Despite being surrounded by human settlements, the park's mountainous terrain makes accessing the park extremely difficult and limited. The largest towns closest to park access are Humocaro Alto with 4,309 inhabitants (OCEI 1994) and Humocaro Bajo (2,293 inhabitants), located about 13 kilometers along the road from the park's main entrance. The small town of Buenos Aires with 128 inhabitants (UTM 19P 383157, 1061633) is located on the park's border, although, because there is no official map, it is impossible to determine whether or not the town is actually inside the park. At this point, the road ends and the park's security post regulates access.
The towns of Carache (with 28 inhabitants) and Burbusay (1,255 inhabitants) are west of Dinira; the town of Barbocaos is northeast of the park and has 1,056 inhabitants. These towns all rely on agriculture and to a lesser degree grazing.
The town of Paraíso de Chabasquén (4,711 inhabitants) is southeast of the park in the state of Portuguesa, but it does not have any direct access to the park. To the south of the park is the town of Campo Elías (1,983 inhabitants). Neither of these towns has much, if any, influence over the park.
In addition, there are some isolated houses from ancient farms inside of Dinira National Park. Most of these have been abandoned but some still conduct low intensity agricultural and grazing activities.
A group of telecommunication antennas are located on top of the Ño Chon Hill, close to San Pedro. Workers from the television and telephone companies frequently come to the zone and access to this part is not restricted or controlled by INPARQUES.
The park is accessible by three terrestrial routes. The eastern sector is accessed using the Humocaro Alto to Buenos Aires highway; from Buenos Aires the road ends and one must walk to reach Cendé's páramo. Also from Humocaro Alto, one can travel to Barbacoas then onto La Cascada del Vino recreation zone. Another route is from Carache, which provide access to the northwestern side of the park and Cendé's páramo. The park's southern sector can be accessed from the town of Campo Elías, located along the main Biscucuy-Boconó Highway, by taking the road to Guaitó. Except for the area immediately surrounding La Cascada del Vino, there are no vehicle roads crossing the park.
La Cascada del Vino is the most popular tourist spot in Dinira and receives the most visitors. It is a magnificent 90-meter waterfall and is the central attraction in the park's only recreation zone. Between 50 and 300 people visit the waterfall every weekend (depending on the time of year), normally generating between 40 thousand Bolivars (Bs) during the off-season and 150 thousand Bs during the high-season. The fees are 500 Bs per person and 1,000 Bs per vehicle (0.26 and 0.52 US dollars, respectively). The fees are not always collected because of irregular staffing at the recreation zone. During Carnival of 2003 (March 1-4), one of the busiest times of year, the park earned 2 million Bs ($1,000 US) from entrance fees. The number of visitors to the waterfall in 2004 had already reached approximately 400 people by the time of our field evaluation, conducted in January 2004.
Though not officially zoned, the areas surrounding La Cascada del Vino are considered the "Recreation Zone", with parking areas, roads, and picnic sites. There is also a privately owned café which pays 60,000 Bs per month to INPARQUES.
There are only a few tourism companies operating regularly in the area. Most of the visitors are family groups from the hot regions of Lara State who come to the waterfall for their vacations or for weekend getaways.
Small groups interested in camping in the mountain's lower elevations go to Buenos Aires. During 1998, approximately 770 people entered the park at this area. Only a few hikers choose to make the five-hour hike to camp in the páramos of Rosas and Cendé.
One of the signs posted at the camping site in the Buenos Aires Sector (photo © César Aponte).