From World War I, when large oil fields were discovered on Venezuelan territory, to the early 80s, when gasoline companies became nationalized, the country was under a massive economic boom. Caracas was nicknamed the "Paris of Latin America", something that is barely recognizable today.
When the global financial crisis hit in 2008, Venezuela's already sensitive economy started faltering. Continuous shortage of basic supplies resulted in ever-increasing devaluation of the Bolivares.
When I visited in March and June 2013 there was rationing for toilet paper, scarceness of milk, flour and chicken, and as of now the nations inflation is currently one of the world's highest with well over 50%.
See more here.
Next galleryAmazon to Altiplano (2011)