Arauca is the capital of the province of Arauca. The town lies in the east of Colombia on the border with Venezuela. Situated on the banks of the Arauca River. The river is the border between Colombia and Venezuela. By "José Antonio Páez International bridge" the 2 countries are connected. The bridge was built between 1964 and 1967 and is mainly used for oil to be transported to other parts of the region.
The growth of the city of Arauca was remarkable in 15 years from 1985 to 2000 the population doubled to 70,000. This is mainly due to the oil sand is mined in the region. The current population is around 80,000.
According to the colonization history the now present Aruaca was in 1870 a small Indian village. It was located where now the park Calda is. On December 4, 1870 Juan Isidro Daboín arrive in the village. From that date the village started to develop. Neighborhoods were built around the spot where the present cathedral is. In 1899, the relationship between Colombia and Venezuela went to a critical point as soldiers from Venezuela occupy the village. The people where expected they come into the fight in the "1000 days war" on the side of General Foción.
In 1916 the regime is restored by Humberto Gómez and Arévalo Cedeño. The also claimed independence from the current county area and their inhabitants. The republic has never recognized Araucan, and typical of their self-denial and forgetfulness of the region.
In the 50s of the 19th century the area was full of the violence of the guerrillas. Groups such as FARC and ELN had their front. In 1958, Avianca opend a number of regional and national routes. The cities which flown on where Cúcuta, Medellín and Bogotá.
In 1983 started the oil boom for the city. When near an oil well was found. The following year, in 1984, the started to work on getting the oil.
In 1988, the first local elections where held in the city. In 1990 they started to modernize the infrastructure. A dam was built to reduce flooding. The dam is also called dam along the lines of the Dutch. There is also a French company started the construction of sewers.