Coche Island

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Coche
Atardecer en la Isla de Coche.jpg
Sunset at Coche Island
Coche Mapa Vial.svg
Geography
Location Caribbean Sea
Coordinates 10°46′36″N 63°56′41″W / 10.77667°N 63.94472°W / 10.77667; -63.94472
Area 61 km2 (24 sq mi)
Length 11 km (6.8 mi)
Width 6 km (3.7 mi)
Highest elevation 60 m (200 ft)
Country
State Flag of Nueva Esparta.svg Nueva Esparta State
Municipio Villalba
Largest city San Pedro de Coche
Demographics
Population 8,242 (as of 2001-10-21)
This article is about an island. For the Coche language, see Camsá language.

Isla de Coche (Coche Island) is one of three islands forming the Nueva Esparta State of Venezuela, located in the Caribbean between Isla Margarita and the mainland. The other two islands are Isla Margarita, the main island of the state, and Cubagua, the smallest.

Geography[edit]

It covers an area of 55 km² (11 km long by 6 km), with a population of about 8,200 (1999 census). The highest elevation of the island is 60 m above the sea level. The climate is tropic, with an average temperatute of approximately 27 C to 38°C.

The island is coincident with the municipality of Villalba, with capital San Pedro de Coche. Other towns on Coche are El Bichar, Guinima, El Amparo, El Guamache and La Uva.

The economy depends mainly on tourism.

History[edit]

The island was discovered in 1498 by Christopher Columbus, populated by the Waikerio indigenous people. First efforts to settle Coche was made in the early 16th Century. There was previous population of refugees originating from the city of Nueva Cádiz which was destroyed by a tropical storm on Cubagua Island. All settlers, mostly the pearl daughters, abandoned Isla Coche in 1574.

The next successful settlement took place in 19th Century, and from this date Coche is still habitated.

El Amor Beach, Coche Island

Airport[edit]

Location City: Isla De Coche, Venezuela
Name: Andres Miguel Salazar Marcano
ICAO: SVIE

Details
Type: Airport (Aerodrome, Airfield)
Latitude: 10°47'40"N (10.794406)
Longitude: 63°58'54"W (-63.981589)
Datum: WGS 1984
Elevation: 10 ft (3 m)
Runways: 1
Longest: 3937 × 98 ft (1200 × 30 m)

Tourism[edit]

Beaches of the island

Coche Island is uniquely positioned for quality selective tourism (not massive). To the west of the island the conditions for windsurfing and kiteboarding (strong winds over 50 km/h with a sea without waves) and trucks candle can be cited among the best in the world. It can see the effect of strong winds and continued in the sparse vegetation of the island, as seen in the image of San Pedro de Coche. On the road can be practiced the cycling, naturally with sunscreen to prevent sunburn, given the absence of clouds over the year. The temperature, though high, is pleasant in the fresh sea air, considering that breeze rages precisely in the hottest hours of the afternoon.

On the island there are good quality hotels that offer tourists all the necessary facilities for a pleasant stay. It also offers rides and tours both aquatic and terrestrial. Tourist purposes, Coche Island maintains close communication with Margarita Island and the Venezuelan mainland Sucre State.

In fiction[edit]

The story of the Polish writer Arkady Fiedler's novel "Robison Crusoe Island" (Wyspa Robinsona, 1954) took place in Coche Island. The protagonist Jan (John) Bober, a half-Polish half-English Virginia pioneer, fled from government pursuit by a pirate ship. However it ran into heavy water and wrecked near the island. Jan and his two Arawak companions Arnak and Wagura (former slaves from the ship), the only survivors of the shipwreck, lived in 1725-1726 in the island. Later they received in the island a group of fled slaves from Margarita Island and with combined forces defeated Spanish slaver pursuers and seized their ship. Fearing Spanish revenge, Jan and his followers left the island on the captured ship. Their adventures continued in the two next Arkady Fiedler's novels "Orinoco" (Orinoko, 1957) and "The White Jaguar" (Biały Jaguar, 1980).

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 10°46′36″N 63°56′41″W / 10.77667°N 63.94472°W / 10.77667; -63.94472