Magnificent and virtually untouched, Guyana which lies on South America’s northern coast is still culturally linked to the Caribbean through a large population that embraces its West Indian roots. The destination was also a British colony and remains the only South American nation where English is the official language. The country forms a green and verdant triangle between three major rivers: the Orinoco, the Amazon and the Negro. Four other large rivers cut through its coastal plain, feeding the Atlantic.
Guyana offers stunning flat-topped mountains, known locally as tepuis, dozens of waterfalls, and a zoologist’s dream of tropical wildlife species. While there are many hotels and restaurants in the capital city of Georgetown, the quintessential Guyana holiday is typically spent in a motorized Amerindian dugout canoe exploring the wild rivers and bunking down for the night at an eco lodge with nature close at hand.
Many outfitters based in Georgetown offer tours that can last from four days to two weeks. A typical itinerary will include several stops at Amerindian villages, where day-to-day life remains largely unchanged from several centuries ago. Those with less time can hire a bush pilot to take them to Kaieteur Falls, a magnificent cascade on the Potaro River that boasts a vertical drop more than five times that of Niagara Falls.
Most of Georgetown retains the look of a Colonial-era port town with stately Victorian buildings and storefronts. Tour the city on foot and see the Botanical Gardens featuring a pond that is a favorite hangout for numerous species of tropical waterfowl. Visit St. George’s Cathedral, reputed to be the tallest wooden cathedral in the world. Hibiscus Craft Plaza is a good place to seek out Amerindian handicrafts. The National Gallery of Art is housed in the Castellani House and the National Museum displays native flora and fauna as well as archaeological relics and native crafts. See the kokers, or floodgates, built by early Dutch settlers to keep the city from flooding. The network of canal systems is still used to keep Georgetown dry and the marshland at bay today.
Airports / Gateways / Flying times
Airport: Cheddi Jagan International Airport, Timehri is 25 miles from Georgetown, the capital.
Gateways/Flying Times: There are no direct flights from the UK, however Caribbean Airlines fly via Barbados and Trinidad. Further options via Barbados are also available with LIAT connecting with the British Airways and Virgin Atlantic flights from the UK. London: 8 hours.
Average temperature ranges from between 75-87 degrees F.
Creole, Chinese, Indian and International dishes are available. Dress code is semi casual.
English and Creole
Live music, Karaoke, Disco Bars, Plays at the cultural centres, Comedy nights and poetry slam sessions
City Tours may be arranged for interested groups to visit the Botanical Gardens, Zoological Park, Stabroek Market and other various architectural heritage sites. Day trips to Kaieteur, Lethem and Orinduik Falls, historic Dutch forts and industrial and agricultural estates. There is an array of interior eco lodges including Surama, Rewa, Rock View and Karanambu and resorts including Arrowpoint Nature Resort, Hurakabra River Resort and Baganara Island Resort.