Enjoying a superb setting overlooking the Bahía de Amatique, LÍVINGSTON offers a unique fusion of Guatemalan and Caribbean culture where marimba mixes with Marley. The town acts as a hub for both the displaced Garífuna, or Black Caribs and also for the Q’eqchi’ Maya of the Río Dulce region.
Lívingston is undoubtedly one of the most fascinating places in Guatemala, but travellers’ opinions about it tend to be sharply divided: many enjoy the languid rhythm of life and Lívingston’s slightly ramshackle appeal while others just find the town shabby. Whatever your take, Lívingston certainly offers a welcome break from mainstream Ladino culture: Carib food is generally excellent and varied, and Garífuna punta rock and reggae make a pleasant change from merengue and salsa. Another excellent reason to come to Lívingston is to take the spectacular trip through the Río Dulce gorge.
The general atmosphere is pretty chilled, but not unaffected by the pressures of daily life in Central America. Whilst Lívingston is not a threatening place, and there are no particular security concerns, the town does have its share of small-time hustlers eager to sell weed to travellers or scrounge a beer.