Blogs from Livingston, Caribbean Coast, Guatemala, Central America Caribbean


Thurs 15 November - Day 20 - Rio Dulce Up for a 6am departure, we drove in a minivan on to the river town of Rio Dulce where we overnight in Hotel Catamaran cabins right on the water. At the end of the 3 ½ hour drive through small-holdings farm country and coming across small villages on the way, we arrived at the little harbour and our group boarded 2 boats, both with 115hp outboard motors with a canopy. The weather was clearing with only high clouds remaining. We were hope for good weather. The boat trip to our accommodation took only 15 minutes where we unloaded our luggage and stored them in the bar/reception area. Within 30 minutes we started our boat tour along the 23 kilometre stretch of waterway to Livingston which allowed us ... read more
Catamaran Hotel near Rio Dulce Guatemala - Sunset (3)
Bay of Amatique -Caribbean - at mouth of Rio Dulce Guatemala - Castle protecting the mouth of the river (6)
Catamaran Hotel near Rio Dulce Guatemala - Sunset (1)

On Friday morning, I woke up in my little jungle bungalow and had to pack and prepare for our day on the lake and then visiting the small Caribbean town of Livingston. After breakfast, we all piled into a little speedboat and set out for a lovely day on Lake Izabal. Cruising through mangroves and passing by colorful lake front beach shacks, it felt like paradise but also, as though I had left Guatemala and been transported to Jamaica. We arrived in Livingston, a sleepy little town with a super relaxed vibe and a really interesting history. It's located in Eastern Guatemala and sits at the mouth of the Rio Dulce at the Gulf of Honduras. It's well-known for its unusual mix of Garifuna, Afro-Caribbean. Maya and Ladino (mestizo) people and culture and several languages are ... read more

Dear All Greetings from the middle of the Guatemalan jungle! I am writing this one from the most amazing of eco-lodges, deep within the Guatemalan jungle, on the banks of the Rio Tatin, a small tributary which feeds into the larger Rio Dulce. It’s the Finca Tatin, and it’s just wonderful. I am currently lying on my bed, writing this, with a solar fan on as there’s only mains electricity here for a few hours every evening. I’m in a jungle hut, with insect-netted windows on all walls, surrounded by sounds of numerous types of cicadas and whirring insects – this morning I awoke to a cacophony of different bird noises – and this evening I just saw my very first fire-fly – wow, it’s a magical place! I believe I last wrote on a bus ... read more
Jungle Hike
Hurricane Earl Approaching

Our Arrival We arrived at the dock in Livingston at 12:15pm. The street in front of the port is the main street and there are several hotels on the road to the left from the port. Where We Stayed Hotel El Viajero - a few mins walk along the waterfront road to the left. We were quoted Q60 for a double room but charged Q70 a night plus an extra Q5 on check out. Room had its own bathroom and internet. There is a bar at the river side of the hotel which sold Q10 litre Brahva's. When we stayed the town had no power for a couple of days bar a few hours one afternoon and the room got really hot at night as we couldn't use the fan. What We Did Walked to Los ... read more

This is how we crossed the border at Corinto from Honduras to Guatemala and travelled to Livingston. 1. We left Roli's Place in Omoa at 8:05 and walked the 15mins back to the main highway to catch the bus coming from Puerto Cortes to the Guatemalan border at Corinto. The bus stop is signed and just to the right of the road out of town. 2. A bus to Corinto arrived at 8:25am. It cost L45 and arrived at the border at 9:35am. The bus drops you off by some restaurants. Walk over the bridge and through a passport check to a big building on the left for an exit stamp. There was no charge and no questions were asked. They took the yellow copy of your immigration form which was stapled into our passports when ... read more

Am drifting down the sweet Rio Dulce towards Livingston on the Carribbean on board a 43ft catamaran having spent the night experiencing coffin like conditions in my (thankfully) double berth in one of the keels! But I put this behind me. Its 6am only the crew and I are up and I am treated to daybreak with the local fishermen casting their nets around me from their tiny dugouts. The sun is rising and the jungle is awakening with bird calls. As the river narrows into the canyon before the port of Livingston, cranes and herons eyeball me from their overhanging roosts and black pelicans treat me to a fly past. Wow! Right now I wouldn’t be anywhere else, maybe I’m a Carribbean kind of woman. In Livingston the rasta locks of young travelling companion attracted ... read more
Beautiful Rio Dulce
Waterfalls and hot springs
Floating down the river

We're now in sleepy Livingstone, home to the Garifuna commmunity, the only Black-Caribbean inhabitants of Guatemala. They qre descendents of runaway slaves who mixed with indigenous peoples in the Caribbean. In the eighteenth century they were then forcibly moved to Roatan, off Honduras, by the British, before fanning out over the next two hundred years to the coasts of Honduras, Guatemala and Belize. Complicated. Livingstone is pretty chilled and perhaps a little shabby but I do rather like it, it's at the mouth of a large river, only accesible by boat and you can watch pelicans hunting from the hammocks in our little hostel's garden. We have just come from an island just next to Roatan, Utila, home to more Garifuna but also a more recent colonist- lunatics. To put it in context, Utila is a ... read more
End of course night on Utila
TreeTanic Detail

After a (blissfully) uneventful journey from Peru, I arrived in Guatemala city on saturday evening. Once Imy had arrived from London, we got our transfer straight out of GC (murder capital of guatemala anyone??) to Antigua. Antigua (not to be confused with its caribbean beachside counterpart) is a beautiful colonial town in the south of the country. Waking up to a breakfast of eggs, plantain and refried beans (the latter of which would be a common theme over the next few weeks), we enbarked on what can only be described as the ultimate exercise in time management, namely how to see as many sights as possible in Guatemala in 10 days. We headed straigt out for lonely planet guided tour of the town (not aided by the lonely planet kindle font size which seems to have ... read more

What a week! It has been a time of swift travelling, more Mayan ruins and yet more idyllic Caribbean beaches. I'm currently in the tiny Caribbean outpost of Livingston, Guatemala a curious blend of Latin America and Africa nestled on the Bay of Honduras. A few hundred years ago a slave ship bound for the States got blown off course and the few hundred slaves on board managed to arrive on this bit of land between the sea and the dense jungles of Izabal. They are called the Garifuna, and have a unique culture most famous for a rowdy, reggae-infused music called the punta. Livingston itself is a bit dirty and touristy. Its location on the mouth of a freshwater river called the Rio Dulce means there is awesome fish and seafood everywhere, and the local ... read more
Caye Caulker

My grand plan for today was to take a collectivo boat from San Filipe to Livingston and back again to see the sights. I ended up sharing a boat with a family from Belgium who were destined for a balanerio known as the Siete Alteras which is a charming series of rimstone pools in a small creek running through the jungle. This was a little beyond Livingston so it cost a little extra but I'm glad that I went. Livingston wasn't much to see but it was worth the two hours that we spent there. I was amazed that there were so many cars in a place that is not connected to the rest of Guatemala by any road that I know of. The trip was incredibly scenic with lots to see and do along the ... read more

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