Guyana

Guyana

Things to do - general

Guyana is a paradise for nature lovers, adventure seekers, and the Eco-tourist alike. They boast an irresistible combination of fascinating and breathtaking natural beauty; pristine Amazonian rainforests; immense waterfalls;, amazing wildlife; blended with a vibrant indigenous culture, rich heritage and the most hospitable and friendly people in the world.
The country can be divided into four natural regions: a narrow and fertile marshy plain along the Atlantic coast (low coastal plain) where most of the population lives; a white sand belt more inland (hilly sand and clay region), containing most of Guyana’s mineral deposits; the dense rain forests (forested highland region) in the middle of the country; the grassy flat savanna in the south; and the larger interior highlands interior savannah) consisting mostly of mountains that gradually rise to the Brazilian border.

The four longest rivers are the Essequibo at 1,010 kilometres (628 mi) long, the Courantyne River at 724 kilometres (450 mi), the Berbiceat 595 kilometres (370 mi), and the Demerara at 346 kilometres (215 mi). The Corentyne river forms the border with Suriname. At the mouth of the Essequibo are several large islands, including the 145 km (90 mi) wide Shell Beach along the northwest coast, which is also a major breeding area for sea turtles (mainly Leatherbacks) and other wildlife.

The local climate is tropical and generally hot and humid, though moderated by northeast trade winds along the coast. There are two rainy seasons, the first from May to mid-August, the second from mid-November to mid-January.

Guyana has one of the largest unspoiled rainforests in South America, some parts of which are almost inaccessible by humans. The rich natural history of Guyana was described by early explorers Sir Walter Raleigh and Charles Waterton and later by naturalists Sir David Attenborough and Gerald Durrell. In 2008, the BBC ran a three-part programme called Lost Land of the Jaguar which highlighted the huge diversity of wildlife, including undiscovered species and rare species such as the giant otter and harpy eagle.

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Country Guyana
Population735,554
Visa requirements

No Visa Required

Languages spokenEnglish
Currency usedGuyanese Dollar ( GYD) $1 USD - $207.21 GYD
Area (km2)214,970 km² / 83,000 sq mi

Culture info

Guyana's culture is very similar to that of the English-speaking Caribbean, and has historically been tied to the English-speaking Caribbean as part of the British Empire when it became a possession in the nineteenth century. Guyana is a founding member of the Caricom (Caribbean Community) economic bloc and also the home of the Bloc's Headquarters, the CARICOM Secretariat.

Guyana's geographical location, its sparsely populated rain-forest regions, and its substantial Amerindian population differentiate it from English-speaking Caribbean countries. Its blend of Indo-Guyanese (East Indian) and Afro-Guyanese (African) cultures gives it similarities to Trinidad and distinguishes it from other parts of the Americas. Guyana shares similar interests with the islands in the West Indies, such as food, festive events, music, sports, etc.

Guyana plays international cricket as a part of the West Indies cricket team, and the Guyana team plays first-class cricket against other nations of the Caribbean. In March and April 2007 Guyana co-hosted the Cricket World Cup 2007. In addition to its CARICOM membership, Guyana is a member of CONCACAF, the international football federation for North and Central America and the Caribbean.

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History

There are nine indigenous tribes residing in Guyana: the Wai Wai, Machushi, Patamona, Arawak, Carib, Wapishana, Arecuna, Akawaio, and Warrau. Historically the Arawak and Carib tribes dominated Guyana. Although Christopher Columbus sighted Guyana during his third voyage (in 1498), the Dutch were the first to establish colonies: Essequibo (1616), Berbice (1627), and Demerara (1752). After the British assumed control in 1796, the Dutch formally ceded the area in 1814. In 1831 the three separate colonies became a single British colony known as British Guiana.

Since Independence in 1824, Venezuela has claimed the area of land to the west of the Essequibo River. Simon Bolivar wrote to the British government warning against the Berbice and Demerara settlers settling on land which the Venezuelans claimed was theirs. In 1899 an international tribunal ruled the land belonged to Great Britain. The border disputes persist and no final settlement has been reached

Guyana achieved independence from the United Kingdom on 26 May 1966 and became a republic on 23 February 1970, remaining a member of the Commonwealth.

Things To Do

Kaieteur Falls

Photo by Guyana Tourism Board

Kaieteur WatterFalls Is a sight to see, 30,000 gallons of water per second flowing over a 250m (820ft) cliff in the middle of a misty, ancient jungle.
The brave can even stand at the top of the falls and gaze over the precipice. Depending on the season, the falls are from 76m (250ft) to 122m (400ft) wide. On the walk to the falls look for outrageously showy, scarlet cock-of-the-rock birds. Other creatures found in the park around the falls include the tiny golden frog, (providers of dart poison for the local indigenous peoples) and the rare bush dog


Shell Beach

Photo by Guyana Tourism Board

This 90 mile stretch of relatively uninhabited coastline is known mainly as a nesting ground for four species of endangered marine turtles which come to nest here annually.
The area itself however, is a unique ecosystem encompassing mangrove forests, inland swamp forests and savannahs and bordered by the Atlantic seaboard where mud-flats front the shore in some areas. The area is also known to posses giant river turtles as well as tortoises, along with manatees, tapirs, deer, jaguars, howler monkeys and other large animals.


Orinduik Falls

Photo by Ian Mckenzie / CC License

One of Guyana’s hidden jewels, Orinduik Falls is a gorgeous cascade that will leave your jaw hanging. It’s also a wonderfully tucked away place to swim in a natural Jacuzzi at the foot of a sparkling waterfall, surrounded by lush rainforest. Not to be missed.


The Amazon Rain Forest

Photo by Guyana Tourism Board

Guyana, being 80% Amazon Rain-Forest, provides an amazing trekking experience. The Amazon Rain-Forest is the worlds richest in Fauna (Animals) and Flora (Plants). The rugged mountains and wild tropical rain-forest are filled with numerous trails which the indigenous people use to get to their farms. It is filled with amazing sights and sounds.


Rapunini Savannah

Photo by David Morimoto / CC License

The old west. Many people picture it with gun slingers and horseback riders, but you can visit the old west today at the Rapunini Savannahs. Rodeos, cattle rustlers and jaguars stalking cattle, where cowboys still do everything by man and horse power. In short the Savannahs of the Rupununi are a vast wilderness where Amerindian cowboys, called Vaqueros, roam the plains as they have done so in ages past.


Sport Fishing

Guyana, the " Land of Many waters ", is filled with rivers teaming with fishes. Guyana’s rivers are vastly untouched and prime for fishing. There are over 1800 species of fish including the Arowana, Payara, Himara. Peacock Bass and Pirahna.


Annual Rodeo

No safety measures, no tricks, real wild horses & cattle that are rounded up straight out of the Rupunini wilderness! Undoubtedly one of the most authentic rodeos left in this world. This 3 day festival is something you will always remember. The Rodeo is held each year over the Easter holidays.