Encyclopedia > Orinoco

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With a length of 2140 km, the Orinoco is one of the largest rivers of South America. It flows through Venezuela, having its source in Parima[?] on the Brazilian frontier, and from there making a wide arc, first flowing southwest, then west, north and finally northeast, into the Atlantic Ocean. At its mouth it forms a wide delta of 275 km. In the rainy seasons it can swell to a breadth of 22 kilometres and a depth of 100 meters. Most of the important Venezuelan rivers are tributaries of the Orinoco, the largest is the Apura[?]. The river is navigable for most of its length, dredging enables ocean ships to go as far as Ciudad Bolivar[?], 435 km upstream.

A peculiarity of the Orinoco river system is the Casiquiare[?], which starts as an arm of the Orinoco, and finds its way to the Rio Negro, a tributary of the Amazon, thus forming a 'natural canal' between the Orinoco and the Amazon.


  • Orinoco is also the name of one of The Wombles.
  • Irish singer Enya had a hit with Orinoco Flow (Sail Away).

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