Top Things To Do In Caracas


Caracas is a bustling capital city with plenty of cultural activities, great food, entertaining nightlife and nearby natural attractions. Like all of Venezuela, Caracas has areas that are safe and enjoyable for tourists and locals, and zones which are dangerous and should be avoided. Security has improved in recent years, although situations can change quickly, and everyone should take basic precautions and ask locals for advice.
Here are some of the main activities and attractions if you chose to visit Caracas.

Teleferico Caracas Warairarepano

The Caracas cable car is called Warairarepano, one of the original indigenous names for Mount Avila. It offers a fantastic view across the city on one side, and the ocean and the Galipan mountain village on the other. You can buy food and drinks from various stalls. The iconic Humboldt Hotel is also at the summit, although you can’t access it unless you are a guest.
The cable car spans 3.5 kilometers and takes about 20 minutes to reach the summit at around 2100 meters above sea level. There are several walking trails that start and end at the summit. The original cable car was built in 1955. It has since been replaced, although you can still see the old towers. The system has been upgraded several times, most recently in 2022. There were plans to build another line down the other side of the mountain, although these have been stalled for many years.
Prices: Unfortunately the teleferico has very different prices for locals and visitors. As of 2023, Venezuelan residents pay $12, while tourists must pay $30. If you are on a budget, there are other ways to get a good view. You can simply walk up Mount Avila on one of many nature trails and enjoy spectacular vistas across Caracas. You can also get to the top by Jeep, with 4×4 vehicles leaving from the cable car station, and also going to Galipan village (see below).

How to get to the Teleferico: Start from the Mariperez station. The entrance isn’t easy to reach on foot. It’s best to take a taxi using an app such as Ridery or Yummy Rides.  Map:

Opening times as of 2023: Thursday and Friday – 12:00 to 17:00. Saturday and Sunday – 10:00 to 18:00. Closed Monday to Wednesday. Check their Instagram for last minute changes:

Sabas Nieves – Mount Avila Trail

One of the most popular activities for Caraqueños is climbing the trails up Mount Avila. There are many trails which are easy to reach from the center of the city. The most popular, safest and best equipped is Sabas Nieves, which is near the central districts of Chacao and Alta Mira. On weekend vendors sell snacks at the entrance.
It’s a steep but rewarding climb which takes between 30 minutes to 1.5 hours depending on your fitness and speed. Some eager fitness fans can run up the trail in 20 minutes. There is a free open air gym at the base, and another at the top with basic equipment. There are several different paths, but it’s best to stick to the main one.
There are also trails leading further up the mountain, and off to several waterfalls. Some of these trails are considered dangerous, with robberies reported especially at dusk. If you want to see the waterfalls best to go with a local, or at busy times during the middle of the day.
When to go: The trail is open from dawn to dusk, with park guards at the entrance who check bags.

How to get to Sabas Nieves: You can take a taxi, or walk up from the Chacao metro station (this will add several more kilometres to your hike – and burn through more calories!).


San agustin Cumbe Tours

San Agustin is a colorful barrio in the center of Caracas. The formerly dangerous slum has been transformed into a more liveable district through the efforts of a community-led campaign called 100% San Agustin, which celebrates the music and creativity of the residents.

At least once a month, a group of local musicians lead visitors on an exuberant walking tour of San Agustin. The Cumbe Tour marching band plays traditional music as it walks between various bars, stopping along the way for drinking, dancing and story-telling. Several drinks and snacks are included in the ticket price. The tour ends with a concert in the street.

Cumbe Tours announces their upcoming dates on Instagram:

Street Food – Cachapas and Golfeados

Caracas has lots of great food to try. Many street stalls sell specialties at all hours of the day and night. You can’t leave Caracas without trying a cachapa, a huge delicious pancake-style fritter made with fresh creamed corn, grilled on a hotplate, and served with huge slabs of cheese and meats. The most famous are found at Doña Agapita in the Candelaria district. The restaurant El Solar del Este also offers fantastic cachapas, along with many other specialties such as arepa rellena, or arepas stuffed with ingredients.
Golfeados are the best sweet treat to try. They’re a type of cinnamon scroll drenched in treacle, spiced with anis and topped with cheese – a salty-sweet combo that’s to die for. There are several golfeado stores along Sabana Grande, the main shopping street. Golfeao de Petare claims to be the home of the original golfeado (originally called a golfeao).

Galipan Village

Galipan is the mountaintop village just over the ridge from the Humboldt Hotel. It’s famous for its many restaurants, which Caracas residents flock to on weekends to enjoy lunch with a great view. The restaurants look down the mountain on to the coast, with incredible vistas of the sea below. Clouds sometimes block the view, but the weather usually moves quickly. You can wander along the few village streets and select from one of the many restaurants. They mostly offer parrilla grills overloaded with different meats, huge cheese-filled cachapas, and other traditional Venezuelan dishes. The popular drink is a sweet red wine. Galipan has lots of posadas or guesthouses where you can spend the night if you want to extend your visit.
From Caracas, you can get to Galipan in the back of a shared 4×4 or jeep. The vehicles usually wait until they fill up with passengers. The same vehicles can take you to the Humboldt teleferico station. They leave from the start of the Via Galipan, entrance Cotiza, near the district San Bernardino. You can find the departure point by searching on Google Maps: G3CR+XW3, Caracas 1010, Distrito Capital,
  • Operating hours (2023): Monday to Friday 7am-5pm, Saturday-Sunday 7am-7pm
  • Prices (2023): Galipan: $6, Humboldt: $8.
  • Instagram:
  • Whatsapp: +584127041209

Plaza Bolivar

The historic heart of Caracas is Plaza Bolivar. Like all town squares in Venezuela, it features a statue of the national hero Simon Bolivar. The nearby street shaded with red umbrellas offers an ideal photo opportunity.

Around the Plaza Bolivar are several historic and important buildings, including the Caracas cathedral, municipal and federal government buildings, and the Museo Bolivar. The Casa Natal de Simon Bolivar is a museum dedicated to the independence founder which preserves his personal objects, documents and works of art. 


Chacao Market

For a local shopping experience, head to the Chacao market. It’s one of several municipal indoor markets. You can buy tropical fruit and vegetables, prepared snacks, fruit juices and handicrafts. It’s a lively place where you can interact with locals while buying affordable food.

El Parque del Este

This central park officially named after General Francisco de Miranda offers a nice place for a stroll, with lakes, fountains and gardens. There are many people exercising, with free group classes on weekends. There is a small open air zoo with jaguars, crocodiles, monkeys, anteaters and flamingos. An interesting project underway in the park is the Buque Leander, a reconstruction of a historic ship.

Petare Historic Centre

This is one of the oldest districts in Caracas, where you can appreciate the contrast between the colonial and the modern. It has a 17th century church, a folk art museum, a street market and a lively nightlife. It’s also where you’ll find a simple cafe which has revived the art of baking golfeados, a sweet sticky bun topped with cheese.
The historic centre sits at the base of the much larger district of Petare, which is better know as one of the biggest and most dangerous slums or barrios in Venezuela. The historic area is safe to visit during the day if you take precautions. But it’s best to avoid the barrio nearby unless you are with a local or guide.

Botanical Gardens

If you want to admire the plant diversity of Venezuela, the Botanical Garden of Caracas has more than 70 hectares with more than 2000 species of native and exotic plants. Here you can see everything from orchids to cactus, palms and bonsais.

The National Pantheon

This mausoleum houses the remains of Simon Bolivar and other national independence heroes. The building is an impressive architectural work combining an old church and a modern curved structure.

Paseo Los Próceres

This central park is a nice place for an evening stroll. It is brightly lit and is next to an army base, ensuring it is usually safe. The nearby parade grounds are used for military processions.

Picture of Joel Dullroy

Joel Dullroy

Joel is a journalist and videographer who has visited Venezuela frequently since 2022.