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Destination Details

Catatumbo Lightning, Venezuela

The Catatumbo Lightning is a natural phenomenon that produces numerous thunderstorms in the basin of Lake Maracaibo, in the fishing village of Congo Mirador, belonging to the Venezuelan state of Zulia.

The phenomenon can be observed from April to November, from 20:00 hours until dawn, for 240 nights a year.

Venezuelan storms generate a high amount of ozone resulting in 10% of the layer of our planet. Because of its unique potential, advocates seek to label it as local nature heritage site under the protection of Unesco

Wari Indians offers a short explanation of lightning: they say, is due to the meeting of millions of fireflies that pay tribute to the parents of creation

The Guinness organization delivered the January 28, 2014 certification which recognizes the Catatumbo Lightning, a unique meteorological phenomenon that is generated south of Lake Maracaibo, in Zulia state in western Venezuela, as in the world of lightning highest concentration in the world

Venezuelan environmentalist Erik Quiroga believes the storms could help repair the damage to the ozone layer. So far there are no scientific studies that support this hypothesis, but the physical and British television presenter Brian Cox says that it is posible

The history books show that lightning has played a leading role in Venezuela, saving two invasions: the first was in 1595 when he lit up the flotilla of English privateer Francis Drake who wanted to loot the city of Maracaibo, by then under Spanish control.

A quarter century later, during the war of independence of Venezuela in 1823, the impressive flashes of lightning lit the sky for hours and betrayed the Spanish armada trying to sneak away to the shore

Thanks to the frequency and brightness of its ray, visible even from 400 kilometers away, the storm has been used as a guide by sailors since colonial times, earning the nickname "Lighthouse of Maracaibo" and a place in the flag and coat of your state, Zulia

It's natural beauty served as inspired films like "Avatar" and "Up".

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