Livingston Journals

Welcome to "La Buga"

A June 2000 trip to Livingston by LoCho

Welcome to Livingston Photo, Livingston, Guatemala More Photos
Quote: Livingston, located on the Carribbean side of Guatemala, is a small city from which you can find tours of the Rio Dulce, and Las Siete Altares.

Welcome to "La Buga"

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Overview

Welcome to Livingston Photo, Livingston, Guatemala
Quote:
Livingston is an interesting town because there are very few tourists compared to the number of locals. There are a few day trips that you can make reservations for, but people watching is also fun.Quick Tips: I didn't know this before I went to Guatemala, but you really need to speak Spanish pretty well. Luckily I took some college courses and had brought my dictionary with me so we got along all right. As soon as you debark in Livingston you will be approached by boat operators asking if you want to go anywhere -- but few of them speak English. We found that even the hotel employees didn't speak any English.Best Way To Get Around: Walking is about the only form of transportati...Read More
Quote:
El Tucan Dugu is the biggest and nicest hotel in Livingston. As you approach the city by boat you will see this hotel located right on a hill by the ocean.

The rooms are large and most have a nice view of the ocean from the balcony. One of the most interesting things, to me, is that there was a colony of leaf-cutter ants parading outside of our hotel room door. They were very entertaining as they lugged massive (compared to the ants) pieces of leaves around.

El Tucan Dugu has a large, clean pool, and nicely groomed grounds. There is a restaurant located in the hotel where you can choose to have your meals, if you wish.

We had a telephone in our room, but no TV.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 5, 2001

El Tucan Dugu
Livingston
Livingston, Guatemala

El Tucan Dugu

Restaurant

Quote:
El Tucan Dugu has a large dining area with an ocean view. The restaurant is open to non-hotel guests, and it usually isn't very busy.

The menu at El Tucan is quite varied -- you can order basic sandwiches, pasta dishes, continental breakfast items, etc. There are also Central American options, like ceviche or rice and beans.

I found the taste of the food adequate, but not delicious. I definitely do not recommend ordering seafood there, the ceviche I ordered didn't taste fresh. For dinner one night I had spaghetti and meatballs, and that was ok.

I did enjoy the restaurant's atmosphere, and the prices are reasonable.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on February 8, 2001

El Tucan Dugu
Livingston
Livingston, Guatemala

La Playa Blanca

Attraction

Quote:
Guatemala has a small Caribbean coastline, and La Playa Blanca is one of the few sandy beaches on the East side of the country. The name sounds beautiful, and tour operators will try to sell you trips there, but it is really quite unimpressive. The only thing to do at La Playa Blanca is lay out or maybe wade in the ocean. But the sand is not that nice and the water isn't that clean (it is warm, though). I entertained myself for a little while by feeding part of my lunch to a mangy dog that looked like it was about to die, and the rest of the time I read a book and took a nap. Our stay at the beach was about 2 hours, and it felt like an eternity. I wouldn't go back if I had the op...Read More

Member Rating 1 out of 5 on February 5, 2001

La Playa Blanca
Livingston
Livingston, Guatemala

Las Siete Altares

Attraction

Quote:
Las Siete Altares (The Seven Altars) is a series of 7 waterfalls. Some of the falls are more spectacular than others, and the further up you get, the more impressive the sight. Most guides will take you by boat to a small beach from which you can hike through a jungly path to get to some of the waterfalls, but you will probably only get to number 3 or 4. During our time at the falls, I was able to climb to a couple of the next levels, but it is kind of treacherous -- be careful! One of our guides was a ten-year-old boy who enjoyed jumping off the rocks into the waterfall pools. It looked fun, but I wasn't feeling particularly risky that day. You can arrange for hikes tha...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 6, 2001

Las Siete Altares
Livingston
Livingston, Guatemala

The Rainy Season

Story/Tip

Quote:
During summer in Northern America, Guatemala is having its rainy season. It is not the ideal time to travel to Central America; but as a teacher, it is the easiest time for me to get away. My two days in Livingston were fortunately not too wet. In general, in both Belize and Guatemala, I found that although it rained about every other day, it only rained in the evenings and for about 10 minutes at a time. Also, the rain is warm and kind of enjoyable sometimes. The 10 minute rain intervals were interesting for a California girl, like me. It would POUR buckets of water and then suddenly stop! I recommend packing a light rain jacket if you are traveling during rainy season -- ...Read More
Quote:
Livingston has limited services available since it is very isolated -- only reachable by boat. There are a few places that advertise tours to Las Siete Altares and La Playa Blanca for about $11 US. This price includes lunch (sandwich and a banana) and that's pretty much as luxurious as it gets. Also, the guides who take you to the destinations won't speak much English, so it's not like a tour where you learn all about the history and ecology of the area -- it's just a ride. It will help if you speak fluent Spanish, because your hotel employees can point you in the right direction -- they may even know people that lead tours that don't advertise publicly. If I had it to d...Read More