As travelers, we love to visit little-known places, away from the tourist traps and where you can experience the local culture. An excellent opportunity for that is to travel overland in Guyana, a small country in the northeast of South America, bordered by Brazil, Suriname and Venezuela, and the Atlantic Ocean. It is a country with incredible biodiversity, as it offers travelers the opportunity to connect with the virgin jungles of the Amazon and also, for those who like to enjoy a day at the beach, to visit the Caribbean Sea.
The country has a number of forests, mountains, jungles, and animal species in natural reserves such as the Kanuku Mountains and the Iwokrama Forest. Like its neighboring country, Suriname, it is a territory characterized by its rivers since it has almost an uncountable number of them. Among them is the Essequibo River, on the border with Venezuela, as well as the Courantyne River, on the border with Suriname, a river that has 70 km of navigable waters, connecting both Guyana and Suriname with maritime transportation.
If your destination is the beach, we recommend you to visit the warm waters and white sand of Shell Beach, departing from Georgetown, passing through Essequibo and Charity.
Places to visit in Guyana
Georgetown is the capital of the country and every traveler should spend at least a couple of days here. In this city, we can find a lot of incredible tourist sites, and when you use the AndesTransit search engine to find transportation, we also recommend the best accommodation, and when you check out, we’ll recommend some great places to visit in Georgetown to make the most of your stay!
The first stop is St. George's Cathedral. This building belongs to the Anglican church and is well known worldwide for being one of the tallest wooden cathedrals. It was designed by the English architect, Sir Arthur Blomfield and was completed in 1899. The highlights of this cathedral are its high ceiling supported by Gothic-style arches, its stained glass windows behind the altar, and a historic chandelier, which was a gift from Queen Victoria (1819-1901) of England to show her appreciation for the Cathedral.
The next stop will take you to see some of the country's wildlife. In Georgetown are the Penang Botanical Gardens and the Penang Zoo. The Botanical Garden was opened in 1895 and the Zoo in 1952, both of which function as rescue and rehabilitation centers for wildlife. The botanical garden comprises 30 hectares of plants from various regions of the country, such as tulips and palm trees, making it a popular destination for locals looking to disconnect from the city surrounded by nature. The zoo is home to over two hundred types of birds such as toucans and harpy eagles, as well as large felines native to this area of South America, so don't forget to bring your camera.
After taking your time in Georgetown, we recommend a visit to Kaieteur Park. This is located in the Potaro-Siparuni region, in the mountainous area of the country. To get there, you can take a minibus to Mahdia from Georgetown. Then you will have to get to Pamela Landing, from where you take a boat to Tukeit, inside the nature reserve. It is one of the largest natural parks in Guyana and boasts a large number of endemic species, such as the rocket frog, the red howler monkeys, or the largest butterfly in South America (20cm) known as the Guyanese sun butterfly. You can go hiking and take pictures at any of the three stops inside the park. Once in the park do not forget to go to the Kaieteur Falls; at 240 meters high it is one of the highest in the world and enables visitors one of the most spectacular views in the country. You can also hear the story of the natives of Guyana from their own mouths, as they are part of the park staff.
Transportation in Guyana
One of the most popular forms of transportation for independent travelers in Guyana is private transportation, both cabs and private operators. Many of them offer their service in 4x4 vehicles, which is useful if you are traveling to the interior of the country. However, we recommend you make a reservation in advance with a reliable provider to avoid getting overcharged and to coordinate all the details of the trip. AndesTransit has a wide network of transportation providers in Guyana, so we can offer you the best option at the best price all year round.
Another option is to travel by minivan in Guyana. These vehicles operate as intercity buses for locals and have space for up to 15 people. The best option is to make a reservation in advance, as the buses fill up quickly and do not carry standing passengers.
If you are traveling to destinations such as Kaieteur or Shell Beach, you will have to take a boat. These are usually negotiated directly at the departure point as they work according to the client's request at the time of travel.
Traveling to other countries from Guyana
One of the countries bordering Guyana is Brazil, the largest nation in South America and which has a lot to offer for those who wish to continue their adventure beyond Guyana. Many travelers decide to take advantage of the proximity to get from Guyana to Brazil, and they do so by crossing a very quiet border into the exuberant Brazilian culture.
The route you should take is from Lethem, Guyana, to Bonfim, Brazil. If the trip starts from Georgetown, it is recommended to travel by bus (or cab) to Lethem and then cross the border on foot. Check sources such as VisaHQ to find out if you need a visa to enter Brazil and process your visa in Georgetown.
Once in Bonfim, you can take a bus to Boa Vista, only two hours away. From Boa Vista you can continue to Manaus, the capital of the Brazilian Amazon, and the travel hub for those arriving from Iquitos (Peru) who are looking for an experience navigating the largest river in the region: the Amazon.
If you want to travel from Boa Vista to Manaus, AndesTransit.com makes it possible to book your bus ticket in advance. Then print your travel itinerary or simply download it to your mobile device and you’ll be ready to board.
Another attractive destination is Suriname, a country that also borders Guyana. If you travel from Georgetown to Paramaribo (capital of Suriname), you will have to board different types of transportation along the way. You will have to take a minivan from Georgetown to the ferry station that crosses the Courantyne River from Moisen Creek and takes you to the new ferry terminal on the Suriname side. From there you can take a shuttle to Paramaribo, about 3.5 hours away.