The Castle of San Felipe is on Lake Izabal in Guatemala, at the heighest point of the village Morales. In general, to take a tour of the Rio Dulce to Livingston from Morales, the boatmen would take the boat back before proceeding forwards, so that the toursits can see the castle of San Felipe from the sea. It once served as a fortress to defend Guatemala from maritime invasions by the Rio Dulce. When you're in the Caribbean coast of Guatemala, and the sweet river water is pulled, if you go up, you will come to Lake Izabal, which is now a favorite place for long distance sailing. Why not come here to stay for a week? It's sheltered from Wind currents and the coastal breeze. Back then, ships would enter the river to find sweet rest and peace, however if they were not welcome, the castle was used to reject them. Another way to get to the castle is to drive from Morales, or go on foot, which is a rather long, but beautiful walk. There's not much to see once you get there, there's no museum or anything, but it's still interesting to see the ruins of the castle, and it acts as a nice playground for children.
All in Lake Izabal, Guatemala depend on it. Today went well, with nothing going wrong, You could see the happiness in everyone.Here you can fish well, live well... Life here is wonderful. It was a perfect day for all residents and we're very happy here.
The Golfete is a part of the Dulce River, near Morales in Guatemala, which can be discovered going by boat from Morales to the Garifuna village of Livingston. It is a very and wild natural area which still atracts many bird lovers and other mammalsfrom are lured in by the River Basin and Mayan communities living around the river. Eco-tourism is developing in Guatemala in a very positive way, helping to preserve not only the environment, but also the traditional lifestyle of the communities. When Morales salts, first see the natural beauty of Golfete, water lilies on the river, walk a little in the mangrove creeks that are thrown to the main river, and then they bring to communities to see such as houses and how they live. The people, know as Q'eqchi live have lived by the river for hundreds of years. The houses are elevated to avoid flooding. An interesting project is Ak Temanit, which is near the Eco Hotel near the Finca Tatin. It's managed by the community, and all funds go towards the same project. It Sells arts and crafts, souvenirs manufactured by wood and natural resources of the forest. There is also a volunteer hospital ship that sails down the river to heal children who can not move so easily.
Rio Dulce is located in the area of Izabal, between Lake Izabal and Amatique Bay andit's about 43km long. It is one of the first protected areas in Guatemala since 1955. In this river you can see many Jacanas, a rare bird with long legs that are unique in that they can walk on the vegetation in the water. It's known as water cock or Mexican cock in this area and it's very normal to see these birds walking among the abundant water lilies.
The Machacas Chocón biotope is a wonderful protected nature reserve, that lies to the east of Guatemala. It is in the town of Livingston. Declared a protected area in the 90s, with the goal of preserving the manatees in their natural environment. The whole area of the river basin which was preserved, part of which is within the Rio Dulce National Park. It's near the sea, but in an area where several rivers meet. The weather is warm, you'll find hundreds of species of birds, more than 30 different mammals, lots of reptiles and almost 100 different species of fish. To get there, catch a boat from Morales. Buses depart daily from Guatemala City to Rio Dulce, everyone who goes to Flores get out in Peten too. Then ask a boatman to take you to biotope manatee. There are very few manatees as they are endangered, and it's unlikely to see one, but it is a very nice natural area to explore, the landscapes are amazing, you are in the middle of the jungle, everything is very green, and you are surrounded by birds and fish. A boat costs 10 euros per person and generally in Morales a boat will hold up to 12 people.
One of the most beautiful routes in Guatemala, is to go by boat up the Rio Dulce,through Lake Izabal, until you get to Livinston on the Caribbean coast of the country. Regular transport does not go from Morales (which some call "Rio Dulce", but that's the name of the lake, not the city) to Livingston. Taking a speedboat from Puerto Barriosto Livingston takes only 20 mins. For tourists, and people who are staying on the river, take a boat from Morales. It's a bit more expensive, but is a better, more pleasant experience! Here we can see the manatee biotope and if we're lucky other native animals moving around. Then the boatman goes by some villages, so you can see how people live on the lake. Most live in straw huts on the water, not in the sweet river, but tributary streams. You can see raccoons, and lots of birds. Then the scenery becomes more dramatic, we can see narrow gorges, where nobody livesand which feels like a real adventure. We stopped for a swim in a hot spring there. And after an hour and a half, reached the town of Livingston.