| Caribbean Sea|
Antilles, Lesser Antilles
| 139 m (456 ft)|
La Orchila is an island and a military base off the coast of Venezuela, north of Caracas. It has numerous beaches, including one where the sand is markedly pink (Arena Rosada).
There is a presidential retreat on this island, and the residential complex reserved for the military houses consists mainly of elevated houses made of wooden logs. There is also a court for bolas criollas. All the facilities are connected by pathways, mostly unpaved but smooth and clean.
La Orchila Wikipedia
Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez was imprisoned on the island during the April 2002 coup.
On March 14, 2009, Russian Air Force Major General Anatolii Zhikharev, head of the Russian Air Force’s Long-Range Aviation, reported that Venezuela has offered Russia the use of the Antonio Diaz Naval Air Station on the island to base its strategic bombers. Chavez however denied this, which Kremlin official Alexei Pavlov prompted to say that the military just spoke about 'technical possibilities'.
The Dutch considered Orchilla to belong to their nearby island territory of Curaçao. The author M.D. Teenstra wrote in 1836 (in his book The Dutch West Indies):
The government of Curaçao also includes the uninhabited islets and rocks Little Curaçao, Aves, Roques and Orchilla." He goes on to say that "Orchilla, although we consider it to belong to Curaçao, is of too little importance to justify any dispute with Spain which claims this island as well. The Republic of Venezuela also considers it theirs and their coastal guard often chases away the fishermen from Curaçao who go there to collect shell fish, fire wood, grass and hay, turtles, and birds' eggs or burn lime.