Sometimes some of the best vacation experiences can be had in places that are not the most mainstream of vacation destinations. A prime example of this is the nation of Venezuela. Venezuela offers incredible scenery, friendly people, great shopping experiences, wonderful cuisine, and many fun attractions. Another thing that the country offers though is the chance to observe and participate in some of the many festivals and celebrations that the country observes. In fact, one of the best ways of all to experience the true culture of Venezuela, and have a lot of fun at the very same time, is to visit the country during one of their celebrations. Doing this is easy too, as Venezuelans seem to enjoy celebrating all year long.
Visit Venezuela with Travelocity
The beautiful country of Venezuela can be experienced at reasonable prices with Travelocity. Travelers can combine packages of hotel and flight for additional discounts. Find and use available travelocity coupon codes to get the best rates. These codes have expiration dates and can be used to get the best rates possible.
January – Paradura del Nino
Venezuela celebrates the Catholic feast of the Epiphany with the Parade of Children, or Paradura del Nino. This festival is very popular with children as it involves them getting gifts just for them that they believe are actually from the three kings that visited the baby Jesus shortly after his birth in the manger in Bethlehem. The communities are decorated for this special holiday and there are celebrations in town squares and downtown areas too.
February – Mardi Gras and the Burial of the Sardine
Like most Spanish countries, especially in the Western Hemisphere, Mardi Gras is one of the more popular and well remembered festivals in the culture. Mardi Gras in Venezuela is held immediately before the holy period of Lent and is a fascinating thing to be a part of. There are brightly colored costumes, masked dancers and parade participants, and a sometimes wild celebration being held in most public areas. After the Mardi Gras celebration is complete, all of Venezuela celebrates the Burial of the Sardine which signifies the beginning of Lent.
March – The Drums of Barlovento
The Drums of Barlovento is a historical celebration featuring local musicians dressed in tribal and historic dress as they play traditional music from the past. The festival signifies the beginning of the rainy season and is tied to the agricultural industry.
April – Holy Week
Like most other nations that are predominantly Catholic, the residents of Venezuela celebrate Holy Week rather intensely. The celebration begins on Palm Sunday and lasts for one week until Easter Sunday. This is a time when many people in Venezuela leave their home areas and vacation in the mountains, at the beach, and in other places that they normally don’t get a chance to go to.
May – Velorio de la Cruz de Mayo
Velorio de la Cruz de Mayo, or the Cross of May, is a religious celebration held on the third of the month in the capital city of Caracas. This is a unique and very interesting festival that includes beautiful decorations and a number of different ceremonies. Viewing the performances included in Velorio de la Cruz de Mayo gives visitors a new understanding of the culture of the people of Venezuela.
June – Feast of John the Baptist
One of the most popular and lively festivals in Venezuela is the Feast of John the Baptist. This festival lasts all month long and includes colorful costumes, public dancing, and ceremonial rituals. The drum beats of the celebration can be heard all around the city of Caracas and the surrounding area. The Feast of John the Baptist, as it is celebrated in Venezuela, is completely unique when compared to other neighboring Caribbean and South American nations.
July – Virgin of El Carmen Day
Travelers visiting Venezuela can really experience an interesting side of the country if they time their vacation to coincide with Virgin of El Carmen Day. The celebrations surrounding Virgin of El Carment Day are primarily held in the Venezuelan state of Vargas and involve catholic masses, parades, dances, and other public performances.
September – Fiesta de la Virgen de Coromoto
The Fiesta de la Virgen de Coromoto is held on September 8th in Guanare. This festival is signified with a number of public parades and performances. There are colorful decorations and the locals break out into the street at all hours of the day to participate in the goings on. The Fiesta de la Virgen de Coromoto celebrates the Virgin Mary specifically, and therefore is treated as one of the more sacred festivals of the year.
October – El Hatillo Music Festival
One of the most popular music festivals in the region is the El Hatillo Music Festival. This celebration is held just south of Caracas and draws musicians, dancers, and spectators from far and wide. The level of ability is very high from the standpoint of the musicians that play there, and a visitor or local usually has no problem finding a style of music that they are a fan of. There are a number of music styles played at the El Hatillo Music Festival including traditional, folk, rock, and jazz.
November – Fair of the Chinese
Held in Maracaibo, the Fair of the Chinese is one of the most unique festivals in the entire nation of Venezuela. This fair honors and celebrates the Chinese people that have come to the country and the culture that they brought with them.
December – The Feast of San Benito
There are a number of celebrations held throughout the nation of Venezuela around the Christmas holiday, but one of the most looked forward to is the Feast of San Benito. Local musicians perform publicly and the streets come alive during the week following Christmas and right up to New Year’s Day. This is one of the more wild and exciting festivals of the Venezuelan calendar, and travelers usually report this to be one of the most fun times they have had in the country.
Experiencing the culture of Venezuela is something that most travelers will end up remembering for the rest of their lives. The country is beautiful and interesting on any day of the year, but when visiting during one of the big festivals, the nation comes alive with brilliant colors and incredible music. Feasting and public celebrations are important in the Venezuelan culture, and the people are very warm and welcoming to those from outside the area. There is no better way to experience Venezuela than to do so during one of the many festivals that are celebrated there all year long.