El Salvador | Guatemala

Day 12 : Livingston, Guatemala

Only accessable by boat via the Rio Dulce or by crossing Lago de Ixobel is the unique town of Livingston. It is set apart from the rest of Guatemala due to its fusion of Guatemalan and Caribean culture (Garifuna). Where marimba mixes with Marley. The Garifuna are displaced black Caribbean people who are now strung along the coast from Belize to Northern Nicaragua. The rhythmic life here is hypnotic. Caribean food is excellent and the music strums everywhere with local and historic pride - Garifuna punta rock and reggae.

Approaching Livingston by boat. Not the Caribbean town they show in the posters you expected huh....
Livingston sights. Most buildings are painted bright colors.
For the kiddos....looks comfy. See, kids, love those wooden sets you have!
One of the nicer places in town.
Our Room which we fund by walking around . How's that for a pose ladies? And the rooms keep getting better....
This is public laundry. During the day these are packed with ladies washing clothes. Usually the kids are sitting in it.
Ah, for all you Moms out there...how's this for a safe ride?!

Livingston possesses a cool island feel although it is not an island at all. We had a chance to hang out out with some locals, some freshly made locals and some other travelers....We tasted local drinks, food and even learned how interesting Dutch and Belgian tv shows are. Hillarious. One Dutch show only features new locations for "swaffelen". Ok, this is only for the adults. The term translates to "Turkey slapping". Featuring all the famous buldings one can and have "swaffeled". Look it up, or wait until we get home to explain in more detail. hahahahahahahahah. Enough said.

Livingston. Headed down to the beach for some drinkies.
Hanging out with cervesas and dirty mojitos.
Next stop - A little 2 barstool bar we were glued to for hours. The bartender made us coco-locos.
Ahh, yum, the best Mojito Cubano! Which we have never heard of - until now. Tip: for a real mojito, use dark rum and brown sugar!
Our bartender also had to hop on a rusty bike and go find mint for our Mojitos - be we ate it all.
Mmmmm Coco-loco: coconut milk, sugar-water, rum. Simple, delicious! Who wouldn't want to drink out of a giant harry coconut ball?

We were invited to hang with some locals during their island drumming session, but got all cought up with the Belgians and a local drunk rastafarian who was so loaded he'd start a sentence and never finish. He'd stop mid way and say..."heeeey, oooooooh..." and start another thought. Then he'd laugh so hard, he spit his drink all over everyone. To distarct him we told him we wanted to listen to some Lional Richie, so he was on a mission to find us some. He'd just come back each time and say, "Yah mon....Lional Riiiiiiiichie...yaaaaaah" and give us the thumbs up. Gotta love the Rastafarians!

Livingston by the beach.
Garafuna pride again.
Garafuna influence. The town is clearly divided with Garafunas on one end and Spanish on the other.
The daily grid here. Because it is so far removed from the rest of the country its is treated like an island.

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