There's a cute little hideaway approximately halfway between Rio Dulce town and Livingston on the beautiful Rio Dulce called Finca Tatin. It's family owned with hammocks under a big rancho and bungalows or dormitory-style for sleeping. Home-cooked, inexpensive meals are served to the guests and there are a bazillion things to do while you're there; hiking through the jungle, kayaking down the river, swimming in river or relaxing in a hammock with a Gallo. Depending on the season there are lots of other things to do too.
You can take a cabin cruiser from Rio Dulce and do it as a lovely overnight trip. The couple who run this are so lovely and the cruiser is called Nemo. They started this about 3 months ago and they are so good at it. Freddie, a Livingstonian, drives the boat and Inga, his girlfriend and partner, is the hostess. You get a great dinner and breakfast on the boat and you get a double room to stay overnight. The food is great and make special effort to cater for vegetarians. They have a few surprises planned and its just brilliant. In the morning, Freddie takes you on a little boat into the little lagoons and to see wildlife, flora and fauna. Freddie made the trip all the more memorable by pointing out Iguanas in the forest on the way there.
Costs $40 per person and much better than taking a private lancha for $100. The collective boats costs Q100, but its over in 2 hours and you don't get the benefit of having a local man show you the sights.
We only took a 3hr trip on the lake and maybe that wasn't enough.
The boat takes local passengers too and took off to Livingstone where there was a short stop.
We came back to the Biotope of the Manatees (some kind of big sea cows) but didn't see any.
The next stop was at Agua Caliente (a hot water spring with the terrible smell of rotten eggs).
The third stop was at a nice Spanish Castillo.
The reason why you do this is the lush jungle around the lake.Lovely.
well, if you're in rio dulce, you're going to go to livingston. the canyon that you pass through, el golfete, is billed as the grand canyon of guatemala. well, don't believe the hype. but it is pretty and it's a fun ride past jungle, hot springs and small dug out canoes.
livingston is not too interesting if you've been to belize. we stopped there for two hours and i was bored out of my mind. it was very small, and everyone was asleep on their feet. i found a small place to eat, woke up the cooks who were sleeping in back, and slowly ate a meal, trying to kill time.
on the ride back, you can see the sunset, which is quite pretty and pleasant.
Lago Izabal looks to be a luxurious resort for rich natives and Americans.
The luxury yachts around the lago - not for our budget -were proof of this