Deep in the rain forests of Venezuela lies Canaima National Park. This remote region is home to the table mountains, named because they have large peaks which resemble a tabletop. These unique natural structures were formed billions of years ago when South America was part of a large continent with Australia and Africa.
If you want to get away from it all and experience something truly unique, Canaima National Park will not disappoint. Be prepared for effort and expense to get there, but once you do the sights on Mount Roraima and the other table mountains will leave you astounded.
If you have seen the animated movie Up or read the Arthur Conan Doyle book The Lost World, you will already have some idea of what to expect. Dense jungle is broken by sheer cliffs leading up to the tabletops. The world’s highest waterfall also awaits, Angel Falls on Auyantepui. Plus you will witness unique flora and fauna, as well as some amazing wildlife such as the mini black toads.
Mount Roraima is the main destination. You will need to hire a guide to get you there. Believe me, you would get lost if you tried to navigate the dense jungle on your own. The tours last 5 or 6 days with most of the time spent trekking through the jungle. Be prepared for rain too, lots of it. This part of the world gets rain most days. It can be a very tiring trek through thick bush and mud.
After the hard work of getting there, Mount Roraima can be underwhelming at first. Much of the view will be obscured by the trees and clouds. But when you do get glimpses of the mountains (known as tepui), you will marvel at the sight. Many people take a tour first by plane which will take in Angel Falls and the peaks of the tepui. But the real experience comes with the trek and witnessing the landscape up close. This is when you will really appreciate the other-worldly plants and rock formations.
If trekking for 5 or 6 days sounds like too much effort, you can hire a private helicopter. This won’t be cheap but at least you will have more freedom than with the flight tours.