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National Park La Restinga Print E-mail

La Restinga is one of the 16 National Parks of Venezuela. Every day, approximately 90 boatmen offer their services to the tourists to take them for a ride through the tunnels and channels of the lagoon. The ride lasts up to one hour and may include (if the tourist wishes) a visit to the beach. Boats are available from 7 am to 5 pm.
Parque Nacional La Restinga
Each boat makes at least one ride a day, in high season two or three. The boatmen are specialists on the lagoon, they protect it and take care of it to preserve it for their children.

- hidden passages and tight cannals lead the boat through a labyrinth only solvable by the experts and charm the visitor and puts them under some kind of a spell.

The colors, the mangroves and a sense of inmenseness take over, and, with a friendly smile, the driver of boat tells the legend ; Together with the first ones to explore the lagoon, a couple in love rode through the channals and passages. The went for a kiss and later came back for the women´s pride. The names given to the tunnels, channels and plazas derive from this ledgend.

La Restinga is formed by five channels, two tunnels and two plazas. El Beso (the kiss) , Paraíso del Amor (paradise of love) Del Orgullo (from pride) and Mi dulce Amor (my sweet love) are the names of the channels. The plazas are Mis Amores (my loves) and Bella Vista (beautiful view) and the favorite tunnel is called Los Enamorados (those in love). All those sites are formed by mangrove groups, a form of vegetations with particular characteristics that serves as nesting place for variety of species of birds.

NATURAL RESERVOIR – The salty waters of the lagoon house several marine species, due to the connection of the lagoon to the sea that allows free entering and leaving of fish and other inhabitants of the sea. During the entire year , a certain species of medusa that gets occasional visits from its family, may be seen, bright red starfish are everywhere and the curious little hipocampus (seahoreses) live between the roots of the mangroves. The mangroves serve also as a nesting place for sea gulls, pelicans and parrots. The roots are the habitat of oysters. In a certain time of the year you can buy them and enjoy them the freshest you will ever get them.

There are three kinds of mangroves in the lagoon: the white one, the black one an the red one. The first mentioned is the most common and you can recognize it by its aereal roots. The red one keeps its roots on the surface and the black one is to be identified by the light green color of its leafs. The ground of the lagoon is formed by mud and organic material. The water level depends on the changing moon and may decend to 3o centimeters. In the channels the water is up to 1 m deep.

NATURAL LABORATORY - The characteristics of La Restinga convert it into an ideal place for scientific work. It is visited constantly by scientists studying the marine activity and many of the species of Flora and Fauna native to the place.

The maintenance of the place is sostained by the boatmen. They are in charge to trim the mangroves to keep the passage ways free and the clean the dead mangrove material. Each and everone who works the lagoon has taken concience of what the expression National Park means and protects the lagoon and takes care of it because he knows it is his too.
Parque Nacional La Restinga
Parque Nacional La Restinga
Parque Nacional La Restinga
Parque Nacional La Restinga
Parque Nacional La Restinga
Parque Nacional La Restinga
Parque Nacional La Restinga
Parque Nacional La Restinga
Parque Nacional La Restinga

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