We left Flores and continued south to Rio Dulce, located at the east end of Lago de Izabel as it narrows down to the river which flows out to Amatique Bay near Livingston.
We found a nice place to stay at Mar Marina, complete with swimming pool where we hung out for a few days.
Rio Dulce is where the lake narrows at the outflow of the river down to the Caribbean Sea. This is a nice community with quite the blend of locals and Expats from all over the world that have either moved or are wintering here. There are many little side bays and channels in and around this area which are only accessible by ‘Launche’, this is a local water taxi service using Pangas.
The first full day here we had organised a trip to Livingston located on the coast within Amatique Bay. They picked us up at the Marina at 9:30am, from here we visited Castillo de San Felipe, this is an old Spanish Fort located right at the narrow built to protect the waterways.
From here we went to the local taxi stand to pickup more people who were heading to other locations along the river or to Livingston and beyond.
Along the waterway we stopped at some Hot Springs (Agua Calientes), passing lots of locals that live on the river, some were selling trinkets, others fishing or just commuting. There were also many residences along the route to the coast.
Along the waterway we came across a Canadian sailing boat. While in Livingston we actually met the crew, who were a family from Montreal, Quebec. This family had taken a year off from work and school and had sailed down to the Caribbean, visiting some of the Islands and where now here starting their trip back north for the beginning of the school year.
There were a couple of boats along the way that had seen better days.
After a couple of hour boat ride, we arrived in Livingston and disembarked, some passengers were continuing on to Belize and other destinations, we on the other hand had 2.5hrs to see the town before the boat returned to take us back to Rio Dulce. We wandered into town, strolled around. Livingston has a Caribbean feel to it; it is very much a Garifuna community.
The Garifuna (/ˌɡɑːriːˈfuːnə/ GAR-ee-FOO-nə; pl. Garinagu in Garifuna) are an indigenous people originally from the Caribbean island of St. Vincent who speak an eponymous Arawakan language.
The garifuna also called the Black Caribs are the descendants of the yellow Caribs, Island Caribs, and Africans who intermarried and created a large populous civilisation on the Anglo-Caribbean island of St. Vincent, now called Saint Vincent and the Grenadines in the Windward Islands in the British West Indies in the Lesser Antilles.
Garifuna communities still live in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, however after the Carib Wars with the British and peace the treaties were made between the British and the Black Caribs, over 5000 were exiled to Honduras, with smaller populations in Belize, Guatemala, and Nicaragua. A large number have moved to the United States. (Wikipedia)
They have some funky health drinks here!
We found a place with homemade cooking for lunch, Catherine had some kind of local grilled chicken with salad while Stewart had the local specialty; seafood soup.
It certainly a warm day here, even the local police found it hot.
We went back Rio Dulce for a couple of days, while there we had dinner at the Sundog Café.
When we decided to leave, we head to some Hot Springs at El Paraiso, these are actually hot waterfalls.
The local kids were enthralled with our tiny home.
We had them line up to take a look inside. When leaving we gave them each a choice of which colour of pencil crayon they wanted.
Next: Semuc Chempey and Antigua