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April 1st, 2013 

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San Cristobal, Venezuela


 Those looking to travel to San Cristobal, Venezuela have a wealth of cultural and social opportunities to look forward to. Located on the Pan-American Highway in the extreme western reaches of Venezuela, San Cristobal has proudly preserved its Spanish heritage. It also boasts a large student population, who are dispersed amongst a large number of universities. Founded by Juan de Maldonado in 1561, San Cristobal has half a million people, and sits close to the border with Columbia.

 The main attraction in the city is the Feria Internacional de San Sebastian (International Fair of San Sebastian), held in the Pueblo Nuevo, next door to the Tachira state football grounds. The fair combines bullfighting, along with a variety of other sporting activities, such as the Vuelta al Tachira bicycle race, artistic festivities, an agricultural fair, and other activities. Other places to visit and sights to see around San Cristobal include its many historic squares and parks, the colonial town of San Pedro del Rio, the commercial town of San Antonio de Tachira, and Peribeca. At Christmastime these towns are especially festive and full of revelers and decorations.

 The towns of Palmira and Abejales, near the town of Tariba, are renowned for their sugar cane baskets. The Chorro el Indio waterfall is also worth checking out, as it is a serene natural area that provides a nice getaway from the city in rustic surroundings. If you're a young traveler, or are in a group with young travelers, then the leafy square of the Plaza de los Mangos in the Barrio Obrero is a popular gathering place for youth near the heart of San Cristobal. Featuring mini-malls, nightclubs, Internet cafes, and eateries and shops of all kinds, it is a vibrant slice of culture you don't haave to be 17 to enjoy.

 Founded by the Spanish explorer Juan de Maldonado in 1561, the city quickly became a key Spanish colonial settlement in the region. San Cristobal suffered an earthquake in 1875, which heavily damaged the city. The earthquake was known as the Earthquake de Cucuta, and also the Earthquake of the Andes. It is the third wealthiest city in Venezuela, and an important political and administrative center.


 The economy of San Cristobal is thriving, thanks to having a strong agricultural output that consists of corn, cassava, pineapple, sugar cane, and coffee. Though suffering as many countries are in the current world financial crisis, San Cristobal remains strong and true to its roots as a busy agricultural and administrative center. It is also a provider of hydroelectric and thermal-electric power, as well as being a major oil exporter.

 San Cristobal specialty lodgings include the highly-rated Posada Portal Vicentino in the Quinta Divino Nino neighborhood of the city. There's also the regal La Estancia del Rey David hotel, which has an online user rating that talks of its "excellent pricing". The Lidotel is a boutique hotel in the Centro Sambil area of San Cristobal.

The bottom line with San Cristobal is, you're going to find exciting cultural, geographical, and sightseeing wonders that are uniquely Venezuelan.

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