Isla Margarita hotels
Eye-opening Isla de Margarita
Like Venezuela’s budding beauty pageant contestants, Isla de Margarita is generically beautiful, radiant and with just a hint of edge. Crammed with hordes of equally stunning beauties lining its world-class beaches and doused in more history and culture than any Miss World competitor would know what to do with, this Venezuelan island never fails to find itself on the list of travel must-dos.
For starters, Isla de Margarita’s beaches are everywhere. Check out Playa El Yaque if you want to windsurf, Playa De Pampatar for a cool dip and Playa El Cardon for a private tan session. Culture-wise, Isla de Margarita offers the Francisco Narvaez Contemporary Art Museum, the history-laden area of Juan Griego and San Nicolas de Bari Church. So maybe it is possible to be both beautiful and insightful…
Isla de Margarita’s Top 10
10. Tacarigua The perfect place to bag a traditional souvenir or eight.
5. Playa Parguito A surfer’s dream, there’s plenty of waves to go around at this popular beach.
9. La Restinga National Park Keep your camera ready for the flamingos and parakeets while cruising down the river.
4. Porlamar Plenty of shopping to be had and plenty of money to be spent, whether you’re after leather shoes or quality Cubans.
8. Virgen del Valle Church This peach and white church is as divine on the inside as it is on the outside.
3. Fortin de la Galera This 18th century fort has an in-built museum and one of the best views in town.
7. Kamy Beach Where the glitziest locals come for a dance and plenty of margarita-fuelled fun.
2. Los Roques The Eden of national parks is littered with fairy tale beaches and colourful coral reefs.
6. Isla de Coche A quick island hop will take you to this charming little fishing town, famous for its seafood.
1. Playa El Agua Make sure to faux-tan beforehand so you don’t glow amongst the sexy, sun-kissed locals at this party beach.
Isla de Margarita History
- El Valle del Espiritu Santo – The site of the first capital, and church was created in 1529.
- Plaza Bolivar – A plaza dedicated to Bolivar, who liberated Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela and Bolivia.
- Porlamar Lighthouse – The most impressive historical landmark, this offers dramatic views.
- Castillo San Carlos de Borromeo – The largest fort on Isla de Margarita was finished in 1684 and used to protect the original port.
- El Fortin de la Caranta – A fort that contains original Spanish canons and provides panoramic views of Porlamar city.
Isla de Margarita Art & Culture
- El Yaque – A fishing village with a beach that displays the traditional life of the natives.
- Fuentidueno – Town surrounded by coconut plantations, visit to learn about coconut farming.
- Museo Francisco Narvaez – Built in 1979, this contains an art exhibition of a local historical artist, Francisco Narvaez.
- Biblioteca Y Museo – Housed in a colonial house, this contains many pre-Columbian artifacts.
- Museu Nueva Cadiz – A museum that contains religious sculptures, antique diving gear and a range of other historical items from Isla de Margarita.
Isla de Margarita Shopping
- Mercado de Conejeros – Great destination for shoppers, as there are hundreds of small stores to browse.
- 4 de Mayo – The main avenue in Isla de Maragarita contains the most expensive stores with imported items from around the world.
- Guevara’s Boulevard – Contains many stores that offer a lot of goods at reasonable prices.
- El Cercado – Stop into this town to purchase traditional handicrafts.
- Tacarigua – Browse through the traditional handicraft stalls that line the paved road in Isla de Margarita.
Gay & Lesbian Isla de Margarita
- Kamy Beach – The most happening nightlife scene in Isla de Margarita.
- Senor Frog's – The popular Mexican chain has a bar and restaurant that turns into a dance club after 11pm.
- Guayoyo Café – A mellow bar this is located on a steep cliff that overlooks the ocean.
- Laguna Mar – A hotel that also offers casino games and gambling.
- Hard Rock Café – Located in Sambil Mall, this is frequented by many Americans.
Isla de Margarita Outdoor
- Restinga Lagoon National Park – Take a boat through the mangroves of this tiny harbor which serves as a bird refuge.
- Las Marites Lagoon – A refuge for marine birds, this is a great spot for bird watchers or photographers.
- Romulo Gallego’s Pathway – A walk along the sea that offers lovely views that begins in Old Market.
- Cueva del Bufon – A cave that overlooks the sea, this was used by smugglers to hide treasure in Isla de Margarita.
- Parque Nacional Cerro el Copey – A national park that encompasses the tallest hill on the island.
Isla de Margarita Sport
- Go windsurfing, sailing or water skiing along the Porlamar’s Marina Concorde.
- Enjoy the view under the sea by scuba diving or snorkelling at la Capitania Beach.
- Hike the trail at Punta Ballena for beautiful views of the Caribbean horizon.
- Spend the day swimming at one of the many beaches on Isla de Margarita, such as Playa el Tirano or Playa Manzanillo.
- Surf at the specific beaches with the best waves, such as Playa Parguita.
Isla de Margarita Events
Playa de Agua’s promenade fills with sparkles, sequins and sexy outfits in February for Carnivale.
Don your raunchiest rags and hydrate with equally extravagant cocktails at Margarita Island Salsa Festival in June.
June sees the Battle of Carabobo marked with a rowdy, celebratory parade filled with colour and plenty of live music and dance.
When To Go
- This island is hot all year round, even in winter. Summer temperatures can soar above 32ºC (90ºF), while winter sticks around the 25ºC (77ºF) mark.
- While the island doesn’t see too much rain, it does happen occasionally. Bypass the odd shower or two by avoiding a trip in December.
- If you’re worried about the notoriously rough Caribbean hurricanes, don’t be. This sunny island sits outside the hurricane belt.
- Taxis are cheap, making them a good way to explore. Just make sure to grab a licensed one – legit cabs are white and have yellow plates.
- Hiring a car is probably the most convenient option, and petrol is cheap as chips. But take care on the roads as many of the locals don’t care about the rules.
- Buses and mini-buses are decent, but often run late and have limited stops.
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