mountains in Venezuela along the Caribbean coast; approximately 800 km long. The Caribbean Andes consist of a coastal and an interior range: the Cordillera de la Costa rises to an altitude of 2, 765 m and is broken up by a series of eroded tectonic valleys, including the Tuy River and Lake Valencia valley; the interrupted Serrania del Interior rises to 2, 600 m.
The coastal range is composed chiefly of metamorphic rock of the Mesozoic period, with granite intrusions along its axis; the southern range is made up of igneous and sedimentary rock of the middle Cenozoic. Earthquakes are common. There are deposits of oil and natural gas at the southern foot of the range. The vegetation is of a succulent scrub type on the lower part of the slopes, and there are mixed deciduous and evergreen mountain forests and scrub meadows above 900–1,000 m.