Guatemala – The historic city of Antigua and the lively coastal town of Livingston

After the idyllic Lake Atitlan now the beautiful, but very tourist city of Antigua enchanted us. In the former capital of Spanish Central America, we found lovely old colonial buildings and an old Capuchin Monastery.

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Within the city we felt very safe because of the security men on every street corner. If one wanted to visit a tourist attraction outside the city, though, you had to be accompanied by a policeman. As we were anxious to explore one of the city’s vantage points on a hill (there was a geocache hidden there as well), we had to register with the police. However, we were guarded by three (!) police men for this half-hour-trip.

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From Antigua we climbed our first active volcano, Pacaya. After a hike through lush rainforest and a mystical landscape of craters and pumic rock, we finally reached the glowing lava stream. While some people were busy roasting marshmallows, we shot hundreds of photos and videos.

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After so much culture and volcanoes, we were now beach-ready and therefore took the bus to the East Coast of Guatemala to Rio Dulce. Once there we took the boat further downstream to Livingston, which is known for its lively and musical activity as well as the good food of the Garifuna people. Caribbean Garifuna are fishermen who populate many areas in the vicinity.

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Therefore we felt hardly as being still in Guatemala, but in a totally new culture. For dinner, we enjoyed the delicious local seafood, which was accompanied by young children making music with their drums. The next day we explored the area and saw the beach and palm trees as well as a colorful cemetery, jungles, rivers and waterfalls.

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After this short Caribbean taste, we wanted more and so we went right after that to Honduras to dive.