Venezuela's second city, Maracaibo is a city of stifling heat not helpled by the proximity of the largest lake in Latin America. Although the city seems to sleep during the day, it wakes up in the evening to the rhythm of gaitas - a sort of improvised recital accompanied by maracca orchestras. If Maracaibo owes its prosperity to the discovery of oil reserves, this ancient lakeside city also gave its name to the country, as in 1499 the conquistadors named it Venezuela - "little Venice". Today, there is almost nothing left of the ancient colonial city, apart from the Cathedral and the Casa de Morales. In the surrounding area, go to visit the Sinamaica lagoon and its houses on stilts, reminders of Maracaibo of yesteryear.