Buenaventura, Valle del Cauca

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Buenaventura
Isla Cascajal
Buenaventura and Cascajal
Municipality and town
Seaside park near the main tourist jetty
Seaside park near the main tourist jetty
Flag of Buenaventura
Flag
Official seal of Buenaventura
Seal
Nickname(s): El Puerto (the Port)
Location of the municipality and town of Buenaventura, Colombia in the Valle del Cauca Department of Colombia.
Location of the municipality and town of Buenaventura, Colombia in the Valle del Cauca Department of Colombia.
Buenaventura is located in Colombia
Buenaventura
Buenaventura
Location in Colombia
Coordinates: 3°52′38″N 77°1′36″W / 3.87722°N 77.02667°W / 3.87722; -77.02667
Country  Colombia
Department Valle del Cauca Department
Region Pacific Region of Colombia
Regional District Special economic zone district
Foundation 14 Julio de 1540
Founded by Juan Ladrillero by orden from Pascual de Andagoya
Government
 • Mayor Bartolo Valencia Ramos (Partido Liberal Colombiano)
 • City Council
Area
 • Total 6.078 km2 (2.347 sq mi)
Elevation 0-7 m (0-22.96 ft)
Population (2011 estimate)
 • Total 362,625
 • Rank Ranked 19th
 • Demonym Porteño
Time zone Colombia Standard Time (UTC-5)
Area code(s) 224
Website buenaventura.gov.co/

Buenaventura is a coastal seaport city on the department of Valle del Cauca, Colombia (South America). Buenaventura (Spanish for "good fortune") is the main port of Colombia in the Pacific Ocean.[1]

Buenaventura is a city with a population of 333,194[2] as of the 2005 census (most of city development lies on Cascajal Island) and it is the size of Los Angeles' metropolitan area; most of the city's land is rural with scattered small villages throughout. It is served by the Gerardo Tobar López Airport.

History[edit]

The city was founded on July 14, 1540, by Juan de Ladrilleros through orders from Pascual de Andagoya. At that time it was inhabited by the natives called "The Buscaja Amerindians". The city was destroyed by Native Americans before 1600; it was later rebuilt. Buenaventura thrived after the opening of the Panama Canal in 1914; and in the 50's became a regular stop over for the "International Jet Set". Today the city is crucial for sending raw materials to nearby areas; this has brought prosperity and allowed recent new development to occur.

Demographics[edit]

The city is, as of 2011, affected by very high levels of poverty and violence, and is considered a center for the cocaine trade in Colombia.[3]

Buenaventura's population is mostly of African descent (85%) with 10% mixed European/Native Indian and 5% Spanish.

Geography[edit]

It is located a few miles from the western cordillera of the Andes mountain range and the major city of Cali, the department's capital. Buenaventura is one of the rainiest cities in the world with 6000–7000 mm of precipitation annually.

Climate[edit]

Climate data for Buenaventura
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 37.0
(98.6)
37.0
(98.6)
37.0
(98.6)
37.0
(98.6)
36.0
(96.8)
37.0
(98.6)
37.0
(98.6)
35.4
(95.7)
35.6
(96.1)
35.8
(96.4)
34.0
(93.2)
35.6
(96.1)
37
(98.6)
Average high °C (°F) 32.8
(91)
33.3
(91.9)
33.9
(93)
34.1
(93.4)
33.4
(92.1)
33.2
(91.8)
33.2
(91.8)
32.8
(91)
33.2
(91.8)
32.8
(91)
32.3
(90.1)
32.7
(90.9)
33.14
(91.65)
Daily mean °C (°F) 25.9
(78.6)
25.9
(78.6)
26.1
(79)
26.2
(79.2)
26.0
(78.8)
25.8
(78.4)
26.0
(78.8)
25.7
(78.3)
25.6
(78.1)
25.6
(78.1)
25.7
(78.3)
25.6
(78.1)
25.84
(78.52)
Average low °C (°F) 19.7
(67.5)
20.0
(68)
19.9
(67.8)
20.1
(68.2)
19.9
(67.8)
19.7
(67.5)
20.0
(68)
20.0
(68)
19.7
(67.5)
20.0
(68)
19.6
(67.3)
19.0
(66.2)
19.8
(67.65)
Record low °C (°F) 14.4
(57.9)
15.4
(59.7)
14.6
(58.3)
14.6
(58.3)
16.2
(61.2)
15.1
(59.2)
13.6
(56.5)
13.4
(56.1)
14.2
(57.6)
15.0
(59)
15.1
(59.2)
15.0
(59)
13.4
(56.1)
Precipitation mm (inches) 330.8
(13.024)
264.2
(10.402)
347.2
(13.669)
468.3
(18.437)
606.9
(23.894)
501.2
(19.732)
530.8
(20.898)
578.2
(22.764)
724.2
(28.512)
803.3
(31.626)
639.1
(25.161)
481.4
(18.953)
6,275.6
(247.072)
Avg. precipitation days 19 16 19 19 24 23 24 25 25 25 24 21 264
 % humidity 87 86 86 86 86 87 86 88 88 87 86 86 86.6
Source: Instituto de Hidrologia Meteorologia y Estudios Ambientales [4]

Crime[edit]

Further information: Crime in Colombia

Buenaventura has had a notorious history plagued by the Colombian armed conflict, drug trafficking, violence, and the presence of guerrilla and paramilitary groups.[5] Due to the violence of Buenaventura The New York Times wrote an article titled "Cocaine Wars Make Port Colombia’s Deadliest City".[6]

Colombian authorities have seized almost US$ 28 million in cash from drug kingpins. The money found was in several shipping containers sent from Manzanillo, Colima (Mexico) and Houston (USA), that belonged to brothers Luis Enrique and Javier Antonio Calle Serna, also known as the ‘Combas’.[7][8]

Between 2008 and 2010, the amount of reported homicides in the city doubled. In 2010, the murder rate of Buenaventura was 175.2 homicides per 100,000, a rate 24 times that of New York City. To counter the violence, the Colombian government has set up a marine special forces unit in the worst area of the city.[9] In 2011, it seemed that counter-violence efforts had improved crime metrics, even while aspects of the Colombian drug war in that city worsened. According to community activist Victor Hugo Vidal,"If you ask the authorities, they will tell you [the city] is better -- that the homicide rates are way down. But for us [living here], during the last 10 years, there has been no change."[10]

Notable Natives and Residents[edit]

References[edit]

Coordinates: 3°53′N 77°02′W / 3.883°N 77.033°W / 3.883; -77.033