by Borderstan.com March 18, 2010 at 5:00 am 1,604 2 Comments

Congrats to the two commenters who figured out that the two mystery photographs from Tuesday and Wednesday were of Caracas, Venezuela. The coastline shot is of the approach to Simón Bolívar International Airport, arriving from the north over the Caribbean Sea. (A third reader pointed out that the coastline shot is of the small city of Mamo.) The second photo, from Wednesday, is of the hillside shot is of Baruta, one of the four municipalities that compose Caracas–about 7 miles on the other side of the coastal mountain range.

Caracas is, in my view, the Los Angeles of South America; that is how it looks and feels. From a governing standpoint, I compare it to New York City. It’s four municipalities can be compared to New York’s five boroughs. As for Baruta in the photo? I would say it is either Queens or Brooklyn. Of course, neither of them have hillsides and lush vegetation.

The residents? They are called Caraqueños.

by Borderstan.com September 22, 2009 at 5:10 am 2,564 2 Comments

El Avila Mountain separates the Venezuelan capital of Caracas from the Caribbean, just 17 miles on the other side.

El Avila Mountain separates the Venezuelan capital of Caracas from the Caribbean Sea, just 8 miles away by car on the other side.

This view of Caracas, and the lush green of the hillsides, is one of those things you have to experience in person. It is impossible to understand how magnificent a view it is through a photo.

One of Luis’ friends in Caracas took this photo from her office window. The mountain in the background is El Avila, which has an almost magical quality for Caraquenos, the term of Caracas residents. On the other side of El Avila–and about 8 miles from downtown Caracas–is the Caribbean Sea and of great beaches.

The city sprawls for miles through the Caracas Valley and onto the hillsides. There are wealthy neighborhoods, large middle-class enclaves and poor neighborhoods–in close proximity. The city’s development, whether private or public, is fueled by Venezuela’s immense oil revenues.

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