The State of Mérida, Venezuela features the northern boundary of the Andes mountains (this is where we take our name...andes.net) which stretch from the southern most country in South America, Chile. The capital city of the state is also named: Mérida, and shares her name with other major cities in both Mexico and Spain.
From this point on, any similarities with anywhere else on earth.......cease!!
The State of Mérida has the greatest range of bio-diversity in Venezuela. The highest peak in Venezuela-Pico Bolivar (5,007 meters-about 3 miles) is in Mérida. The small sea-side village of Palmarito with her palms and sandy beaches on the southern end of South America's largest lake: Lake Maracaibo (at 3 meters above sea level) is the other extreme. With this three mile climatical difference it is easy to understand why our flora and fauna is unmatched for variety. Venezuela has more wild bird species than all of North America and Europe combined. A high percentage of these birds, including the giant Andes Condor, live here in Mérida.
Forest Leighty´s book: Hiking/Backpacking in the Venezuelan Andes is a favorite guide, listing 30 Andes hikes in the Mérida area.
Four National Parks totaling more than 1,500,000 acres (2,340 square miles) , 12 State Parks, 400 glacial mountain lagoons, breathtaking waterfalls. Add to that: pleasant year-round temperatures, fresh, clean ,unpolluted air, and you have found.....MÉRIDA, VENEZUELA.
Throughout Venezuela, Méridans are known for their conservative tranquillity along with their compassion for good food, drink, the arts and pride in their culture. A large reason for this unusual mix must be attributed to the presence of The University of Los Andes, or as it is known here: U.L.A.
Music? Enjoy free Sunday night concerts in the park. Starting time-1 hour before sundown. Or, 50 pieces performing in the modern Cultural Center. Mérida nightspots, especially on weekends, offer live music. From a 3 piece combo, to a 15 piece Salsa orchestra! Whenever and wherever you hear music, look around. We guarantee you will see bodies moving to the beat! We love our music!
In Venezuela, Mérida is known for its art (artesania) and craftsmen. Andes.net features Home Pages of local artists, many with national and international reputations.