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WorldCaribbeanSouth AmericaMiddle AmericaLesser AntillesVenezuela

An online cruising guide for yachts sailing to Venezuela.

Capital Caracas
Language Spanish
Currency Bolivar
Time zone VET (UTC–4
Calling code +58

Description of the country...

General cruising/sailing notes?


Chart Number - Chart Name
Chart Number - Chart Name
Chart Number - Chart Name


Give local weather conditions or refer to another page (a region or island group) that covers these conditions.

Venezuela is NOT in the Hurricane Zone.

Weather links


List popular passages/routes, timing, etc.


Key to symbols: |Island icon – island |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |Needs data icon – needs data ||
  • Margarita Margarita /wiki/Margarita Island icon – island |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Los Testigos Los Testigos /wiki/Los_Testigos Island icon – island |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Los Rogues Los Rogues /wiki/Los_Rogues Island icon – island |Needs data icon – needs data |


Add here VHF channel for coastguard, harbor masters. etc.

Also see World Cruiser's Nets


Add any navigation notes such approaches, dangers etc here. If this section does not apply remove it.


On arrival in Venezuela, clearing in must be done in the following sequence: (1)Customs, (2)Immigration, (3)Port Captain. Requirements:

  • Ship's papers
  • Crew list (with passport details)
  • Clearance form from previous port.

A cruising permit will then be issued.

Customs and Immigration


  • Firearms and ammunition MUST be declared on arrival
  • Animals must have both a valid health certificate AND valid anti-rabies innoculation certificate. Rabies is widespread in the country.

Foreign vessels can stay in Venezuela for 18 months, but crews (including the skipper) can stay for only 90 days. This can be extended by some agents (marinas) at a price.




An advance visa is not required for citizens from MOST countries (confirm with Venezuelan Embassies/Consuls) as these issues are dealt with on arrival. ALWAYS carry a certified copy of your passport when ashore as you will be asked to show this at the many police checks.

Health and Security


  • Precautions and prophylaxis against Malaria is HIGHLY recommended
  • Yellow Fever vaccination is required before visiting. Proof is required by many countries on arrival after you have visited Venezuela.
  • Bilharzia is common so avoid swimming in the rivers.


The number of thefts, muggings and attacks with knifes or guns reported by visiting sailors has increased during 2008. Margarita and Cumaná seem to be particularly bad areas. Outboard engines and items on deck should be secured and if possibly the dinghy should be lifted out of the water. Also corruption within the government forces (Customs, National Guard, Harbourmasters) is rampant, so expect to pay handsomely to get your affairs resolved. Any anomaly will be sufficient cause to be requested copious amounts of money, otherwise you will be grounded. In 2010 a yacht had been in La Guaira port for 6 months while things were checked.

  • 10 November 2008. The sailing vessel Chill was attacked by pirates while at anchor at Isla Borracha near Puerto La Cruz. Chill and another sailboat had departed Puerto La Cruz from Bahía Redonda Marina headed west and had stopped at Isla Corracha for the night. A piñero with 3 men aboard approached the two anchored yachts asking for water. When one of the crew came back up from below with water, they shot one cruiser and wounded another.
  • 19 August 2008. An assault and robbery of a single-handed yachtsman was reported in Pampatar, Margarita. (The Port Captain in Pampatar closed the port to anchored yachts several years ago, to allow space for the local fishing fleet.)
  • August 2008. A dingy and engine were stolen from a visiting cruiser in Porlamar, Margarita Island.
  • 9 July 2008. A sailboat was boarded in Porlamar. Only a young female crew member and a baby were on board at the time. The woman was blind folded with a towel over her head and tied up with duct tape. The intruder went through the boat and was looking for money. He left the boat after 30 minutes.
  • 7 July 2008. Three burglaries or attempted burglaries were reported by cruisers in Porlamar, Margarita Island. Boats were boarded at night. There were approximately 70 boats at anchorage.
  • 5 July 2008. The yacht "Raven Eye" was attacked after leaving Puerto Santos. A pirogue with 6 men aboard approached the boat (whilst they were underway). One man was in military uniform. The men boarded "Raven Eye", shooting and stabbing the family dog. The pirates took US$300, a laptop computer, tool boxes, the SSB radio, outboard motor, ripped the microphones from the VHF, ripped the compass out, tried to take the radar and forward looking sonar but they were fixed too well, and left the boat a complete mess.
  • 1 July 2008. The sailing yacht "Naxos" was boarded by six armed pirates NNE of Cacao off the northern coast of Venezuela (10 46.41N 62 16.80W). None of the three crew aboard the yacht were physically injured during the encounter, however, the yacht was ransacked and everything of any value was stolen. The pirates took cash, jewelery, computers, radios, satellite phone, cell phones, EPIRB, outboard motor, AC unit, food, clothing, bedding and other items. "Naxos" was approached from behind by a very fast pirogue-type open fishing boat. Although the boat was not far from a harbour, the attackers came alongside and asked for water. When the captain of "Naxos" attempted to pass a water container to them, he was immediately facing 6 guns (5 x 9mm automatic pistols and 1 x semi automatic rifle).
  • July 2008. Four dinghies were reported stolen over a two week period in Porlamar, Margarita Island. Boats were being boarded either when crew are aboard or away from the boat.
  • July 2008. Three armed men entered the Marina at Porlamar, Margarita Island in mid-afternoon. A local policeman approached them and was shot. A gun battle ensured with some of the armed men being arrested or shot.
  • June 28, 2008. Five armed men boarded a sailboat at Pampatar. The owner was tied up for 2 hrs while they went through his boat and took all the valuables. There was only one boat in this anchorage. (The Port Captain in Pampatar closed the port to anchored yachts several years ago, to allow space for the local fishing fleet.)
  • 29 April 2008. Yacht Moon Goddess was boarded while anchored at night at Puerto Santos just four miles east of the port of Carupano. The intruders left when the owners (locked below) fired flares.
  • 12 January 2008. American Nomad was boarded by three pirates in Porlamar, Margarita. One armed with a shotgun and two armed with pistols. Money and electronics were taken.
  • 26 January 2008. Five armed men attacked a sailboat on Islas Los Testigos. The boat was anchored in a bay with only one other boat. Armed with a flaregun the skipper tried to scare off the boarders. He was shot twice once in the stomach and once in the back. The pirates left.



Key to symbols: |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |Needs data icon – needs data ||
  • Carupano Carupano /wiki/Carupano Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Cumana (Puerto Sucre)Cumana (Puerto Sucre)/wiki/Cumana Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Cariaco Cariaco /wiki/Cariaco Harbour icon – harbour |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Puerto La Cruz Puerto La Cruz /wiki/Puerto_La_Cruz Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |
  • Puerto Cabello Puerto Cabello /wiki/Puerto_Cabello Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • La Guaira & CaraballedaLa Guaira & Caraballeda/wiki/La_Guaira Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Carenero Carenero /wiki/Carenero Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |Needs data icon – needs data |


List transportation (local and/or international.)


Contact details of "Cruiser's Friends" that can be contacted for local information or assistance.


List links to discussion threads on partnering forums. (see link for requirements)



Books, Guides, etc. Use the Reference template or not at your discretion. For example:

{{Reference|Rod Heikel|Greek Waters Pilot|Imray|Laurie and Wilson, Cambridgeshire (2010)|9780852889718}}, expands to
Rod Heikell, Greek Waters Pilot, Imray Laurie and Wilson, Cambridgeshire (2010), ISBN 9780852889718
  • Author, Title, Publisher, ISBN ISBN number
  • Author, Title, Publisher, ISBN ISBN number

You may want to remove the above entries and use instead a link to the Country or Region that lists the relevant references. If so enter, after removing {{MagentaText|xx}}, the following:

See [[Country or Region#References_&_Publications|Coutry or Region]].

If you do not use the above link, please remove it.


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