Venezuela: Angel Falls, Cuatro, & Guasacaca
Want to know more about Venezuela? Are you a lover of travel, geography teacher, homeschooling or involved parent, student, or life-long learner? In an effort to make world geography more meaningful and memorable, I've compiled all you will need to locate Venezuela on a map, cook a Venezuelan meal, watch YouTube clips on Venezuela, color the flag, create a Venezuelan craft, read a great book about Venezuela, and more!
Please DO NOT copy this elsewhere without giving proper credit: http://iijuan12.hubpages.com/hub/v-is-for-venezuela
Where is Venezuela?
Locate Venezuela on this map of South America. Use this map of Venezuela to label the capitol, Caracas. Mark other relevant features (rivers, mountains, famous locations, etc.) if desired. If you'd like to spend a bit more time researching the country, you can add the language, currency, type of government, religion, and/or famous landmarks. Write them on the back of the map. You can easily find all this information at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venezuela.
Fun Facts About Venezuela
Christopher Columbus first sighted Venezuela during his third voyage to the New World.
Venezuela has the highest waterfall in the world called Angel Falls. It drops 3,212 feet, which is half the times the height of the Empire State Building.
The term 'Little Venice' was given to Venezuela by its explorers who found houses built on stilts in a lake, which reminded them of Venice.
In Venezuela, children receive presents twice during the Christmas season. Baby Jesus is traditionally thought to bring gifts instead of Santa Claus. On December 25, children awake to look for their gifts around the "Nacimiento" (Christmas tree) . On January 5th, children leave strands of straw beside their bed at night. January 6 is the Day of the Reyes Magos, thought to be the day on which the three wise kings came to visit Mary and Jesus. It is believed that the Three Wise Men still looks for the Baby Jesus on every January 5th night and leave gifts in those places that resemble a stable. On the following morning, children wake up to find toys and candies in place of the straw. They look at mirror to check if they have a black smudge on their cheek. On finding the mark, they know that Balthazar, King of the Ethiopians, kissed them while they were sleeping.
Visiting Venezuela on YouTube: Caracas, Venezuela
History of Venezuela's Ancient Tepuis
Venezuela Outdoor Adventure with BikeHike, A National Geographic Award Winning Trip
Venezuela Top 10 Places to Visit
Prepare and serve Guasacaca (Venezuelan Avocado Salsa) with tortilla chips, Pabellon Criollo (Venezuelan Pulled Beef), white rice, Caraotas Negras (black beans heated from a can), fried/baked plantains, and Jugo de Mango (mango juice found in the Mexican/Latin American section of most grocery stores).
- Prep time: 20 min
- Cook time: 2 hours 40 min
- Ready in: 3 hours
- Yields: 6
Guasacaca (Venezuelan Avocado Salsa)
- 2 cups finely chopped onions
- 3/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper (1 small)
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped seeded jalapeno peppers
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1 large minced garlic clove
- 1 1/2 cups chopped peeled avocados (about 2)
- 1 1/2 cups chopped seeded plum tomatoes (about 1 pound)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
- Combine the first 9 ingredients in a large bowl; toss mixture gently. Cover and refrigerate 3 hours. Stir in avocado and remaining ingredients just before serving. Serve with tortilla chips if desired. (This recipe came from food.com.)
- Prep time: 20 min
- Cook time: 1 hour 40 min
- Ready in: 2 hours
- Yields: 8
Pabellon Criollo (Venezuelan Pulled Beef)
- 7 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 chopped carrots
- 2 chopped stalks celery
- 2 chopped onions
- 1 (1 1/2 lb) flank steaks
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 chopped red bell peppers
- 4 minced garlic cloves
- 1 chopped tomato
- salt and fresh ground black pepper
- cooked black beans (as an accompaniment)
- cooked white rice (as an accompaniment)
- cilantro leaf (for topping)
- queso fresco or shredded mozzarella cheese (for topping)
- In a large pot (that has a tight fitting lid) heat 3 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add the carrots, celery, and 1 onion and fry for a few minutes until softened; remove the vegetables to a plate. Season the meat with salt and pepper; add 2 tablespoons more oil to the pan, if needed, and brown the meat on both sides, about 5 minutes. Return the softened vegetables to the pan along with the bay leaf. Add enough water to just about cover the meat and bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover, and simmer gently until meat is very tender, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Remove the meat from the pot and set aside; strain the liquid and reserve. Add another 2 tablespoons oil to the pan and put in the peppers, garlic, tomatoes, and the remaining onion; fry on medium-low heat until everything is soft and broken down, about 15 minutes. Shred the meat and add to the pan to heat through. Add some of the reserved braising liquid if the mixture becomes too dry. Serve with black beans and cooked white rice, and garnish with cilantro leaves and queso fresco. (This recipe came from food.com.)
- Prep time: 5 min
- Cook time: 15 min
- Ready in: 20 min
- Yields: 4
Platanos Tajaditas (Baked "Fried" Plantains)
- 4 plantains (as ripe as you can get them)
- Preheat the oven to 450°F. Coat a nonstick cookie sheet with cooking spray. Cut the ends off of the plantains and peel them. Cut each plantain on the diagonal into 1/2 inch slices. Arrange in single layer and coat tops with cooking spray. Bake, turning occasionally, for 10-15 minutes, until plantains are golden brown and very tender. (This recipe came from food.com.)
Make, decorate, & play a cuatro
The national musical instrument is the cuatro, which is similar to a ukulele and only has 4 strings. ("Cuatro" means 4 in Spanish.) Make, decorate, & play a cardboard and fishing line cuatro by following most of the directions at tlc.howstuffworks.com. Make the cuatro smaller than a guitar, and only add 4 strings.
Read a book about Venezuela
This 40 page picture-book tells the Pemones Indian folktale of how Angel Falls, the highest waterfall in the world, came to be. This book is written in both English and Spanish.
This is a modern story book about a boy who take a cable car up the mountains overlooking Caracas, Venezuela.
Pray for the people of Venezuela
To find out about the religious nature of Venezuela and specific ways you can pray for the country, go to operationworld.com.
Read a book about Venezuela
This 63 page book is full of wonderful photographs that capture modern-day Venezuela.
This picture book biography tells of the man who sought to break Venezuela free from Spain's rule.
I haven't been to Venezuela yet. Have you?
Where is Caracas, the capital of Venezuela?
Other countries starting with the letter V
Would you prefer to study a different country? Try one of these.
Virgin Islands (US Territory)
Ready to visit other countries?
Go to Around the World in 26 Letters to find links to all the countries we "visited." Each webpage features a menu, craft, books, video clips, worksheets, and more!