Lost World of Mount Roraima

Mount Roraima is known as South America’s ‘lost world’. A gigantic tableland encircled on all sides by soaring vertical cliffs, it towers over the surrounding savannahs and rainforest like an immense fortress.

Mount Roraima’s summit has been isolated for millions of years and is home to bizarre landscapes of towering stone pinnacles, a valley of shimmering quartz crystals, and unique animals and plants found anywhere on earth. The exploration of Mount Roraima inspired Arthur Conan Doyle’s novel The Lost World.

Key Facts

COST: £3,250 (British Pounds). Personal porters can be hired at extra costs (contact us for details).

START POINT: Boa Vista, Brazil

END POINT: Boa Vista, Brazil

GROUP SIZE: 6–10 (on double/twin room basis – single room supplement available).

DATES: Redfern Adventures will run this trip in December, 2022 and April, 2023. We deliberately would like to find a group of participants, then finalise the exact dates for the trip to best fit everyone’s schedules.

BESPOKE TOUR: If you do not wish to join a group tour, we can customise a private trip to suit your dates and interests. Please email us for details.

Trekking up Mount Roraima is one of South America’s greatest experiences!

SOUTH AMERICA’S ‘LOST WORLD’

Trekking up Mount Roraima is one of South America’s greatest experiences! This trip offers you the opportunity to see Mount Roraima up close and personal, as the plateaus’ gigantic cliffs rise on the horizon, and tower above you as you trek closer. We ascend via a ledge that runs up the cliffsides, which is actually relatively easy to traverse (no technical skills are needed, but a good level of fitness and high stamina are required). As this secret staircase takes us through the clouds, we watch the vegetation change from lowland savannah to misty, lush cloudforest, until finally we reach the summit of the lost world.

Getting there: Although this expedition takes place in Venezuela, we will start and end this trip in Boa Vista, Brazil (which is easier and safer Caracas). Participants can fly to Manaus (which is a major hub for international flights) and catch domestic flights to Boa Vista, e.g. Azul ( www.voeazul.com.br ) and search LATAM.
Starting this expedition from Manaus and Boa Vista also offers participants the advantage that they can spend a day or two before the expedition exploring Manaus’ fascinating colonial heritage in the heart of the Amazon. There are also countless tourists to explore the Amazon River and the Rio Negro, including trips to see pink river dolphins, wildlife excursions and visits to indigenous communities nearby.

Itinerary

Day 1:

Meet in Boa Vista at 7.00 am. Transfer in private charter vehicles to the Venezuelan border (approx 4 hours driving time). We cross the border, and arrive in Santa Elena, Venezuela. Lunch and snacks en-route. Dinner in restaurant in Santa Elena. Overnight in local hotel. Arrive in Boa Vista the night before.

Day 2:

After breakfast, transfer in 4*4 vehicles to Paratepui for registration with the Canaima National Park authorities. Begin trek to Mount Roraima, with the goal of reaching Rio Tek camp site (approximately 6 hours walking over relatively flat terrain). Lunch en-route. Camp-side dinner and overnight in tents. The views of Mount Roraima are spectacular!

Day 3:

Today we trek from Rio Tek campsite to Base Camp (located beneath the dramatic, gigantic cliffs of Mount Roraima). The trek is uphill, and takes approximately 6–8 hours. Lunch en-route. Camp-side dinner and overnight in tents.

Day 4:

We trek through misty, lush cloudforest, to the base of the ledge of Mount Roraima. Ascending the ledge, we climb through layers of mossy vegetation, through Bonnetia forest and groves of giant bromeliads and treeferns. The views across the surrounding lowlands are spectacular. Below the ledge, we see flowering Utricularia and Genlisea (including usually U. humboldtii). The climb up the ledge takes 4–5 hours. We then reach the summit of Mount Roraima, and step into a bleak, barren landscape of blackened stone, twisted rock formations and bizarre plants. We reach a “hotel” (campsite in a cave or under a rock overhang). Camp-side dinner and overnight in tents inside caves. The trek today is steep and uphill pretty-much the whole way. No technical skills needed – but it is steep. A good level of fitness and high stamina is needed.

Day 5, 6, 7 & 8:

We explore the summit of Mount Roraima. Note: we can decide the itinerary of our time on the summit as a group, depending upon everyone’s interests, the weather, and how much trekking we (as a group) would like to undertake. Recommended highlights include the Valley of the Crystals, the labyrinth of towering stone pinnacles, Lake Gladys, the Prow, Triple Point (the three way border of Venezuela, Guyana and Brazil) and the Oilbird Ravine (home to rare echo-locating oilbird Steatornis caripensis). The summit is the habitat for a plethora of orchids, bromeliads, airplants, carnivorous plants (Brocchinia, Drosera, Genlisea, Heliamphora (we will see H. nutans, H. glabra and a hybrid between the two species) and Utricularia), unique butterflies and toads, and a black and yellow spotted lizard called Riolama. A trek to La Ventana offers the chance to catch breathtaking views of some of the most spectacular scenery in South America.

Other activities include sunrise walks to the western cliff tops to see spectacular sunrise views of the neighbouring plateau Kukenán Tepui bathed in sunlight. The exploration of El Carro view point to see the whole plateau. We can also visit the Jacuzzis (crystal lined pools), the Pit, the Valley of a Thousand Columns and spectacular rock formations. During our stay, we look out for the elusive South American coati (Nasua nasua). Campside dinner and overnight in tents inside caves.

Day 9:

After breakfast, we descend down the ledge of Mount Roraima, and trek to Rio Tek. Trekking downhill is faster, and most people reach Rio Tek camp within 6–8 hours. Lunch en-route. Campside dinner and overnight in tents inside caves.

Day 10:

Today we trek from Rio Tek camp back to Paratepui (approx 4–5 hours walking) to meet 4*4 vehicles that transport us back to Santa Elena for lunch. Dinner in restaurant in Santa Elena. Overnight in local hotel.

Day 11:

We have private charter vehicles to explore the Gran Sabana. Highlights include, the jasper creek (made our of red semi-precious gemstone (note the intensive of red depends upon the light levels. On sunny days, the semi-opaque jasper is really red, on overcast days it is more brownish but beautiful). We can also visit several waterfalls, as well as Pemón villages and a population of lowland pitcher plants (Heliamphora heterodoxa). On clear days, the view of the Eastern Tepuis is spectacular. Dinner in restaurant in Santa Elena. Overnight in local hotel.

Day 12:

Transfer in charter vehicles to the Venezuelan border with Brazil, and onwards to Boa Vista, Brazil.

Promo video for this expedition:

Note: The pricing of this trip includes funds to enable Redfern Adventures to (1) pay Amerindian Pemón guides a fair wage, (2) make a significant donation to Paratepui Pemón village (3) and hire a rubbish collector to collect litter during this trip, so that we leave Mount Roraima in a better state than when we arrive.

We offer two add-on trips:
1. Photographic charter flight over the Eastern Tepuis and/or Angel Falls
2. Canoe trip to Angel Falls
See Itinerary PDF at the link above for details.