Published: April 6th 2010April 5th 2010
We arrived in Isla Margarita on the 28th following a 2 hour flight from Asuncion, Paraguay to Sau Paulo, Brazil; a 3 hour stopover; a 6 hour flight from Sau Paulo to Caracas, Venezuela; an 8 hour wait in the airport; then a short 50 minute flight from Caracas to Porlamar. We traded some American money for Venezuelan Bolivars with some guy at the airport as we knew that the black market rate (as illegal as it is) was way better than the official exchange rate (6.2-6.4 as opposed to 4.5 official rate). Once we landed in Porlamar, we had to take a cab to our hotel in Playa El Agua as no other mode of transportation was available and ended up costing us Bsf.120.
We stayed at 'Posada Nathalie' which turned out to be a nice hotel. We were able to cook all our own meals as there was a kitchen and we had a private fridge in our room which was nice for keeping food and beer cold. The air conditioning worked well and the swimming pool was actually clean (or at least until a large family moved in on Wednesday for the entire weekend, over-taking the pool
Playa El Agua.
and leaving the water mirky and filthy, soiled with sand, oil, food, a spoon and who knows what else). There were also lots of tables set out outside so we were able to play cards at night and have drinks outside without being stuck in the room. Overall, we were pleased with the place and decided to stay despite the owner increasing the price upon arrival (we had a booking confirmation from 2 months prior). Normally we would have moved but taking into consideration the fact that the hotel was nice and we were approaching Easter weekend (the busiest time of year on the island), we didn't want to take any chances at not being able to find a good, affordable place to stay; I figured it was better to suck up the extra $20 USD ($2.50 per night over 8 days) than cause ourselves unnecessary hassle.
Overall, our stay on the island was alright but to be honest we grew quite bored quite quickly. I really wish Braeden and I were beach compatible as I could lounge all day on a beach chair, working on my tan, sipping cocktails and people watching. Braeden, however, could not. While I
spent time on the beach, he stayed either in the room reading "War and Peace" (not even joking) or using the computer; he did however go in the ocean twice which was more than I can say for myself. We had good beach weather for the most part with the exception of only a couple overcast days. The beaches however were over-crowded with families, groups of teenagers and far too many people working their way up and down trying to sell everything from fruit to fake tattoos. Fortunately, not too many people bothered me except those who saw me reading an English book and claimed to want to practice their English - an annoying gimmick. Oh well, comes with the territory. What should not come with the territory though is the amount of garbage people feel the need to leave behind at the end of the day. I don't understand how people can so willingly turn a potentially nice beach into an unattractive garbage pit - certainly doesn't make for nice sun bathing. What I also don´t understand is how you can find so many people in such a condensed area wearing such ill-fitting and improper swim wear, body mass
to material ratio. It is incredible how many people wear swimsuits that do not fit their bodies in the slightest - bikinis should be a privilege, not a right (especially the thong versions), and banana hammocks should be outlawed completely.
Perhaps our stay on the island would have been better if we didn´t have our return date constantly hanging over us. I´m happy to have ended our trip on the beach getting a tan but can honestly say I´m not ready to go home. We fly back to Caracas in the afternoon of the 5th, have a 16 hour wait in the airport, then fly to Houston and finally Calgary on the 6th.
It´s all over but the crying at this point.
There are more photos below