Rio Dulce and Hot Waterfalls
Rio Dulce is on the eastern side of Guatemala, about half way down. The town separates the Lago de Isabel from the el Gofete, which then runs into the Carribean.
There is a hot springs waterfall on the inland side, just 2 miles from the water. We drove the hour or so down the rutted road, and paid our $1 at the gate. We heard to be careful – someone had been robbed on the same road just that morning. There is also a bus that runs up there.
The waterfalls are called el Paraiso, which is on the Finca el Paraiso. A finca is a plantation.
The falls were amazing. Usually hot springs are upwellings; these were hot waterfalls, over 105 degrees Fahrenheit. At the springs we met some new friends - Katerina (Czech) Alex (US) Declan (Irish) Liam (Irish-English).
After the falls, we went down to the Finca el Paraiso hotels, and had Gallos on the lake. That part of the lake is at least 5+ miles wide.
Loaded everyone into the truck, and made it back to town, blowing up some fireworks along the way.
When we got back to the town, we had to hit up the fireworks again and show our European friends a good time. Evidently, you can't even get fireworks in most of Europe. And we learned that girls love sparklers.
That night we partied at the Backpacker's Hotel, right on the water in Rio Dulce. The hotel and bar is owned by a Guatemalan orphanage, and all the profits allegedly go to them. If that sounds weird to you, we agree.
In another twist, the people that go to volunteer at the orphanage first have to work at the bar for a week before they move out to volunteer at the orphanage. Yep, that's right. Weird.
Next morning, took off down the river for Livingston.