Cabo de la Vela is a ramshackle beach town 3 – 6 hours north of Riohahca. The reason it can take a short or long time to get there is because firstly you need to get to the dusty, wild frontier town of Uribia (around an hours drive). We got a Collectivo with two other travellers for 15,000 cop per person. You then can either get a 4wd for 15,000 cop per person and be there in an hour or so (depending on how fast your driver speeds) along the bumpy dirt road or get a truck for the same price and bounce around in the back with locals and goats (yes goats!) for up to four hours as the truck drops off and picks up passengers or supplies and stops and starts to check the engine or to climb under the truck and tinker for a worrying 20 minutes while your sweating it out in the back (yes really). We were lucky to get a air conditioned 4wd on the way there, arriving like royalty and roughed it on the way back with ten people and four bleating goats.
Once you arrive in Cabo de la Vela you will be happy you made the journey. The bay is stunning with calm clean water of the most beautiful turquoise blue. The town, although so basic – no wifi, no electricity after 11pm, a handful of shops and places to eat – has a Wild West charm to it.
We stayed at Rancheria Utta, a hostel which is a 40 minute walk up the beach. It was probably the nicest place to stay and cost 35,000 per person to stay in a cabana. A word of warning, our cabana was broken into (either by staff with a key or someone jumping over the wall from the deck as this is not sealed) and items such as torches and headphones were stolen. Keep your valuables with you at all times!
This place gets super windy which is why it is a kite surfers dream! There is a whole section of town with kite schools and hostels and watching these guys performing tricks in the late afternoon is a magical experience.
As for things to do, not much. You can walk to the lighthouse for great views, go out in a boat to some other beaches around the headland or spend 150,000 cop per person to travel to Punta Gallinas – the most northerly part of South America.
We just chilled and drank cheap Venezuelan beers with the locals, had numerous swims in the warm waters of the Caribbean and dined on fresh fish.