pulgar • Idelfonso Vázquez • Coquivacoa • Barrio 18 de Octubre • Juana de Ávila • El Naranjal • San Jacinto (La Marina) • Mara Norte • La Trinidad • Las Tarabas • La Estrella • Maracaibo I • Maracaibo II • Lago Mar Beach • Antonio Borjas Romero • San Isidro • Francisco Eugenio Bustamante • San Rafael • Ziruma • San Miguel • Luis Hurtado Higuera • Manuel Dagnino • Cristo de Aranza • Cecilio Acosta • Cacique Mara • El Amparo • Raúl Leoni • Caracciolo Parra Pérez • Los Olivos • Chiquinquirá • Santa Lucía • Santa Rosa • Bolívar • Bella Vista • Historic zone of Maracaibo • El Saladillo • Isla Dorada

Sister cities

Maracaibo has four sister city:[6]


Panoramic view of Maracaibo from the lake

External links

Coordinates: 10°39′14″N 71°38′26″W / 10.654°N 71.6406°W / 10.654; -71.6406

Line note references

  1. ^ a b
  2. ^ Maracaibo (Archdiocese) [Catholic-Hierarchy]
  3. ^ Appropriate Technology for Sewage Pollution Control in the Wider Caribbean Region, Caribbean Environment Programme Technical Report #40 1998
  4. ^ United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). New York, NY. "Safe Drinking Water." Excerpt from "Progress since the World Summit for Children: A Statistical Review." September 2001.
  5. ^ [1]
  6. ^ Sister Cities designated by Sister Cities International, Inc. (SCI). Retrieved June 8, 2006.

Cada Lugar en Maracaibo.


de Pons, François (1806), A Voyage to the Eastern Part of Terra Firma, or the Spanish Main, in South-America, during the years 1801, 1802, 1803, and 1804, New York: I. Riley and Company 

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

5 de julio Financial Area.
5 de julio Financial Area.

Maracaibo is the capital of Zulia state in western Venezuela, and is the second largest city in the country after Caracas. It has more than 2 million people and it's famous for its typical music, big shopping malls and beautiful parks. It is called "La Primera Ciudad de Venezuela" (The Most Important Venezuelan City) because of its development.

  • Aeropostal, Aserca, Venezolana, Avior and Conviasa have frequent flights connecting Caracas and other venezuelan cities with Maracaibo's La Chinita International Airport.
  • American Airlines flies daily to and from Miami (about 3 hours).
  • Copa Airlines flies daily to Panama City with connections to other cities in Latin America and the US.
  • Venezolana also flies daily to and from Panama City and to Aruba
  • Aires flies daily to and from Bogota, and twice a week to and from Cartagena and Barranquilla to Maracaibo
  • Insel Air flies to and from Curacao
  • SBA Airlines also used to fly daily to and from Miami and Aruba
  • Avior Airlines also flies to and from Curacao

By Bus

Maracaibo is your arrival point in Venezuela if you take the most direct route from Santa Marta in Colombia.

Night buses go to/from Caracas, San Cristobal and Mérida, all for about Bs.30 - 35,000. The cheap bus to Merida is only Bs.18,000, but is much less comfortable.

  • Taxi: Taxi service is generally cheaper in Maracaibo than in other cities in Venezuela including Caracas due to high offer and lower demand. Always use a taxi from a taxi service, either by requesting it directly through the phone or walking to a taxi service spot. Never Take a taxi off the street, no matter how 'legit' it might look. Anyone can put a taxi sign on their car (the plastic dome is attached by a couple of elastic strings). Most businesses in Maracaibo will aid a tourist searching for a Taxi so don't be afraid to ask in a McDonalds or another shop for help locating one. Hotels have their own taxi services.
  • Subway: It's the most modern and secure way to get around in the city. It is a new system so it has only 6 stations that connect the southwest to the center. Libertado station is just 200m north of the bus terminal (but be careful if you walk) Just 0.70 Bs.F
  • Bus: Be warned that mugging is very common in bus routes, general advice is, if you can afford a Taxi, take a Taxi. If you cannot, use common sense, do not wear watches, chains or anything that might incite muggers.
  • Walking: Maracaibo has a good layout and good sidewalks, caution should be taken if walking during the day because of the extreme heat and solar radiation. Extreme caution should be taken if walking during the night, it's advised to take other forms of transportation if possible.


Maracaibo has a a nice but sterile centre, that they try to posh up with old european styled parks - not very successful.

  • The bridge over Lake Maracaibo [1]. Built in 1957 over Lake Maracaibo, is recognized as one of the most impressive buildings in Venezuela. It's also the largest concrete bridge in the world.
  • Basilica de Nuestra Señora de Chiquinquira. In downtown Maracaibo dedicated to the apparition of the Virgin Mary to a native venezuelan in colonial era.
  • Palafitos in Santa Rosa de Agua[2]. To the north of Maracaibo, these buildings are created by native venezuelans on top of the water with wood.
  • Saladillo. The most beautiful colonial area in the city with an European style and narrow streets.
  • Try the local cuisine, places like:
    • Chop's: In Ave 10 with 65St, with their famous tequeños and patacones.
    • El Budare de Juana. Located in Santa Rita avenue. Near Hotel Kristoff. Open 24/7.
    • Arepas Santa Rita: In Santa Rita avenue, sells arepas with an american style[3].
    • Arepas San Benito: In Santa Rita, known for their famous 'aguita de sapo' (frog water, this is how it´s called the juices that come out when the "pernil" is roasted, "pernil"= Roasted pork shoulder) arepas.
    • Cachapas Frank: In 72 Ave with Delicias, famous for their cachapas.
    • Los Dulces de Alicia In Doral Center Mall, local deserts such as limonson, dulce de leche and on.
  • Jog in the late afternoon/night at Vereda del Lago, a big urban park along the lake border, located in El Milagro Ave. One of the meeting places for the population.
  • Get in Tranvia, a touristic transport sistem that takes you around the downtown and tells you the city history. There's also a night trip with several stops in the most famous night clubs. For around 50 Bs.F per person. Main station is at Vereda del Lago urban park.
  • Changing money. As of September 2009, the parallel market rate for the Bolivar was 6.3 whearas the official rate remained 2.15. In Maracaibo, you can change money at the bus station for 5.8 (ask around) and at the Casino next to Hotel del Lago for 6.2.  edit
  • Vereda del Lago / Aquamania. A park next to the lake with good security. It contains a waterpark called Aquamania, which is a good way to cool off in this extremely hot city.  edit
  • Sambil Maracaibo. In the Ave Goajira. With A/C, security and parking. Has several national banks that operate off-hours. A food court including (but not limited to): McDonalds, Church's Chicken, Marhaba Express, Burger King, Subway, Cinnabon, Mr Pretzel and a TGI Friday's. The biggest movie theater in Venezuela with 13 projection rooms. And clothing stores including: Zara and Lacoste.
  • Lago Mall. Located in the Milagro Avenue, next to the Hotel del Lago. A/C, Parking and security. Has several banks, jewelery stores and a food court including (but not limited to): McDonalds, Wendy's, Panda Express and CHOPS. Also has a movie theater with 4 projection rooms.
  • Doral Center Mall. Located in Ave Fuerzas Armadas, has A/C, security and paid parking, with a 6 room-movie theater and food court.
  • Galerias Mall. Located in la Limpia, has A/C, paid parking and some security.Has an 11 room-movie theater, an ice skating ring and a small food court. Caution should be taken when visiting this mall since it's located next to a 'Red zone'.
  • Centro Comercial Costa Verde. Old shopping center, has no A/C and no working movie theater. There is a bingo in the lower level and a Church's Chicken, Subway and Burger King in the top floors. You can also find some famouse stores as Oscar De La Renta and a super market.
  • Mall Delicias Plaza. Has A/C, parking lot and security. It is a luxurious shopping mall located in the commercial Delicias Norte avenue. Latin American designers have stores here.
  • Babilon Centro Sur, C2 Avenue. Has A/C, parking and security. Its principal attraction is the movie theater consider the best one in the city and the Colombian department store EXITO.
  • Hooters, Next to the square's boulevard. +58 0261 7929166. A nice option for american food and souvenir.
  • Ciao, Dr. Portillo avenue. Italian cuisine in a cosmopolitan way.
  • Mi Vaquita, 5th of July St. The best steak house in Maracaibo, very popular.
  • Angus Grill., Av.13 con calle 69-A. A great steak house with great cuts and side dishes.
  • Mi Ternerita. Also a steak house located in the Aventura Mall, and now has a new location at Fuerzas Armadas avenue.
  • Da Vinci, 11-Ath Avenue near 5th of July St. Italian.
  • Salon Canton, 9th Avenue with 71st. Cantonese and Oriental cuisine.
  • Te con Te, Bella Vista Avenue and C2 Avenue. Salads and Crepes.
  • Zaga. El milagro Avenue in Lago Mall. Sushi and oriental food restaurant with a spacious bar.
  • Mi Vaquita. Mi Vaquita is a club on weekends during night. Have to get there early if you want a good table.
  • Mi Ternerita. The best club in Maracaibo, some say Venezuela. Excellent music, drinks, and ambience. A must go.
  • Zeta bar. Located in Bella Vista behind the Governor's Mansion. Shares the block with other bars.
  • H2O. Located next to Zeta Bar in Bella Vista.
  • Crobar. Located at the end of Bella Vista. It's the biggest night club in the city with four different areas.
  • El Girasol. Located in the hotel El Paseo, El Milagro. A fantastic spinning restaurant that celebrates its 24 years.
  • SOLO, Casco Central Calle 94 #5-82 (, detras del Teatro Baralt), [4]. 7pm-3am. Lugar nocturno multifacético electroestático rockero - electrónico- new ravero - punk- indie-progressive-funk - house- nu jazz - minimal - maximal - electro - tech - drum and bass and more good music bien sur ! $.  edit
  • Hotel Union. 84a calle 4 - 60. Bs.25,000. ($11) per doble per night.
  • Maracaibo Suites. Tel: 0261 783-4533. Approx Bs.80,000 ($35) a night a room. Very good service.
  • Gran Hotel Delicias. Tel: 0261 797-6111. Double BsF.260,000 ($120) a room.
  • Hotel Aeropuerto. Tel: 0261 787-5881. Fairly good mid-range option with a pool, restaurant, rooms have a/c. Not very close to the airport or to downtown Maracaibo, but just 300m east of El Varillal metro station. 215 Bolivares / night including breakfast.
  • Maracaibo Cumberland [5]. Tel: 0261 722-2224, Calle 86-A, between Av Santa Rita and Bella Vista. Another costly option.
  • Crowne Plaza Hotel. Tel: 0261 730-2700. Av Circunvalacion 2, Zona Industrial. Luxurious 5-star business hotel located in the industrial area near the airport.
  • Venetur Hotel Del Lago. Tel: 0261 792-4422. Avenida 2, El Milagro. An aging 5-star hotel, in a much more central and comercial point.
  • Kristoff [6]. Tel: 0261 796-1000. Av 8, (Santa Rita) and Calle 69, Maracaibo. Quite costly.
  • Free WiFi
    • 13 Subway restaurants around the city.
    • Sambil Mall in Guajira Avenue
    • La Chinita International Airport in Manuel Belloso Highway.

Get out

The bus station is 200m south of Libertador metro station (don't walk at night). There are air conditioned buses to most cities in Venezuela. To Colombia From the bus terminal, there are old american cars called "por puestos" that will take you to the bus station in Maicao, Colombia (3 hours, from there you can take a bus to anywhere in Colombia). The fare in September 2009 was 60 Bolivares per person. They leave when they fill up. If you want one with air conditioning (recommended), don't mention this but just wait for one that looks a bit newer (otherwise they will want to charge you extra for it and they can be quite aggressive). On the way to the border you will pass through about 10 military / police checkpionts where you have to show your passport. If there are any illegal immigrants in your car, they will have to negotiate a bribe with each of these guards (normally 2-10$ at each checkpoint) and this will add about an hour to the journey. Amerlujo and Expresos Brasilia have direct buses to Colombia but they cost about twice as much as going via Maicao and they leave very early in the morning. Expect to take about 12 hours in total to get from Maracaibo to Cartagena.

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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

There is more than one meaning of Maracaibo discussed in the 1911 Encyclopedia. We are planning to let all links go to the correct meaning directly, but for now you will have to search it out from the list below by yourself. If you want to change the link that led you here yourself, it would be appreciated.


Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary


Wikipedia has an article on:


Proper noun




  1. A city in the northwest of Venezuela.

Derived terms

  • Maracaibo tody-flycatcher

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