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Strand auf der Isla Margarita, Bild: Piotr G / shutterstock

Isla Margarita – Pearl of the Caribbean off the coast of Venezuela

Isla Margarita belongs to the Lesser Antilles in the Caribbean and is located about 40 kilometers off the coast of Venezuela. The inhabitants of the island proudly call the holiday paradise the “Pearl of the Caribbean”. There are numerous luxury hotel complexes and private villas on its territory. There are also plenty of restaurants, leisure activities and shopping opportunities on the island, which is also known as the spa centre.

Geographical location of Isla Margarita

Margarita Island is part of the Lesser Antilles. With a circumference of 956.8 square kilometers, it is the largest island of Venezuela. It also forms most of the state of Nueva Esparta. The largest city on the island is Porlamar with the international airport, but the capital is La Asuncion.

When is the cheapest time to visit Margarita Island?

Playa Pedro Gonzalez, Isla Margarita
Playa Pedro Gonzalez, Image: amnat30 / shutterstock

The climate on Isla Margarita is tropical and mild. The average annual temperature is 27 degrees Celsius. The water can reach temperatures of up to 28 degrees Celsius.

Since the temperatures are consistent, the Caribbean island can be visited all year round. However, the rainy season prevails in the months of November to March, during which precipitation must be expected throughout the day. So if you want to spend a beach holiday on Isla Margarita, you are well advised to do so from December to April, because this is when the least rain falls.

Getting to Margarita Island

Margarita Island can easily be reached by a direct flight from Germany . The airport “Santiago Marino” is located about 12 kilometers west of Porlamar. From the mainland in Venezuela, there are also boat connections from the ports of Puerto La Cruz and Cumana, which takes about 4.5 hours of travel time.
Recommended means of transport on the island are taxis or buses. For longer trips, a rental car can also be useful, which can be booked from home.

History of Isla Margarita

Isla Margarita owes its name to none other than Christopher Columbus, who found the island in August 1498 during one of his voyages of discovery. Because of the large number of pearls, he gave the island the name Margarita, which means “pearl” in Spanish. Even today, numerous traces from over 300 years of Spanish colonial times can be found.

Today, Isla Margarita is one of the most popular vacation destinations in the southern Caribbean. Many tourists come from Germany and the Netherlands. The city of Porlamar in the southeast of the island is considered the economic center. In the narrow streets of Porlamar, visitors will find a variety of small shops, elegant shops and shopping centres.

What to see in La Asuncion, the capital of Isla Margarita

The capital of Margarita Island is La Asunción. It is located in a valley, just a few kilometers towards the sea. Founded in 1565, the city is home to some sights such as the Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Asuncion, which was built between 1570 and 1615, the park-like Plaza Bolivar in the city center with a monument by Simon Bolivar, and the Castillo de Santa Rosa on a hill above the city. The Nueva Cadiz Museum is also worth a visit. Furthermore, some magnificent houses from the colonial era can be admired.

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A visit to the city of Pampatar

Isla Margarita, Castillo Santa Rosa
Castillo Santa Rosa, Image: Anton_Ivanov / shutterstock

To the southeast of Isla Margarita is the town of Pampatar. In the Native American language, Pampatar means “house of salt”. In the centre of the former fishing village, you can admire some buildings that date back to the colonial era. First and foremost, this includes the Castillo de San Carlos Borromeo fortress. The fortress dates back to the 17th century and underwent a thorough renovation in 1968. In a museum within the castle, exhibits such as paintings and weapons can be viewed.

Not far from the castle is the small church Iglesia de Santisimo Cristo del Buen Viaje. Their cross serves as a pilgrimage site for the locals, who pray for a safe return before a long journey. Also worth a visit is the Casa la Aduana with its city museum in a former customs house.

Beach vacation on Isla Margarita

Of course, the Caribbean island of Isla Margarita is a popular destination for beach vacationers. Playa el Agua is particularly popular. The beach is located on the northeastern tip of the island. It attracts visitors with its white sand, turquoise sea, coconut trees and a light breeze. Restaurants and bars are also available.

Surfing in El Yaque

A paradise for surfers is El Yaque beach, which has a length of around three kilometres. It is located near the airport of Porlamar. The mostly young surfers come there mainly because of the ideal wind conditions and the excellent waves.

Diving at Playa el Agua

At Playa el Agua, friends of diving get their money’s worth. The award-winning dive center guarantees high quality service and training.

The most beautiful beaches on the island

Playa El Agua:

  • Natural beauty: The beach is characterized by its fine white sand and clear waters. Numerous coconut palms and palm trees offer pleasant shady spots.
  • Diverse Activities: Visitors can take part in various activities, including water sports such as jet skiing, paddleboarding, and water skiing. There are also opportunities to explore nearby islands such as Coche and Cubagua.
  • Shopping and dining: Along the beach there are a variety of shops and stalls selling handicrafts and souvenirs. Numerous restaurants offer service directly on the beach.
  • Accessibility: Playa El Agua is easily accessible. From Porlamar, the largest city on the island, the journey takes about 30 minutes. From Santiago Mariño International Airport, the beach can be reached in about 40 minutes.

In addition to the natural and tourist attractions, Playa El Agua has an infrastructure of restaurants, bars, cafes and various accommodations, including all-inclusive hotels and smaller inns. There is also a flea market at the southern end of the beach.

Popular not only with tourists but also with locals, Playa El Agua offers a perfect combination of natural beauty and tourist infrastructure that makes it worth visiting

 

Playa Parguito

Playa Parguito, Isla Margarita
Beautiful view from the beach of Parguito, picture. Paolo Costa / shutterstock

Playa Parguito, located at the northeastern end of Isla Margarita, is a popular beach that is particularly popular with locals and surfers. With a length of about 1000 meters and a width of 20 meters, this beach offers an ideal surfing destination due to its oceanic waves.

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This beach is known for its clear waters, soft white sand, and relaxed atmosphere that makes it a perfect destination for a relaxing beach vacation. Playa Parguito is a hotspot for water sports, especially surfing, boogie boarding and body surfing. There are surf schools and rentals nearby that offer equipment and lessons.

Although Playa Parguito doesn’t offer as many restaurants and other amenities as Playa El Agua, it’s popular with those looking for more privacy among the beaches of Isla Margarita. The beach is protected by a natural reef, which creates a calm and peaceful environment for visitors. The waters are shallow and calm, ideal for children and families.

In addition to the water activities, Playa Parguito is also an ideal place for swimming and sunbathing. The beach is surrounded by lush vegetation and tall palm trees, which create a calm and peaceful atmosphere. There are several beachfront restaurants and bars serving delicious local cuisine as well as refreshing cocktails and drinks.

Playa Parguito is also close to other impressive beaches on the island, such as Playa El Agua or Playa Guacuco, thus offering more opportunities to experience the beauty of Isla Margarita.

Playa Caribe

Playa Caribe, located on the west coast of Isla Margarita, just north of Juan Griego, is a popular beach known for its natural beauty and relaxed atmosphere. The beach stretches for almost a kilometer (1200 m) and offers several restaurants and food stalls.

Special features of Playa Caribe are:

  • Nature and surroundings: The beach has white sand and a pleasant cooling breeze near the water. There are moderate waves, and the water gets deeper relatively quickly, making it less suitable for young children, but older children enjoy playing in the waves.
  • Water sports and activities: Playa Caribe is also suitable for surfing. In addition, you can rent a boat or jet ski and explore the small rocky island opposite the beach. At the western end of the beach, there are rocky formations and caves to explore.
  • Nightlife: In the evening, the beach turns into a lively place with music, dancing and nightly swimming. Restaurants and bars offer local food and drinks, including special cocktails such as “Dacquiri de Parchita” (passion fruit daiquiri).
  • Accessibility and amenities: The beach is easily accessible, both by bus and by taxi from Juan Griego. Sun loungers are available for rent and waiters serve right up to the water.

Culinary specialties on Isla Margarita

Friends of exquisite dishes are recommended to visit the Marlin fish restaurant . His specialties include delicious lobster menus. The restaurant at Playa el Agua also scores with its beach location and wonderful views.

Playa el Agua is also considered ideal for night owls. Visitors will find a variety of exquisite bars there.

Hotel tips for Isla Margarita

  1. Sunsol UNIK LUXURY HOTEL: A charming hotel known for its high standard of hospitality and its beautiful pool and terrace bar.
  2. Lidotel Margarita: This hotel has a great location on the island and is part of Margarita’s largest shopping mall. It is close to the best restaurants in town and offers a wide range of amenities.
  3. Margarita Village: Known for its lively atmosphere and diverse recreational opportunities. It offers an all-inclusive concept and is a great place for entertainment and recreation.
  4. Stevie Wonderland Hotel-Boutique: A highly-rated boutique hotel known for its unique atmosphere, superb breakfasts, and beautiful outdoor spaces.

Weather in Isla Margarita

Month Average temperature (°C) Precipitation (mm)
January 27 41
February 27 28
March 28 13
April 28 18
May 29 13
June 29 18
July 29 28
August 29 41
September 29 64
October 29 104
November 28 64
December 27 41