Caracas

Caracas

Overview
Caracas officially Santiago de León de Caracas, is the capital and largest city of Venezuela
Venezuela
Venezuela , officially called the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela , is a tropical country on the northern coast of South America. It borders Colombia to the west, Guyana to the east, and Brazil to the south...

; natives or residents are known as Caraquenians
Adjectivals and demonyms for cities
The following is a list of adjectival forms of cities in English and their demonymic equivalents, which denote the people or the inhabitants of these cities....

 in English . It is located in the northern part of the country, following the contours of the narrow Caracas Valley on the Venezuelan coastal mountain range (Cordillera de la Costa). Terrain suitable for building lies between 760 and 910 m (2,493.4 and 2,985.6 ) above sea level
Above mean sea level
The term above mean sea level refers to the elevation or altitude of any object, relative to the average sea level datum. AMSL is used extensively in radio by engineers to determine the coverage area a station will be able to reach...

.
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Encyclopedia
Caracas officially Santiago de León de Caracas, is the capital and largest city of Venezuela
Venezuela
Venezuela , officially called the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela , is a tropical country on the northern coast of South America. It borders Colombia to the west, Guyana to the east, and Brazil to the south...

; natives or residents are known as Caraquenians
Adjectivals and demonyms for cities
The following is a list of adjectival forms of cities in English and their demonymic equivalents, which denote the people or the inhabitants of these cities....

 in English . It is located in the northern part of the country, following the contours of the narrow Caracas Valley on the Venezuelan coastal mountain range (Cordillera de la Costa). Terrain suitable for building lies between 760 and 910 m (2,493.4 and 2,985.6 ) above sea level
Above mean sea level
The term above mean sea level refers to the elevation or altitude of any object, relative to the average sea level datum. AMSL is used extensively in radio by engineers to determine the coverage area a station will be able to reach...

. The valley is close to the Caribbean Sea
Caribbean Sea
The Caribbean Sea is a sea of the Atlantic Ocean located in the tropics of the Western hemisphere. It is bounded by Mexico and Central America to the west and southwest, to the north by the Greater Antilles, and to the east by the Lesser Antilles....

, separated from the coast by a steep 2200 m (7400 ft) high mountain range
Mountain range
A mountain range is a single, large mass consisting of a succession of mountains or narrowly spaced mountain ridges, with or without peaks, closely related in position, direction, formation, and age; a component part of a mountain system or of a mountain chain...

, Cerro Ávila
Cerro El Ávila
The El Ávila National Park covers part of the mountainous region of the coastal area of north-central Venezuela. The area's highest elevation is Pico Naiguatá, at 2.765 meters above sea level...

; to the south there are more hills and mountains.

El Distrito Metropolitano de Caracas (Metropolitan District of Caracas) includes the Distrito Capital
Venezuelan Capital District
The Capital District of Venezuela is a federal district corresponding to the capital Caracas. It has an area of 433 km² and there is only one administrative division , Libertador, which contains about half City of Caracas. It is the seat of the federal government and the head of the public...

 (the capital city proper) and four other municipalities in Miranda State including Chacao, Baruta
Baruta Municipality
Baruta Municipality belongs politically to the Greater Caracas Municipality in Venezuela. It is located geographically in the South-East section of the city. Its western limit is the Los Chaguaramos neighborhood and limits to the east with the Colinas de Los Ruices neighborhood, in the Sucre...

, Sucre
Sucre Municipality, Miranda
The Sucre Municipality is one of the 21 municipalities that makes up the Venezuelan state of Miranda and, according to a 2007 population estimate by the National Institute of Statistics of Venezuela, the municipality has a population of 640,762. The city of Petare is the shire town of the Sucre...

, and El Hatillo
El Hatillo Municipality, Miranda
El Hatillo Municipality is an administrative division of the State of Miranda, Venezuela; along with Baruta, Chacao, Libertador and Sucre, it is one of the five municipalities of Caracas, the capital of Venezuela...

. The Distrito Capital had a population of 2,097,350 as of 2009, while that of Distrito Metropolitano was estimated at 4,196,514 as of (2008).

History



At the time of its founding, more than four hundred years ago, the valley of Caracas was populated by indigenous peoples. Francisco Fajardo, the son of a Spanish
Spanish people
The Spanish are citizens of the Kingdom of Spain. Within Spain, there are also a number of vigorous nationalisms and regionalisms, reflecting the country's complex history....

 captain and a Guaiqueri cacica
Cacique
Cacique is a title derived from the Taíno word for the pre-Columbian chiefs or leaders of tribes in the Bahamas, Greater Antilles, and the northern Lesser Antilles...

, attempted to establish a plantation in the valley in 1562 after founding a series of coastal towns. Fajardo's settlement did not last long. It was destroyed by natives of the region led by Terepaima and Guaicaipuro
Guaicaipuro
Guaicaipuro was a native Venezuelan chief of both the Teques and Caracas tribes. Though known today as Guaicaipuro, in documents of the time his name was written Guacaipuro.-Life:...

. This was the last rebellion on the part of the natives. On 25 July 1567, Captain Diego de Losada
Diego de Losada
Diego de Losada was a Spanish conquistador and the founder of Santiago de León de Caracas, the current capital of Venezuela.Losada was born in Rionegro del Puente, in what is now the province of Zamora. He reached Puerto Rico in 1533....

 laid the foundations of the city of Santiago de León de Caracas.

During the 17th century, the coast of Venezuela was frequently raided by pirates. With the coastal mountains as a barrier, Caracas was relatively immune to such attacks – one of the reasons it became the principal city of the region. However, in the 1680s, buccaneers crossed the mountains through a little-used pass while the town's defenders were guarding the more often-used one, and, encountering little resistance, sacked and set fire to the town.

The cultivation of cocoa under the Compañía Guipuzcoana de Caracas stimulated the development of the city, which in 1777 became the capital of the Captaincy General of Venezuela
Captaincy General of Venezuela
The Captaincy General of Venezuela was an administrative district of colonial Spain, created in 1777 to provide more autonomy for the provinces of Venezuela, previously under the jurisdiction of the Viceroyalty of New Granada and the Audiencia of Santo Domingo...

.

An attempt at revolution to gain independence organized by José María España and Manuel Gual was put down on 13 July 1797. But the ideas of the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

 and the American Wars of Independence inspired the people, and on 5 July 1811, a Declaration of Independence
Declaration of independence
A declaration of independence is an assertion of the independence of an aspiring state or states. Such places are usually declared from part or all of the territory of another nation or failed nation, or are breakaway territories from within the larger state...

 was signed in Caracas. This city was also the birthplace of two of Latin America's most important figures of the Venezuelan War of Independence
Venezuelan War of Independence
-The First Republic:Criollos resented the mercantilist policies of Spain. Trade was only allowed in Pacific ports which was a terrible burden for Argentina, Paraguay and the Caribbean colonies. This is significant as Cuba and Puerto Rico were forced to allow free trade in 1763 by Britain and...

: Francisco de Miranda
Francisco de Miranda
Sebastián Francisco de Miranda Ravelo y Rodríguez de Espinoza , commonly known as Francisco de Miranda , was a Venezuelan revolutionary...

 and "El Libertador
Libertadores
Libertadores refers to the principal leaders of the Latin American wars of independence from Spain. They are named that way in contrast with the Conquistadors, who were so far the only Spanish peoples recorded in the South American history...

" Simón Bolívar
Simón Bolívar
Simón José Antonio de la Santísima Trinidad Bolívar y Palacios Ponte y Yeiter, commonly known as Simón Bolívar was a Venezuelan military and political leader...

. An earthquake destroyed Caracas
1812 Caracas earthquake
The 1812 Caracas earthquake took place in Venezuela on March 26, 1812 at 4:37 p.m. It measured 7.7 on the Richter magnitude scale. It caused extensive damage in Caracas, La Guaira, Barquisimeto, San Felipe, and Mérida...

 on 26 March 1812, which was portrayed by authorities as a divine punishment for the rebellion against the Spanish Crown. The war continued until 24 June 1821, when Bolívar gained a decisive victory over the royalists at the Battle of Carabobo
Battle of Carabobo
The Battle of Carabobo, 24 June 1821, was fought between independence fighters, led by Simón Bolívar, and the Royalist forces, led by Spanish Field Marshal Miguel de la Torre. Bolívar's decisive victory at Carabobo led to the independence of Venezuela....

.

As the economy of oil-rich Venezuela grew steadily during the first part of the 20th century, Caracas became one of Latin America's economic centers, and is also known as the preferred travel hub between Europe and South America. During the 1950s, Caracas began an intensive modernization program which continued throughout the 1960s and early 1970s. The Universidad Central de Venezuela, designed by modernist architect Carlos Raúl Villanueva
Carlos Raúl Villanueva
Carlos Raúl Villanueva was the most prominent Venezuelan architect of the 20th century and one of the great Modernists. He played a major role in the development and modernization of Caracas, Maracay and other cities across the country...

 and now a UNESCO
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

 monument, was built. New working- and middle-class residential districts sprouted in the valley, extending the urban area towards the east and southeast. Joining El Silencio, also designed by Villanueva, were several workers' housing districts, 23 de Enero and Simon Rodriguez. Middle class developments include Bello Monte, Los Palos Grandes, Chuao, and El Cafetal. On 17 October 2004, one of the Parque Central
Parque Central Complex
The Parque Central Complex is a housing, commercial and cultural development, implemented by Centro Simón Bolívar and located in the urbanization of the county in the center of the city of Caracas, Venezuela adjacent to Paseo Vargas....

 towers caught fire. The dramatic change in the economic structure of the country, which went from being primarily agricultural to dependent on oil production, stimulated the fast development of Caracas, and made it a magnet for people in rural communities who migrated to the capital city in an unplanned fashion searching for greater economic opportunity. This migration created the rancho (slum) belt of the valley of Caracas

Symbols





The flag of Caracas consists of a burgundy red field with the version of the Coat of Arms
Coat of arms
A coat of arms is a unique heraldic design on a shield or escutcheon or on a surcoat or tabard used to cover and protect armour and to identify the wearer. Thus the term is often stated as "coat-armour", because it was anciently displayed on the front of a coat of cloth...

 of the City (effective since the 1980s). The red field symbolises the blood spilt by Caraquenian people in favour of independence and the highest ideals of the Venezuelan Nation. Later, in the year 1994, presumably as a result of the change of municipal authorities, it was decided to increase the size of the Caracas coat of arms and move it to the centre of the field. This version of the flag is still in use today.

The coat of arms of the City of Caracas was adopted by the Libertador Municipality
Libertador Municipality
Libertador Municipality may refer to the following places in the Venezuela:*Libertador Bolivarian Municipality, in the Venezuelan Capital District*Libertador Municipality, Aragua*Libertador Municipality, Carabobo*Libertador Municipality, Mérida...

 to identify itself. Later, the Metropolitan Mayor Office assumed the lion, the scallop and Saint James' Cross for the same purpose.

The anthem of the city is the Marcha a Caracas, written by the composer Tiero Pezzuti de Matteis with the lyrics by José Enrique Sarabia
José Enrique Sarabia
José Enrique “Chelique” Sarabia, is a Venezuelan poet, musician, publicist, and television producer....

. The lyrics are said to be inspired by the heroism of the Caraquenian people, and the memory of the City of Red Roofs. Incidentally, the National Anthem
National anthem
A national anthem is a generally patriotic musical composition that evokes and eulogizes the history, traditions and struggles of its people, recognized either by a nation's government as the official national song, or by convention through use by the people.- History :Anthems rose to prominence...

 of Venezuela, Gloria al Bravo Pueblo
Gloria al Bravo Pueblo
Gloria al Bravo Pueblo was adopted as Venezuela's diverse national anthem by President Antonio Guzmán Blanco on May 25, 1885. The lyrics were written by the physician and journalist Vicente Salias in 1810. The music was later composed by musician Juan José Landaeta...

, includes the lines "...y si el despotismo levanta la voz, seguid el ejemplo que Caracas dio" ("...and if despotism raises its voice, follow the example that Caracas gave"), reflecting the fact that, in addition to generously providing many heroic fighters to the War of Independence, the junta established in Caracas (19 April 1810) served as inspiration for other regions to do the same—as did its declaration of independence
Venezuelan Declaration of Independence
The Venezuelan Declaration of Independence is a statement adopted by a congress of Venezuelan provinces on July 5, 1811 through which Venezuelans made the decision to break away from the Spanish Crown in order to establish a new nation based on the premises of equality of individuals, abolition of...

 a year later.

Local government


Caracas has five municipalities: Baruta, El Hatillo, Chacao, Libertador and Sucre. The constitution of Venezuela
Constitution of Venezuela
||The Constitution of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela is the current and twenty-sixth constitution of Venezuela. It was drafted in mid-1999 by a constitutional assembly that had been created by popular referendum. Adopted in December 1999, it replaced the 1961 Constitution - the longest...

 specifies that municipal governments be divided into executive
Executive (government)
Executive branch of Government is the part of government that has sole authority and responsibility for the daily administration of the state bureaucracy. The division of power into separate branches of government is central to the idea of the separation of powers.In many countries, the term...

 and legislative branches. The executive government of the municipality is governed by the mayor, while the legislative government is managed by the Municipal council
Municipal council
A municipal council is the local government of a municipality. Specifically the term can refer to the institutions of various countries that can be translated by this term...

. In 8 March 2000, the year after a new constitution was introduced in Venezuela, it was decree
Decree
A decree is a rule of law issued by a head of state , according to certain procedures . It has the force of law...

d in Gaceta Official N° 36,906 that the Metropolitan District of Caracas would be created, and that some of the powers of these municipalities would be delegated to the Alcaldía Mayor, physically located in the large Libertador municipality, in the center of the city.

Economy



Businesses located here include service companies, banks, and malls, among others. Most economic activity is in services, except some industries established in its metropolitan area. The Caracas Stock Exchange
Caracas Stock Exchange
The Caracas Stock Exchange or Bolsa de Valores de Caracas is a stock exchange located in Caracas, Venezuela. Originally established in 1947, BVC merged with a competitor in 1974 to become the only securities exchange operating in Venezuela....

 and Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) are headquartered here. The PDVSA is the largest company in Venezuela, and negotiates all the international agreements
Treaty
A treaty is an express agreement under international law entered into by actors in international law, namely sovereign states and international organizations. A treaty may also be known as an agreement, protocol, covenant, convention or exchange of letters, among other terms...

 for the distribution and export of petroleum. When the company existed, the airline Viasa
Viasa
Venezolana Internacional de Aviación Sociedad Anónima , or VIASA for short, was the Venezuelan national airline between 1960 and 1997. It was headquartered in the Torre Viasa in Caracas. Launched in 1960, it was nationalised in 1975 due to financial problems, and re-privatised in 1991, with the...

 had its headquarters in the Torre Viasa.

Small and medium-size industry contributes to the Caracas economy. The city provides communication and transportation infrastructure between the metropolitan area and the rest of the country. Important industries in Caracas include chemicals, textiles, leather
Leather
Leather is a durable and flexible material created via the tanning of putrescible animal rawhide and skin, primarily cattlehide. It can be produced through different manufacturing processes, ranging from cottage industry to heavy industry.-Forms:...

, food
Food industry
The food production is a complex, global collective of diverse businesses that together supply much of the food energy consumed by the world population...

, iron
Iron
Iron is a chemical element with the symbol Fe and atomic number 26. It is a metal in the first transition series. It is the most common element forming the planet Earth as a whole, forming much of Earth's outer and inner core. It is the fourth most common element in the Earth's crust...

 and wood
Wood
Wood is a hard, fibrous tissue found in many trees. It has been used for hundreds of thousands of years for both fuel and as a construction material. It is an organic material, a natural composite of cellulose fibers embedded in a matrix of lignin which resists compression...

 products. There are also rubber
Rubber
Natural rubber, also called India rubber or caoutchouc, is an elastomer that was originally derived from latex, a milky colloid produced by some plants. The plants would be ‘tapped’, that is, an incision made into the bark of the tree and the sticky, milk colored latex sap collected and refined...

 and cement
Cement
In the most general sense of the word, a cement is a binder, a substance that sets and hardens independently, and can bind other materials together. The word "cement" traces to the Romans, who used the term opus caementicium to describe masonry resembling modern concrete that was made from crushed...

 factories.

Cost of living



A 2009 United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 survey reported that the cost of living in Caracas was 89% of that of its baseline city: New York
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

. However, this statistic is based upon a fixed currency-exchange-rate of 2003 and might not be completely realistic, due to the elevated inflation rates of the last several years.

Geography


Caracas is contained entirely within a valley of the Venezuelan central range
Cordillera de la Costa Central
The Cordillera de la Costa Central is a range of mountains in Venezuela, which run east to west along the country's northern coast. It is also known as the Central Range.In the east they follow the border between the states of Vargas and Miranda...

, and separated from the Caribbean coast by a roughly 15 km expanse of El Ávila National Park
National park
A national park is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or owns. Although individual nations designate their own national parks differently A national park is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or...

. The valley is relatively small and quite irregular, the altitude with respect to sea level
Sea level
Mean sea level is a measure of the average height of the ocean's surface ; used as a standard in reckoning land elevation...

 varies from between 870 and 1,043 meters (2,854–3,422 ft), with 900 meters (2,953 ft) in the historic zone. This, along with the rapid population growth, has profoundly influenced the urban development
Urban planning
Urban planning incorporates areas such as economics, design, ecology, sociology, geography, law, political science, and statistics to guide and ensure the orderly development of settlements and communities....

 of the city. The most elevated point of the Capital District, wherein the city is located, is the Pico El Ávila, which rises to 2,159 meters (7,083 ft). The main body of water in Caracas is the Guaire river, which flows across the city and empties into the Tuy river, which is also fed by the El Valle and San Pedro rivers, in addition to numerous streams which descend from El Ávila. The La Mariposa and Camatagua reservoirs provide water to the city.

Climate



Under the Köppen climate classification
Köppen climate classification
The Köppen climate classification is one of the most widely used climate classification systems. It was first published by Crimea German climatologist Wladimir Köppen in 1884, with several later modifications by Köppen himself, notably in 1918 and 1936...

, Caracas has a Tropical savanna climate
Tropical savanna climate
Tropical savanna climate or tropical wet and dry climate is a type of climate that corresponds to the Köppen climate classification categories "Aw" and '"As."...

. Caracas is also intertropical, with precipitation that varies between 900 and 1,300 millimeters (35–51 in) (annual), in the city proper, and up to 2,000 millimeters (79 in) in some parts of the Mountain range. While Caracas is within the tropics, due to its altitude temperatures are generally not nearly as high as other tropical locations at sea level. The annual average temperature is approximately 23.1 °C (74 °F), with the average of the coldest month (January) 21.1 °C (70 °F) and the average of the warmest month (May) 25 °C (77 °F), which gives a small annual thermal amplitude of 3.9 C-change. In the months of December and January abundant fog may appear, in addition to a sudden nightly drop in temperature, until reaching 7 °C (44.6 °F) or less. This peculiar weather is known by the natives of Caracas as the Pacheco. In addition, nightly temperatures at any time of the year are much (12 to 16 °C) lower than daytime highs and usually do not remain above 20 °C (68 °F), resulting in very pleasant evening temperatures. Hail storms appear in Caracas, although only on rare occasions. Electrical storm
Electrical storm
Electrical storm may refer to:* A thunderstorm* A medical condition of chaotic electrical activity of the heart, usually manifested by ventricular tachycardia* "Electrical Storm" , song by U2...

s are much more frequent, especially between June and October, due to the city being in a closed valley and the orographic action of Cerro El Ávila
Cerro El Ávila
The El Ávila National Park covers part of the mountainous region of the coastal area of north-central Venezuela. The area's highest elevation is Pico Naiguatá, at 2.765 meters above sea level...

.



Demographics


The population of Caracas proper (Distrito Capital) is estimated to be 3,097,350 as of 2009, while that of the Metropolitan District of Caracas is estimated at 3,001,514 as of 2008. The conurbation
Conurbation
A conurbation is a region comprising a number of cities, large towns, and other urban areas that, through population growth and physical expansion, have merged to form one continuous urban and industrially developed area...

 including the surrounding suburbs has an estimated population of 5.3 million as of 2010.

Crime


Venezuela and its capital, Caracas, are reported to both have among the highest per capita murder rates in the world. Most murders and other violent crimes go unsolved. Armed criminal gangs often operate with impunity throughout the urban areas. The poor neighborhoods that cover the hills around Caracas are extremely dangerous. U.S. travelers have reported robberies and other crimes committed against them by individuals wearing uniforms and purporting to be police officers or National Guard members. Police investigations into kidnappings have revealed that police officers are often involved. Caracas tops list of murder capitals of the world.

Landmarks






Federal Capitol


Located at the southwest corner of Plaza Bolívar is the edifice that belonged from 1637 to 1874 to the Conceptions Nuns monastery, and that from 19 April 1810 was the seat of the first congress. The southern part is the present seat of the National Assembly, and the northern part was formerly the Elliptic room, Triptic room and Shields room. It was built during the government of Antonio Guzmán Blanco
Antonio Guzmán Blanco
Antonio Leocadio Guzmán Blanco was President of Venezuela for three separate terms, from 1870–1877, from 1879–1884, and from 1886–1887....

.

East Park


The Caracas East Park (Parque del Este, now officially Parque Generalísimo Francisco de Miranda) was designed by Brazilian architect Roberto Burle Marx
Roberto Burle Marx
Roberto Burle Marx was a Brazilian landscape architect whose designs of parks and gardens made him world famous. He is accredited with having introduced modernist landscape architecture to Brazil...

. It is a green paradise in the middle of the city, and it contains a small zoo. A replica of the ship led by Francisco de Miranda
Francisco de Miranda
Sebastián Francisco de Miranda Ravelo y Rodríguez de Espinoza , commonly known as Francisco de Miranda , was a Venezuelan revolutionary...

, the Leander, is being built in the southern part of the park. Before there used to exist a replica of the Santa Maria
Santa María (ship)
La Santa María de la Inmaculada Concepción , was the largest of the three ships used by Christopher Columbus in his first voyage. Her master and owner was Juan de la Cosa.-History:...

 ship, used by Christopher Colombus in his voyages to America.

Teresa Carreño Cultural Complex



The Teresa Carreño Cultural Complex
Teresa Carreño Cultural Complex
The Teresa Carreño Cultural Complex , also known as Teresa Carreño Theater , is the most important theatre of Caracas and Venezuela, where performances include symphonic and popular concerts, opera, ballet and plays...

 (Complejo Cultural Teresa Carreño), or more commonly the Teresa Carreño Theatre (Teatro Teresa Carreño), is by far the most important theater of Caracas and Venezuela
Venezuela
Venezuela , officially called the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela , is a tropical country on the northern coast of South America. It borders Colombia to the west, Guyana to the east, and Brazil to the south...

, where symphonic and popular concerts imagine frequently, operas, ballet and theatre. It is the second largest theater in South America
South America
South America is a continent situated in the Western Hemisphere, mostly in the Southern Hemisphere, with a relatively small portion in the Northern Hemisphere. The continent is also considered a subcontinent of the Americas. It is bordered on the west by the Pacific Ocean and on the north and east...

, after the Teatro Colón of Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires is the capital and largest city of Argentina, and the second-largest metropolitan area in South America, after São Paulo. It is located on the western shore of the estuary of the Río de la Plata, on the southeastern coast of the South American continent...

, Argentina
Argentina
Argentina , officially the Argentine Republic , is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires...

.

Simón Bolívar birthplace house


Skyscraper
Skyscraper
A skyscraper is a tall, continuously habitable building of many stories, often designed for office and commercial use. There is no official definition or height above which a building may be classified as a skyscraper...

s may loom overhead, but there is more than a hint of original colonial flavour in this neatly proportioned reconstruction of the house where Simón Bolívar
Simón Bolívar
Simón José Antonio de la Santísima Trinidad Bolívar y Palacios Ponte y Yeiter, commonly known as Simón Bolívar was a Venezuelan military and political leader...

 was born on 24 July 1783. The museum
Museum
A museum is an institution that cares for a collection of artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic, cultural, or historical importance and makes them available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary. Most large museums are located in major cities...

's exhibits include period weapons, banners and uniforms.

Much of the original colonial interior has been replaced by monumental paintings of battle scenes, but more personal relic
Relic
In religion, a relic is a part of the body of a saint or a venerated person, or else another type of ancient religious object, carefully preserved for purposes of veneration or as a tangible memorial...

s can be seen in the nearby Bolivarian museum. Pride of place goes to the coffin in which Bolívar's remains were brought from Colombia
Colombia
Colombia, officially the Republic of Colombia , is a unitary constitutional republic comprising thirty-two departments. The country is located in northwestern South America, bordered to the east by Venezuela and Brazil; to the south by Ecuador and Peru; to the north by the Caribbean Sea; to the...

; his ashes now rest in the National Pantheon
Panteón Nacional
The Panthéon is a building in the northern edge of the old town of Caracas, Venezuela. It was originally built as a church, but is now used as a famous burial place...

.

National Pantheon



Venezuela's most venerated building is five blocks north of Plaza Bolívar, on the northern edge of the old town. Formerly a church, the building was given its new purpose as the final resting place for eminent Venezuelans by Antonio Guzmán Blanco
Antonio Guzmán Blanco
Antonio Leocadio Guzmán Blanco was President of Venezuela for three separate terms, from 1870–1877, from 1879–1884, and from 1886–1887....

 in 1874.

Parque Central Complex



At a short distance east of Plaza Bolívar is Parque Central, a concrete complex of five high-rise residential slabs of somewhat apocalyptic-appearing architecture, crowned by two 56-storey octagonal towers, one of them is under repair due to the fire which burnt the building on 17 October 2004.

Parque Central is Caracas' art and culture hub, with museum
Museum
A museum is an institution that cares for a collection of artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic, cultural, or historical importance and makes them available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary. Most large museums are located in major cities...

s, cinemas and the Teresa Carreño Cultural Complex
Teresa Carreño Cultural Complex
The Teresa Carreño Cultural Complex , also known as Teresa Carreño Theater , is the most important theatre of Caracas and Venezuela, where performances include symphonic and popular concerts, opera, ballet and plays...

. The West Tower balcony, on the 52nd floor, gives a 360° bird's-eye view of Caracas.

Public squares

  • Plaza Bolívar is the focus of the old town with the monument to El Libertador, Simon Bolívar, at its heart. Modern high-rise buildings have overpowered much of the colonial flavor of Caracas' founding neighbourhood
    Neighbourhood
    A neighbourhood or neighborhood is a geographically localised community within a larger city, town or suburb. Neighbourhoods are often social communities with considerable face-to-face interaction among members. "Researchers have not agreed on an exact definition...

    .
  • Plaza Venezuela is the geographic center of Caracas. It is a large urban plaza at the entrance of the Central University of Venezuela. Kinetic artists have displayed their works there, including Carlos Cruz-Diez
    Carlos Cruz-Díez
    Carlos Cruz-Diez is a Venezuelan kinetic and op artist. He lives in Paris. He has spent his professional career working and teaching between both Paris and Caracas. His work is represented in museums and public art sites internationally...

    , Alejandro Otero
    Alejandro Otero
    Alejandro Otero was a Venezuelan artist, writer and cultural promoter.He studied at the "Escuela de Artes Plásticas y Artes Aplicadas de Caracas" from 1939 to 1945...

     and Jesus Soto. East of the Plaza is the Plaza Venezuela Fountain, a large computerized display of water, music and colored light refurbished in 2009 to include the latest available technology.
  • Plaza Caracas was constructed in 1983. It is in the Simón Bolívar Center, at the foot of the 30-story towers, dominating El Silencio District and forming a unique testimony to the early days of the modernization of the city. It has various levels for pedestrian and motorised traffic, and contains the business, shops, restaurants, services of a zone in which are concentrated public and private institutions.
  • Plaza San Jacinto is situated among the San Jacinto, San Pablo, El Chorro and Trapos's corners. Its history dates from 1603 and there used to be the market of the city. In the middle of the square, there was an Antonio Leocadio Guzmán statue and after which this place is called now "The Venezuelan". In the northwest part of the square is found the Sun's clock, made by Alexander Humboldt when he was in Caracas. In 1983, as part of the bycentenarial anniversary of Simón Bolívar, was built a black chambre. In 2010, as part of the celebration of the Bicentenary of the events of 19 April 1810, was inaugurated a steel obelisk.

El Hatillo



El Hatillo is a colonial
Colonisation
Colonization occurs whenever any one or more species populate an area. The term, which is derived from the Latin colere, "to inhabit, cultivate, frequent, practice, tend, guard, respect", originally related to humans. However, 19th century biogeographers dominated the term to describe the...

 town located at the south-east suburbs of Caracas in the municipal area of the same name. This small town, which is one of Venezuela's few well-preserved typical colonial areas, gives an idea of what Caracas was like in centuries past.

Cerro El Ávila



Cerro El Ávila (Mountain El Ávila) (Indigenous name: Guaraira Repano), is a mountain in the mid-North of Venezuela. It rises next to Caracas and separates the city from the Caribbean Sea
Caribbean Sea
The Caribbean Sea is a sea of the Atlantic Ocean located in the tropics of the Western hemisphere. It is bounded by Mexico and Central America to the west and southwest, to the north by the Greater Antilles, and to the east by the Lesser Antilles....

. It is considered the lungs of Caracas because there is a lot of vegetation on it.

Las Mercedes



This zone contains restaurants with varied gastronomical specialties, along with pubs, bars, pools and art galleries.

Altamira neighborhood



Altamira is a neighborhood located in the Chacao
Chacao Municipality, Miranda
Chacao Municipality, is one of the five political and administrative subdivisions of the city of Caracas, Venezuela. The other four are Baruta, El Hatillo, Libertador and Sucre. This legal entity is known as the Caracas Metropolitan District...

 municipality of Caracas. It has its own Metro Station
Caracas Metro
The Caracas Metro is a mass rapid transit system serving Caracas, Venezuela. It is constructed and operated by Compañía Anónima Metro de Caracas, a government-owned company that was founded in 1977 by José González-Lander who headed the project for more than thirty years since the early planning...

, many hotels, malls and restaurants, and is an important business and cultural centre. The Francisco de Miranda
Francisco de Miranda
Sebastián Francisco de Miranda Ravelo y Rodríguez de Espinoza , commonly known as Francisco de Miranda , was a Venezuelan revolutionary...

 avenue (a major avenue in Caracas) and the Distibuidor Altamira (a congested highway exit
Interchange (road)
In the field of road transport, an interchange is a road junction that typically uses grade separation, and one or more ramps, to permit traffic on at least one highway to pass through the junction without directly crossing any other traffic stream. It differs from a standard intersection, at which...

) are both located in Altamira.

Religious buildings


The Iglesia de San Francisco
San Francisco church
San Francisco church is a church in Caracas, Venezuela ....

 is of historical value. Bolívar's funeral was held here twelve years after his death. Here he was proclaimed Libertador
Title of honor
An honorary title or title of honor is a title bestowed upon individuals or organizations as an award in recognition of their merits.Sometimes the title bears the same or nearly the same name as a title of authority, but the person bestowed does not have to carry any duties, possibly except for...

 in 1813 by the people of Caracas. The church has gilded baroque
Baroque
The Baroque is a period and the style that used exaggerated motion and clear, easily interpreted detail to produce drama, tension, exuberance, and grandeur in sculpture, painting, literature, dance, and music...

 altarpieces, and retains much of its original colonial interior, despite being given a treatment in the 19th century under the auspices of Antonio Guzmán Blanco
Antonio Guzmán Blanco
Antonio Leocadio Guzmán Blanco was President of Venezuela for three separate terms, from 1870–1877, from 1879–1884, and from 1886–1887....

, which was intended to be modernizing. It contains some 17th century masterpieces of art, carvings, sculptures and oil paintings. The Central University of Venezuela, established during the reign of Philip V
Philip V of Spain
Philip V was King of Spain from 15 November 1700 to 15 January 1724, when he abdicated in favor of his son Louis, and from 6 September 1724, when he assumed the throne again upon his son's death, to his death.Before his reign, Philip occupied an exalted place in the royal family of France as a...

, was lodged for centuries in the church cloisters next door, which today are the seat of the Language Academy, and the Academies of History, Physics, and Mathematics.

The Mosque of Sheikh Ibrahim Al-Ibrahim
Mosque of Sheikh Ibrahim Al-Ibrahim
The Mosque Ibrahim Ibin Abdul Aziz Al-Ibrahim or Caracas Mosque is a mosque in the El Recreo district of Caracas. It is the largest mosque in Latin America. The construction of the mosque began in 1989 by Sheikh Ibrahim Bin Abdulaziz. The building was designed by architect Zuhe Fayez...

 is the second largest mosque in Latin America. For many years it was the biggest.

The Union Israelita de Caracas is the biggest Synagogue for the Jewish Ashkenazi community in Caracas. Its mission is to host the religious services and preserve the memory of the Jewish heritage in Venezuela. Similarly, Mariperez is the biggest Synagogue for the Jewish Sephardic community in Caracas.

Central University of Venezuela



The Central University of Venezuela (Universidad Central de Venezuela in Spanish) is a public University. Founded in 1721, it is the oldest university in Venezuela and one of the first in Latin America
Latin America
Latin America is a region of the Americas where Romance languages  – particularly Spanish and Portuguese, and variably French – are primarily spoken. Latin America has an area of approximately 21,069,500 km² , almost 3.9% of the Earth's surface or 14.1% of its land surface area...

. The university campus was designed by architect Carlos Raúl Villanueva
Carlos Raúl Villanueva
Carlos Raúl Villanueva was the most prominent Venezuelan architect of the 20th century and one of the great Modernists. He played a major role in the development and modernization of Caracas, Maracay and other cities across the country...

 and it was declared World Heritage by UNESCO
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

 in 2000. The Ciudad Universitaria de Caracas
Ciudad Universitaria de Caracas
The University City of Caracas is the main Campus of the Central University of Venezuela. It was designed by the Venezuelan architect Carlos Raúl Villanueva and was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2000...

, as the main Campus is also known, is considered a masterpiece of architecture and urban planning and it is the only university campus designed in the 20th century that has received such recognition by UNESCO
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

.


Simón Bolívar University



The Simón Bolívar University (Universidad Simón Bolívar, in Spanish, or USB) is a public institution located in Caracas, Venezuela
Venezuela
Venezuela , officially called the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela , is a tropical country on the northern coast of South America. It borders Colombia to the west, Guyana to the east, and Brazil to the south...

, with scientific and technological orientation. Its motto is "La Universidad de la Excelencia" ("University of Excellence"). Both nationally and globally, Simón Bolívar University
Universidad Simón Bolívar
Simón Bolívar University or USB, is a public institution located in Miranda State, Venezuela with scientific and technological orientation....

 is a well-known school with a high reputation in scientific and engineering careers.

Other universities

  • Universidad Católica Andrés Bello
    Universidad Católica Andrés Bello
    Universidad Católica Andrés Bello is a private university in Venezuela. One of the biggest universities in Venezuela, UCAB has campuses in several cities, such as Caracas , Los Teques, Guayana and Coro....

  • Universidad Metropolitana
    Universidad Metropolitana
    The Metropolitan University was founded in 1970 by a group of entrepreneurs led by Eugenio Mendoza Goiticoa in the terrains donated by the businessman Pius Schlageter, father of the venezuelan painter Eduardo Schlageter. It is located in the city of Caracas, Venezuela, near Petare.Today, the...

  • Universidad Nacional Experimental Simón Rodríguez
    Universidad Nacional Experimental Simón Rodríguez
    Universidad Nacional Experimental Simón Rodríguez is a university in Caracas....

  • Universidad Santa Maria
    Universidad Santa María (Caracas)
    Universidad Santa María is a private university in Venezuela. USM has campuses in several cities, such as Caracas , Puerto La Cruz, Barinas and Puerto Ayacucho....

  • Universidad José María Vargas
    Universidad José María Vargas
    Universidad Santa María is a university in Caracas. JaJa...

  • Universidad Monteavila
    Universidad Monteavila
    Universidad Monteávila is a private university in Caracas, Venezuela....

  • Universidad Nueva Esparta
    Universidad Nueva Esparta
    Universidad Nueva Esparta is a private university in Caracas. It was founded in 1954 by Juan Bautista Marcano Marcano.-External links:*...

  • Universidad Experimental Politécnica Antonio José de Sucre
    Universidad Experimental Politécnica Antonio José de Sucre
    Universidad Experimental Politécnica Antonio José de Sucre Vicerectorado Luis Caballero Mejías is a university in Caracas.-External links:* Pagina oficial del Vicerectorado....

  • Universidad Pedagógica Experimental Libertador
    Universidad Pedagógica Experimental Libertador
    Universidad Pedagógica Experimental Libertador is a university in Caracas....

  • Universidad Alejandro de Humboldt
    Universidad Alejandro de Humboldt
    - About UAH or Universidad Alejandro de Humboldt :Universidad Alejandro de Humboldt, named in honor of Alexander von Humboldt German naturalist and explorer; UAH is a Venezuela private University sponsored by the Civil Association Educational Humboldt, created by the National University Council in...

  • Universidad Bolivariana de Venezuela
    Universidad Bolivariana de Venezuela
    The Universidad Bolivariana de Venezuela is a state university in Venezuela founded in 2003 by decree of President Hugo Chávez.The UBV is a part of the Chávez government's "Mission Sucre" social programs, which aim to provide free higher education to the poor...

  • Universidad Experimental de las Fuerzas Armadas
  • Academia Militar de Venezuela
  • Escuela de Formacion de Oficiales de las Fuerzas Armadas de Cooperacion

International schools

  • International Christian School
  • Colegio Internacional de Caracas
    Colegio Internacional de Caracas
    Colegio Internacional de Caracas is an private English-medium school located in Caracas, Venezuela serving the educational needs of pre-nursery to twelfth grade students. The goal of the school is to foster the intellectual and personal development of its students in a caring and supportive...

  • British School of Caracas
  • Escuela Campo Alegre
    Escuela Campo Alegre
    Escuela Campo Alegre is a K-12 American International school located in Caracas, Venezuela. It was founded in 1937 in the neighborhood of Campo Alegre, but the school grew in such a way that it had to be moved to its present location in Las Mercedes. The school provides courses from the nursery...


Sports



There are professional Association Football, baseball
Baseball
Baseball is a bat-and-ball sport played between two teams of nine players each. The aim is to score runs by hitting a thrown ball with a bat and touching a series of four bases arranged at the corners of a ninety-foot diamond...

 and several other sports.

Professional teams include Deportivo Italia
Deportivo Italia
Deportivo Petare Fútbol Club is a Venezuelan football club based in Caracas. Formed in 1948 as "Deportivo Italia F.C.", the club after fifty years merged with "Deportivo Chacao F.C." in 1998, and was called Deportivo Italchacao for eight years...

, Caracas Fútbol Club
Caracas Fútbol Club
Caracas Fútbol Club is a Venezuelan football team based in Caracas. The club has won eleven First Division titles making it the most successful in Venezuelan football history....

, SD Centro Italo Venezolano
SD Centro Italo Venezolano
The club Centro Ítalo Venezolano is a professional football club promoted to Segunda División in 2009, based in Caracas.-Current first team squad:...

, Estrella Roja FC
Estrella Roja FC
Estrella Roja Fútbol Club is a professional football club promoted to the Venezuelan league in 2007, based in Caracas.-Squad:...

 and Real Esppor Club
Real Esppor Club
The club Real Esppor Club is a professional football club promoted to Venezuelan league in 2009, based in Caracas.-Current first team squad:-External links:*...

. The Deportivo Italia
Deportivo Italia
Deportivo Petare Fútbol Club is a Venezuelan football club based in Caracas. Formed in 1948 as "Deportivo Italia F.C.", the club after fifty years merged with "Deportivo Chacao F.C." in 1998, and was called Deportivo Italchacao for eight years...

 has reached the semifinals of international tournaments such as the Copa Libertadores de America
Copa Libertadores de América
The Copa Santander Libertadores de América , known simply as the Copa Libertadores and originally known as the Copa Campeones de América , is an annual international club football competition organized by CONMEBOL since 1960...

, while the Caracas Fútbol Club
Caracas Fútbol Club
Caracas Fútbol Club is a Venezuelan football team based in Caracas. The club has won eleven First Division titles making it the most successful in Venezuelan football history....

 has reached the quarterfinals.

Baseball teams Tiburones de La Guaira
Tiburones de La Guaira
The Tiburones de La Guaira are a baseball team in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League. Based in the city of La Guaira, the Tiburones have won seven national championships since their founding in 1962.-History:...

 and Leones del Caracas
Leones del Caracas
The Leones del Caracas is a Venezuelan baseball team that plays in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League. Since its inception, the team has played in the Estadio Universitario in Caracas...

 play in the Estadio Universitario de la UCV, of the Central University of Venezuela
Central University of Venezuela
The Central University of Venezuela is a premier public University of Venezuela located in Caracas...

, with a capacity of 26,000 spectators.

Another baseball team started in Caracas: the Navegantes del Magallanes
Navegantes del Magallanes
The Navegantes del Magallanes are a baseball team in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League. Based in Valencia, the Navegantes have won ten LVBP championships and two Caribbean World Series.-Pitchers:...

. It was moved to Valencia, Carabobo in the 1970s.

Association Football stadiums include:
  • Estadio Olímpico de la UCV
    Estadio Olímpico (Caracas)
    The Estadio Olímpico de la UCV is a multi-purpose stadium in Caracas, Venezuela. It is a multipurpose stadium with a running track used primarily for the practice of football, athletics and rugby, which is part of the Ciudad Universitaria de Caracas and as such named a UNESCO World Heritage Site,...

    , with capacity of 30 000 spectators is seat of the Deportivo Italia
    Deportivo Italia
    Deportivo Petare Fútbol Club is a Venezuelan football club based in Caracas. Formed in 1948 as "Deportivo Italia F.C.", the club after fifty years merged with "Deportivo Chacao F.C." in 1998, and was called Deportivo Italchacao for eight years...

     and Caracas Fútbol Club
    Caracas Fútbol Club
    Caracas Fútbol Club is a Venezuelan football team based in Caracas. The club has won eleven First Division titles making it the most successful in Venezuelan football history....

    .
  • Brígido Iriarte stadium
    Estadio Brígido Iriarte
    Estadio Brígido Iriarte is a multi-purpose stadium in Caracas, Venezuela. It is currently used mostly for football matches and has been used as the home stadium of Caracas Fútbol Club. The stadium holds 15,000 people.-Gallery:...

    , with a capacity of 12 000 spectators (old seat of the Deportivo Italia
    Deportivo Italia
    Deportivo Petare Fútbol Club is a Venezuelan football club based in Caracas. Formed in 1948 as "Deportivo Italia F.C.", the club after fifty years merged with "Deportivo Chacao F.C." in 1998, and was called Deportivo Italchacao for eight years...

     and Caracas Fútbol Club
    Caracas Fútbol Club
    Caracas Fútbol Club is a Venezuelan football team based in Caracas. The club has won eleven First Division titles making it the most successful in Venezuelan football history....

    , and seat of the Estrella Roja FC
    Estrella Roja FC
    Estrella Roja Fútbol Club is a professional football club promoted to the Venezuelan league in 2007, based in Caracas.-Squad:...

    ). The Caracas Fútbol Club opened its own stadium in 2005, Campo Deportivo Cocodrilos.
  • Cocodrilos de Caracas plays in the Venezuelan professional basketball league. They play their games in the "Gimnasio José Beracasa" in the neighbourhood of El Paraíso
    El Paraíso
    El Paraíso is a municipality in the Honduran department of El Paraíso. The capital is Yuscaran.The town is the site of a cigar factory operated by Nestor Plasencia, in which cigars are made under a variety of labels, including that of Rocky Patel....

    .


Caracas is the seat of the National Institute of Sports
National Institute of Sports
Founded in 1961, Netaji Subhas National Institute of Sports or NIS, is Asia's largest Sports Institute located in princely city of Patiala...

 and of the Venezuelan Olympic Committee
International Olympic Committee
The International Olympic Committee is an international corporation based in Lausanne, Switzerland, created by Pierre de Coubertin on 23 June 1894 with Demetrios Vikelas as its first president...

.

Caracas hosted the 1983 Pan American Games
1983 Pan American Games
The ninth Pan American Games were held in Caracas, Venezuela from August 14 to August 29, 1983. The games were the first major international competition to include relatively accurate steroid testing...

.

Teams

  • Association Football: Caracas Fútbol Club
    Caracas Fútbol Club
    Caracas Fútbol Club is a Venezuelan football team based in Caracas. The club has won eleven First Division titles making it the most successful in Venezuelan football history....

    , Deportivo Petare, Atletico Venezuela
    Atlético Venezuela
    The club Atlético Venezuela is a professional football club, founded and promoted to Venezuelan league in 2009, based in Maiquetía.-Current first team squad:-Achievements:...

    , Estrella Roja Futbol club
    Estrella Roja FC
    Estrella Roja Fútbol Club is a professional football club promoted to the Venezuelan league in 2007, based in Caracas.-Squad:...

    , Real Esppor Club
    Real Esppor Club
    The club Real Esppor Club is a professional football club promoted to Venezuelan league in 2009, based in Caracas.-Current first team squad:-External links:*...

    .
  • Baseball: Tiburones de la Guaira
    Tiburones de La Guaira
    The Tiburones de La Guaira are a baseball team in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League. Based in the city of La Guaira, the Tiburones have won seven national championships since their founding in 1962.-History:...

    , Leones del Caracas
    Leones del Caracas
    The Leones del Caracas is a Venezuelan baseball team that plays in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League. Since its inception, the team has played in the Estadio Universitario in Caracas...

    .
  • Basketball: Cocodrilos de Caracas.

Culture



Caracas is Venezuela's cultural capital
Cultural capital
The term cultural capital refers to non-financial social assets; they may be educational or intellectual, which might promote social mobility beyond economic means....

, with many restaurants, theaters, museums, and shopping
Shopping
Shopping is the examining of goods or services from retailers with the intent to purchase at that time. Shopping is an activity of selection and/or purchase. In some contexts it is considered a leisure activity as well as an economic one....

 centers. The city is home to an array of immigrants from but not limited to: Spain, Italy, Portugal, the Middle East, Germany, China, and Latin America
Latin America
Latin America is a region of the Americas where Romance languages  – particularly Spanish and Portuguese, and variably French – are primarily spoken. Latin America has an area of approximately 21,069,500 km² , almost 3.9% of the Earth's surface or 14.1% of its land surface area...

n countries.

Museums, libraries and cultural centres


Caracas, has been a city with great cultural aspirations throughout the course of its history. Institutions such as the old Atheneum bear witness to this awareness. The National library holds a great amount of volumes, and affords abundant bibliographic information for the student of the discovery and independence of Venezuela
Venezuela
Venezuela , officially called the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela , is a tropical country on the northern coast of South America. It borders Colombia to the west, Guyana to the east, and Brazil to the south...

. The museum of Colonial Art has on show an interesting exhibition of Venezuelan art from the periods previous to its independence with fountains, furniture, colonial courtyards etc. In the Fine Arts Museum are kept some archaeological finds with some good examples of precolombine pottery.

Since 1974, Caracas has had a Contemporary Art Museum, containing works representing the most important tendencies in contemporary art, and since 1982, counts with a Children's Museum
Children's Museum of Caracas
Children's Museum of Caracas is a privately managed museum foundation in Caracas, Venezuela's capital city, established in 1982 and aimed at teaching children about science, technology, culture and arts....

, a privately managed museum
Museum
A museum is an institution that cares for a collection of artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic, cultural, or historical importance and makes them available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary. Most large museums are located in major cities...

 foundation, with the purpose of teaching children about science, technology, culture and arts. The Natural Science Museum, has a rich collection os archaeological pieces from the primitive native cultures, in these collections and in other no less important galleries (Raúl Santana Creole Museum, Transport Museum, the Coin Museum, Bolivarian Museum, Jacobo Borges Museum, Carlos Cruz-Diez Museum, Alejandro Otero Museum, Sacred Museum, etc.) the cultural aspirations of Caracas are more than evident.


Gastronomy


Caracas has a gastronomical heritage due to the influence of immigrants, leading to a choice of regional and international cuisine. There is a variety of international restaurants including American
American cuisine
American cuisine is a style of food preparation originating in the United States of America.American cuisine may also refer to:* American Cuisine , a 1998 French film...

, French
French cuisine
French cuisine is a style of food preparation originating from France that has developed from centuries of social change. In the Middle Ages, Guillaume Tirel , a court chef, authored Le Viandier, one of the earliest recipe collections of Medieval France...

, Arabic, Italian
Italian cuisine
Italian cuisine has developed through centuries of social and political changes, with roots as far back as the 4th century BCE. Italian cuisine in itself takes heavy influences, including Etruscan, ancient Greek, ancient Roman, Byzantine, Jewish and Arab cuisines...

, Spanish
Spanish cuisine
Spanish cuisine consists of a variety of dishes, which stem from differences in geography, culture and climate. It is heavily influenced by seafood available from the waters that surround the country, and reflects the country's deep maritime roots...

, Indian, Chinese
Chinese cuisine
Chinese cuisine is any of several styles originating in the regions of China, some of which have become highly popular in other parts of the world – from Asia to the Americas, Australia, Western Europe and Southern Africa...

, Peruvian, Japanese
Japanese cuisine
Japanese cuisine has developed over the centuries as a result of many political and social changes throughout Japan. The cuisine eventually changed with the advent of the Medieval age which ushered in a shedding of elitism with the age of shogun rule...

, Mediterranean and Mexican. The district of La Candelaria contains Spanish restaurants, resulting from Galician and Canarian immigrants that came to this area in the mid-20th c.

Notable natives



Caracas has been the birthplace of many politicians and artists that notably shaped the country's history and culture:
  • Simón Bolívar
    Simón Bolívar
    Simón José Antonio de la Santísima Trinidad Bolívar y Palacios Ponte y Yeiter, commonly known as Simón Bolívar was a Venezuelan military and political leader...

  • Magglio Ordoñez
    Magglio Ordóñez
    Magglio José Ordóñez Delgado is a Venezuelan Major League Baseball right fielder. He has played for the Chicago White Sox and Detroit Tigers . Ordóñez is six feet, one inch tall and weighs .-Professional career:...

  • Simón Rodríguez
    Simón Rodríguez
    Simón Rodríguez , known during his exile from Spanish America as Samuel Robinson, was a South American philosopher and educator, notably Simón Bolívar's tutor and mentor....

  • Andrés Bello
    Andrés Bello
    Andrés de Jesús María y José Bello López was a Venezuelan humanist, poet, lawmaker, philosopher, educator and philologist, whose political and literary works constitute an important part of Spanish American culture...

  • Francisco de Miranda
    Francisco de Miranda
    Sebastián Francisco de Miranda Ravelo y Rodríguez de Espinoza , commonly known as Francisco de Miranda , was a Venezuelan revolutionary...

  • Luisa Cáceres de Arismendi
    Luisa Cáceres de Arismendi
    María Luisa Cáceres Díaz de Arismendi was a heroine of the Venezuelan War of Independence.-The beginning of the war:...

  • Fermín Toro
    Fermín Toro
    Fermín Toro y Blanco was a politician, diplomat and author. His remains were located at the Panteón Nacional on 23 April 1876...

  • Teresa Carreño
    Teresa Carreño
    María Teresa Carreño García de Sena was a Venezuelan pianist, singer, composer, and conductor.Born into a musical family, she was at first taught by her father, then by Mathias, Louis Moreau Gottschalk and Anton Rubinstein and her talent was recognized at an early age...

  • Rómulo Gallegos
    Rómulo Gallegos
    Rómulo Ángel del Monte Carmelo Gallegos Freire was a Venezuelan novelist and politician. For a period of some nine months during 1948, he was the first cleanly elected president in his country's history....

  • Francisco Herrera Luque
    Francisco Herrera Luque
    Francisco José Herrera Luque was a Venezuelan writer, psychiatrist and diplomat. Author of well known historical novels, including: Boves, el Urogallo , Los Amos del Valle and La Luna de Fausto .Son of Francisco Herrera Guerrero and María Luisa Luque Carvallo...

  • Fernando Paz Castillo
    Fernando Paz Castillo
    Fernando Paz Castillo Aristiguieta , was a venezuelan poet, literary critic, diplomat, educator and founder member of the Bellas Artes Circle....

  • Carlos Cruz-Diez
    Carlos Cruz-Díez
    Carlos Cruz-Diez is a Venezuelan kinetic and op artist. He lives in Paris. He has spent his professional career working and teaching between both Paris and Caracas. His work is represented in museums and public art sites internationally...

  • Serge Blanco
    Serge Blanco
    Serge Blanco is a former rugby union footballer who played fullback for Biarritz Olympique and the French national side, gaining 93 caps, 81 of them at fullback. His alternative position was wing....

  • Pedro Gual
    Pedro Gual Escandon
    Pedro José Ramón Gual Escandón , was a Venezuelan lawyer, politician, journalist and diplomat...

  • Antonio Guzmán Blanco
    Antonio Guzmán Blanco
    Antonio Leocadio Guzmán Blanco was President of Venezuela for three separate terms, from 1870–1877, from 1879–1884, and from 1886–1887....

  • Armando Reverón
    Armando Reverón
    Armando Julio Reverón was a modernist painter of the late 19th and early 20th century in Venezuela. Most of his work was inspired by the coast, landscape and people of Macuto, located in the central coast of Venezuela, and was characterized by his view and expression of the bright luminosity of...

  • Yucef Merhi
    Yucef Merhi
    Yucef Merhi is a Venezuelan artist, poet and computer programmer, based in New York.-Life and work:Yucef Merhi was born in Caracas, Venezuela. He studied at Universidad Central de Venezuela and New School University.. His artistic practice began in the mid 80s...

  • Martín Tovar y Tovar
    Martín Tovar y Tovar
    Martín Tovar y Tovar was one of the most important and high-profile Venezuelan painters of the 19th century. Tovar y Tovar's most famous work is his famous and well-known depiction of the Battle of Carabobo...

  • Arturo Uslar-Pietri
  • José Ángel Lamas
    José Ángel Lamas
    José Ángel Lamas was a Venezuelan classical musician and composer born in Caracas. He was the main representative of the classical period in Venezuela....

  • Juan Antonio Pérez Bonalde
    Juan Antonio Pérez Bonalde
    Juan Antonio Pérez Bonalde was a Venezuelan translator and poet. He is buried in the National Pantheon of Venezuela.-Life:Juan Antonio Pérez Bonalde was born in Caracas, Venezuela, in 1846. He lived many years in exile, due to political problems his family had with the government of that time...

  • Francisco Massiani
    Francisco Massiani
    Francisco Massiani is Venezuelan a writer and painter. His first novel, Piedra de mar has been a bestseller since its publication. It's a Bildungsroman of a middle class teenager in Caracas...

  • Jorge Liberato Urosa Savino
  • Juan Bautista Plaza
    Juan Bautista Plaza
    Juan Bautista Plaza Alfonso was a classical composer. He began studies in medicine at the Central University of Venezuela but, with time, left in order to dedicate himself to music. His first teacher was Jesus Maria Suárez. He studied in Rome from 1920 and 1923 and obtained the title of...

  • Lorenzo Mendoza
    Lorenzo Mendoza
    Lorenzo Mendoza Giménez oversees Venezuela's largest privately held company, $ 4 billion Empresas Polar. He is the son of Lorenzo Alejandro Mendoza Quintero and Leonor Giménez Pocaterra.-Early life:...

  • Juan Pablo Pérez Alfonzo
    Juan Pablo Pérez Alfonzo
    Juan Pablo Pérez Alfonso , was a prominent Venezuelan diplomat, politician and lawyer primarily responsible for the inception and creation of OPEC.-Early career:...

  • Juan Vicente Torrealba
    Juan Vicente Torrealba
    Juan Vicente Torrealba Pérez in Caracas, Venezuela, is a Venezuelan harpist and composer of popular music.Although born on the outskirts of Caracas, the family moved while he was very young to a ranch in Camaguán, Guárico. The poverty of the family and the region were such that he worked as a...

  • Aquiles Nazoa
    Aquiles Nazoa
    Aquiles Nazoa was a Venezuelan writer, journalist, poet and humorist. His work expressed the values of popular Venezuelan culture.He worked in the newspaper El Universal as a packer, later becoming a proof-reader...

  • Alfredo Sadel
    Alfredo Sadel
    Alfredo Sadel was a popular Venezuelan singer and actor. Born Alfredo Sánchez Luna in Caracas, Venezuela, Sadel was affectionately called "The Favorite Tenor of Venezuela" . He adopted his stage name by combining the first syllable of his surname with the last syllable of the surname of his...

  • Manuel Caballero
    Manuel Caballero
    Manuel Antonio Caballero Agüero was a notable Venezuelan historian, journalist, best-selling author and professor of contemporary Venezuelan History at the Central University of Venezuela....

  • Oscar D'León
    Oscar D'León
    Oscar Emilio León Somoza, better known as Oscar D'León is a Venezuelan musician who became internationally famous for his salsa music. In Spanish, he is known as El Sonero del Mundo . His most famous song is perhaps "Llorarás," which he recorded in 1975 with his group La Dimensión Latina...

  • Baruj Benacerraf
    Baruj Benacerraf
    Baruj Benacerraf was a Venezuelan-born American immunologist, who shared the 1980 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for the "discovery of the major histocompatibility complex genes which encode cell surface protein molecules important for the immune system's distinction between self and...

  • Ali Lenin Aguilera
    Ali Lenin Aguilera
    Ali Lenin Aguilera is a Venezuelan entrepreneur , corporate financial advisor and lawyer.-Professional life:...

  • Francisco Rodriguez
  • Andrés Galarraga
    Andrés Galarraga
    Andrés José Padovani Galarraga is a former Major League Baseball first baseman who played for the Montreal Expos , St. Louis Cardinals , Colorado Rockies , Atlanta Braves , Texas Rangers , San Francisco Giants and Anaheim Angels...

  • Cesar Baena
    Cesar Baena
    Cesar Augusto Baena Sierraalta, , is a Venezuelan cross country skier. He was the winner of the 7 km Merino Muster in New Zealand in 2009. He is the first South-American Cross Country Skier to participate in World Cup for Cross Country Skiing.- Education :Baena was born in Altamira, Caracas...

  • Jacobo Borges
    Jacobo Borges
    Jacobo Borges is a contemporary, neo-figurative Latin- American artist. His curiosity for exploring different mediums made him a painter, drawer, film director, stage designer and plastic artist...

  • Dayana Mendoza
    Dayana Mendoza
    Dayana Sabrina Mendoza Moncada is a model and beauty pageant titleholder who won the titles of Miss Venezuela 2007 and Miss Universe 2008.-Personal life:...

  • Majandra Delfino
    Majandra Delfino
    Majandra Delfino is an Alma Award-nominated Venezuelan-American actress and singer best known for her role as Maria DeLuca on the television series Roswell and Georgia's best friend, Jo Pye on the State of Georgia.-Personal life:Delfino was born in Caracas, Venezuela, the daughter of an...


Transportation




  • The Caracas Metro
    Caracas Metro
    The Caracas Metro is a mass rapid transit system serving Caracas, Venezuela. It is constructed and operated by Compañía Anónima Metro de Caracas, a government-owned company that was founded in 1977 by José González-Lander who headed the project for more than thirty years since the early planning...

     has been in operation since March 27, 1983. With 4 lines, 47 stations and about 10 more to be constructed. It covers a great part of the city and also has an integrated ticket system that combines the route of the Metro with those offered by the Metrobús, a bus service of the Caracas Metro.
  • Buses are the main means of mass transportation
    Public transport
    Public transport is a shared passenger transportation service which is available for use by the general public, as distinct from modes such as taxicab, car pooling or hired buses which are not shared by strangers without private arrangement.Public transport modes include buses, trolleybuses, trams...

    . There are two bus systems: the traditional system and the Metrobús. The traditional system runs a variety of bus types, operated by several companies on normal streets and avenues:
    • Autobus; large buses.
    • Camioneta; medium size buses.
    • microbus or camionetica; vans or minivans.
  • IFE
    Instituto Autónomo de Ferrocarriles del Estado
    The Instituto de Ferrocariles del Estado is a state-run organization of Venezuela that manages the railway systems of the country...

    ; train services to and from Tuy Valley cities of Charallave and Cúa.
  • Simón Bolívar International Airport
    Simón Bolívar International Airport (Venezuela)
    Simón Bolívar International Airport of Maiquetia is an international airport located in Maiquetía, Venezuela, about 13 miles from downtown Caracas....

    , the biggest and most important in the country is located outside the city, roughly 20 miles (32.2 km) from the downtown area.
  • Caracas Aerial Tramway
    Caracas Aerial Tramway
    The aerial tramway of the city of Caracas, Venezuela, was inaugurated on April 19, 1952 by the then president of Venezuela, General Marcos Pérez Jiménez. It remained open until the end of the 1970s but then a series of closures saw fruitless attempts to reopen it in 1986, 1988 and 1990...

  • In March 2009 four of the five Caracas districts launched Plan Vía Libre to reduce traffic (the pro-Chavez Jorge Rodríguez
    Jorge Rodríguez (politician)
    Dr. Jorge Rodríguez Gómez is a Venezuelan politician and psychiatrist who was Vice President of Venezuela from January 2007 to January 2008. He is currently the Mayor of the Libertador Municipality in Caracas....

    ' Libertador District
    Libertador Municipality (Venezuelan Capital District)
    The Libertador Bolivarian Municipality is the only administrative division of the Venezuelan Capital District and along with the municipalities of Baruta, Chacao, El Hatillo and Sucre forms the Metropolitan District of Caracas. It is located in the western portion of Caracas. It is landlocked by...

     is currently not cooperating as the other districts are in the hands of the opposition). On each weekday, cars with certain number plates are banned from entering key parts of the city centre; the numbers rotate so that any particular car is banned one day a week.

International relations



Caracas is twinned
Town twinning
Twin towns and sister cities are two of many terms used to describe the cooperative agreements between towns, cities, and even counties in geographically and politically distinct areas to promote cultural and commercial ties.- Terminology :...

 with:
Asunción
Asunción
Asunción is the capital and largest city of Paraguay.The "Ciudad de Asunción" is an autonomous capital district not part of any department. The metropolitan area, called Gran Asunción, includes the cities of San Lorenzo, Fernando de la Mora, Lambaré, Luque, Mariano Roque Alonso, Ñemby, San...

, Paraguay Bogotá
Bogotá
Bogotá, Distrito Capital , from 1991 to 2000 called Santa Fé de Bogotá, is the capital, and largest city, of Colombia. It is also designated by the national constitution as the capital of the department of Cundinamarca, even though the city of Bogotá now comprises an independent Capital district...

, Colombia Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires is the capital and largest city of Argentina, and the second-largest metropolitan area in South America, after São Paulo. It is located on the western shore of the estuary of the Río de la Plata, on the southeastern coast of the South American continent...

, Argentina Cluj-Napoca
Cluj-Napoca
Cluj-Napoca , commonly known as Cluj, is the fourth most populous city in Romania and the seat of Cluj County in the northwestern part of the country. Geographically, it is roughly equidistant from Bucharest , Budapest and Belgrade...

, Romania Fortaleza
Fortaleza
Fortaleza is the state capital of Ceará, located in Northeastern Brazil. With a population close to 2.5 million , Fortaleza is the 5th largest city in Brazil. It has an area of and one of the highest demographic densities in the country...

, Brazil Guatemala City
Guatemala City
Guatemala City , is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Guatemala and Central America...

, Guatemala Havana
Havana
Havana is the capital city, province, major port, and leading commercial centre of Cuba. The city proper has a population of 2.1 million inhabitants, and it spans a total of — making it the largest city in the Caribbean region, and the most populous...

, Cuba Istanbul
Istanbul
Istanbul , historically known as Byzantium and Constantinople , is the largest city of Turkey. Istanbul metropolitan province had 13.26 million people living in it as of December, 2010, which is 18% of Turkey's population and the 3rd largest metropolitan area in Europe after London and...

, Turkey La Paz
La Paz
Nuestra Señora de La Paz is the administrative capital of Bolivia, as well as the departmental capital of the La Paz Department, and the second largest city in the country after Santa Cruz de la Sierra...

, Bolivia Lisbon
Lisbon
Lisbon is the capital city and largest city of Portugal with a population of 545,245 within its administrative limits on a land area of . The urban area of Lisbon extends beyond the administrative city limits with a population of 3 million on an area of , making it the 9th most populous urban...

, Portugal Madrid
Madrid
Madrid is the capital and largest city of Spain. The population of the city is roughly 3.3 million and the entire population of the Madrid metropolitan area is calculated to be 6.271 million. It is the third largest city in the European Union, after London and Berlin, and its metropolitan...

, Spain Managua
Managua
Managua is the capital city of Nicaragua as well as the department and municipality by the same name. It is the largest city in Nicaragua in terms of population and geographic size. Located on the southwestern shore of Lake Xolotlán or Lake Managua, the city was declared the national capital in...

, Nicaragua Mexico City
Mexico City
Mexico City is the Federal District , capital of Mexico and seat of the federal powers of the Mexican Union. It is a federal entity within Mexico which is not part of any one of the 31 Mexican states but belongs to the federation as a whole...

, Mexico Minsk
Minsk
- Ecological situation :The ecological situation is monitored by Republican Center of Radioactive and Environmental Control .During 2003–2008 the overall weight of contaminants increased from 186,000 to 247,400 tons. The change of gas as industrial fuel to mazut for financial reasons has worsened...

, Belarus
Miami, USA Milan
Milan
Milan is the second-largest city in Italy and the capital city of the region of Lombardy and of the province of Milan. The city proper has a population of about 1.3 million, while its urban area, roughly coinciding with its administrative province and the bordering Province of Monza and Brianza ,...

, Italy Montevideo
Montevideo
Montevideo is the largest city, the capital, and the chief port of Uruguay. The settlement was established in 1726 by Bruno Mauricio de Zabala, as a strategic move amidst a Spanish-Portuguese dispute over the platine region, and as a counter to the Portuguese colony at Colonia del Sacramento...

, Uruguay Moscow
Moscow
Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

, Russia Navi Mumbai
Navi Mumbai
Navi Mumbai is a Planned Satellite City on the west coast of the Indian state of Maharashtra. It was developed in 1972 as a twin city of Mumbai, and is the largest planned city on the planet, with under the jurisdiction of the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation and a total area of . Navi Mumbai...

, India New Orleans, USA Panama City
Panama City
Panama is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Panama. It has a population of 880,691, with a total metro population of 1,272,672, and it is located at the Pacific entrance of the Panama Canal, in the province of the same name. The city is the political and administrative center of the...

, Panama Paris
Paris
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

, France Quezon City
Quezon City
Quezon City is the former capital and the most populous city in the Philippines. Located on the island of Luzon, Quezon City is one of the cities and municipalities that make up Metro Manila, the National Capital Region. The city was named after Manuel L...

, Philippines Ra'anana
Ra'anana
Ra'anana is a city in the heart of the southern Sharon Plain of the Central District of Israel with a population of 68,300, . Ra'anana is bordered by Kfar Sava on the east and Herzliya on the southwest...

, Israel Reykjavik
Reykjavík
Reykjavík is the capital and largest city in Iceland.Its latitude at 64°08' N makes it the world's northernmost capital of a sovereign state. It is located in southwestern Iceland, on the southern shore of Faxaflói Bay...

, Iceland Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro , commonly referred to simply as Rio, is the capital city of the State of Rio de Janeiro, the second largest city of Brazil, and the third largest metropolitan area and agglomeration in South America, boasting approximately 6.3 million people within the city proper, making it the 6th...

, Brazil San José, Costa Rica
San José, Costa Rica
San José is the capital and largest city of Costa Rica. Located in the Central Valley, San José is the seat of national government, the focal point of political and economic activity, and the major transportation hub of this Central American nation.Founded in 1738 by order of Cabildo de León, San...

San Juan, Puerto Rico
San Juan, Puerto Rico
San Juan , officially Municipio de la Ciudad Capital San Juan Bautista , is the capital and most populous municipality in Puerto Rico, an unincorporated territory of the United States. As of the 2010 census, it had a population of 395,326 making it the 46th-largest city under the jurisdiction of...

 San Salvador
San Salvador
The city of San Salvador the capital and largest city of El Salvador, which has been designated a Gamma World City. Its complete name is La Ciudad de Gran San Salvador...

, El Salvador Santa Cruz de Tenerife
Santa Cruz de Tenerife
Santa Cruz de Tenerife is the capital , second-most populous city of the Autonomous Community of the Canary Islands and the 21st largest city in Spain, with a population of 222,417 in 2009...

, Spain Santiago
Santiago, Chile
Santiago , also known as Santiago de Chile, is the capital and largest city of Chile, and the center of its largest conurbation . It is located in the country's central valley, at an elevation of above mean sea level...

, Chile Santo Domingo
Santo Domingo
Santo Domingo, known officially as Santo Domingo de Guzmán, is the capital and largest city in the Dominican Republic. Its metropolitan population was 2,084,852 in 2003, and estimated at 3,294,385 in 2010. The city is located on the Caribbean Sea, at the mouth of the Ozama River...

, Dominican Republic San Francisco, USA São Paulo
São Paulo
São Paulo is the largest city in Brazil, the largest city in the southern hemisphere and South America, and the world's seventh largest city by population. The metropolis is anchor to the São Paulo metropolitan area, ranked as the second-most populous metropolitan area in the Americas and among...

, Brazil Seoul
Seoul
Seoul , officially the Seoul Special City, is the capital and largest metropolis of South Korea. A megacity with a population of over 10 million, it is the largest city proper in the OECD developed world...

, South Korea
  • Shanghai
    Shanghai
    Shanghai is the largest city by population in China and the largest city proper in the world. It is one of the four province-level municipalities in the People's Republic of China, with a total population of over 23 million as of 2010...

    , People's Republic of China Tegucigalpa
    Tegucigalpa
    Tegucigalpa , and commonly referred as Tegus , is the capital of Honduras and seat of government of the Republic, along with its twin sister Comayagüela. Founded on September 29, 1578 by the Spanish, it became the country's capital on October 30, 1880 under President Marco Aurelio Soto...

    , Honduras Tehran
    Tehran
    Tehran , sometimes spelled Teheran, is the capital of Iran and Tehran Province. With an estimated population of 8,429,807; it is also Iran's largest urban area and city, one of the largest cities in Western Asia, and is the world's 19th largest city.In the 20th century, Tehran was subject to...

    , Iran Washington, D.C.
    Washington, D.C.
    Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington, "the District", or simply D.C., is the capital of the United States. On July 16, 1790, the United States Congress approved the creation of a permanent national capital as permitted by the U.S. Constitution....

    , USA Vigo
    Vigo
    Vigo is a city and municipality in north-west Spain, in Galicia, situated on the ria of the same name on the Atlantic Ocean.-Population:...

    , Spain

See also


  • 1967 Caracas earthquake
    1967 Caracas earthquake
    The 1967 Caracas earthquake occurred on 29 July 1967 at 20:00 local time, and was centered near the coast about 30 miles west of Caracas, capital of Venezuela with a magnitude of 6.5. When the earth stopped shaking, about 240 inhabitants were dead and hundreds injured and buried in the rubble where...

  • Large Cities Climate Leadership Group
    Large Cities Climate Leadership Group
    The Large Cities Climate Leadership Group, now officially known as the C40 is a group of cities working to reduce urban carbon emissions and to adapt to climate change. It believes it has an important role to play as cities contain around 50% of the world population, consume 75% of the world's...


External links