Major Rivers Of Venezuela

The Orinoco River, pictured here, is one of the largest rivers in Venezuela.
The Orinoco River, pictured here, is one of the largest rivers in Venezuela.

Venezuela is covered by many rivers in its eco-regions flowing from the Amazon forests, the Guiana Highlands and the Andes Mountains. The rivers in Venezuela flow from the north to the south, and the rivers are an important source of water not only for humans but also for a diverse community of plants and animals.

Major Rivers Of Venezuela

Rio Negro

Rio Negro flows from the Department of Guainía through Colombia, Venezuela, and Brazil where it drains into the Amazon River. It is the largest blackwater river in the world, with a length of 1386 miles. The river has several tributaries which flow into it along its course forming a large volume of water and creating large islands. The river is home to about 700 species, 100 of them endemic, and some of them even undescribed.

Orinoco River

The Orinoco is the second longest river in Venezuela, covering a distance of 1330 miles. The river is shared by Venezuela and Colombia, although 76% of the river is in Venezuela. The river's flow besides at the Parima range near the Brazil-Venezuela border. The river’s tributaries include some of the most important rivers in Venezuela. The river forms a delta at its mouth before draining into the Atlantic Ocean. The River is a principal means of transport for the people in the eastern and interior Venezuela. The river is home to an abundant array of diverse plants and animals, including the rare Orinoco crocodile which is restricted to the Orinoco basin.

Arauca River

The River flows from the Andes Mountains in Colombia and into the Orinoco in Venezuela. The river has a length of 652 miles and although it is mainly navigable, abut 20% of it is impassable. The river forms part of the boundary between Venezuela and Colombia. River Arauca is a tributary of the Orinoco River.

Apure River

The Apure River is the fourth longest in Venezuela and is also shared by Columbia. The total length of the river is 645 miles. The river flows from the Páramo del Batallón and flows through Llanos before draining into the Orinoco. The river is fairly navigable, providing an important source of transportation in the area.

​Other rivers in Venezuela and their significance

Venezuela’s other rivers include Caroni, Meta, Caura, Cuyuni, Guárico and Ventuari. The rivers in Venezuela are exploited for fish, water as well as hydroelectric power which is essential to the growth of the regions surrounding the river systems in Venezuela. Despite the economic importance of these rivers, they have been exposed to unfavorable conditions from deforestation to pollution leading to constant shrinkage and destruction of these resources.

Major Rivers Of Venezuela

RankMajor Rivers of VenezuelaTotal Length
1Rio Negro1,386 miles (shared with Brazil and Colombia)
2Orinoco1,330 miles (shared with Colombia)
3Arauca652 miles (shared with Colombia)
4Apure645 miles (shared with Colombia)
5Caroni592 miles
6Meta500 miles (shared with Colombia)
7Caura449 miles
8Cuyuni384 miles (shared with Guyana)
9Guarico326 miles
10Ventuari323 miles

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