Situated at the mouth of the Rio Dulce, Livingston (or La Buga as it is known to its' Garifuna inhabitants) is a laid back Caribbean town. Livingston is part of the mainland, however, because it is only accessible by boat and lacks a road connecting to any other town, you'll get a sense of being on an island. Thankfully there are still good connections on to Honduras, Belize and the rest of Guatemala with minimal fuss.
The town has a population of around 17000 inhabitants of mixed cultures and races with majority being of Garifuna ancestry. These people trace their roots back to the Caribbean island of St Vincent, where shipwrecked African slaves mixed with the indigenous Carib in the 17th century. It took the British a long time and a lot of fighting to establish colonial control over St Vincent. In 1796 when they finally succeeded, they decided to deport its surviving 5000 Garifuna to the Honduran island of Roatan, but unfortunately only about 2000 survived the voyage. Because Roatan was too small and infertile to support their population, the Garifuna petitioned the Spanish authorities to be allowed to settle on the mainland. The spanish employed them as soldiers, and they spread along the Caribbean coast with Livingston being their main settlement in Guatemala.
The largest ethnic group in Livingston are the indigenous Q'eqchi' Mayans who live in their own communities, mainly on the river side of town. Other ethnicities living here include Ladinos, Chinese and Hindus.
It won't take you long to find your way around town. the main street, calle Principal, starts at the main dock and goes up hill towards the centre of town. Turn left at the dock and walk 500 meters to find us. The streets have no names!
Livingston has plenty of good places to eat. There are two banks where you can change money, traveller's cheques, or withdraw cash from the ATM's. There is a small health centre in town and several pharmacies and lots of stores selling local handicrafts.