Mélange Travel & Lifestyle Magazine April 2017 | Page 294

PLACES OF INTEREST As Margarita Island is only about 48 miles long and 12 miles wide, any one place on the island can be visited on a day trip. For this reason Jeep tours are very popular with visitors especially as the tour guides can speak several languages. Four of the most interesting and popular places to take a Jeep tour to are La Asunción and the Santa Rosa castle, El Valle with the Virgin of El Valle Church, Laguna de la Restinga National Park and the beaches at Punta Arenas. La Asunción Although La Asunción is the capital of the Venezuelan state of Nueva Esparta and has plenty for visitors to see such as the municipal palace and churches and has some streets which are for the exclusive use of pedestrians, it is perhaps the Castillo de Santa Rosa (Santa Rosa Castle) that is of most interest to them. Now fully restored and accessed by a short but steep set of steps, the castle was originally built in 1651 to ward off pirates so it provides great views of the coast and the sea but now also provides excellent views of the town.