Due to ongoing crime, unrest and instability throughout Venezuela, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advises against all travel to the following areas: within 80km (50 miles) of the Colombian border in the states of Zulia, Tachira, Barinas, Apure and Bolívar; 80km (50 miles) from the Colombian border in Amazonas state, as far as 100km (62 miles) south of Puerto Ayacucho; within 40km (25 miles) of the rest of the Colombian border.
The FCO further advises against all but essential travel to all other areas of the country. If you''re in Venezuela, you should remain vigilant and informed, avoid protests and demonstrations – which can turn violent with little warning – and keep your departure options under review. Borders with Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao are closed and there is currently no air or sea traffic between Venezuela and these islands.
Welcome to Venezuela
Spectacular Venezuela, home to some of South America's most incredible landscapes, rightly has a terrible image problem at the moment. Hyperinflation has led to a dramatic drop in living standards and issues with the supply of basic goods, while personal safety, particularly in Caracas, is worse than anywhere else on the continent. And yet, visiting Venezuela is both possible and remarkably cheap, with dollars instantly making even backpackers feel wealthy. Safety is a serious concern, of course, but sensibly managed it should be no deterrent to a trip.
The rewards if you do go are frankly immense. Few countries in the world have this degree of natural beauty: Andean peaks, Caribbean coastline, idyllic islands, grasslands teeming with wildlife, the steamy Orinoco Delta and the world's highest waterfall, Angel Falls. This is true trip-of-a-lifetime stuff, and right now you’ll have it pretty much all to yourself.