Tag Archives: Boats

Paradise, Found

16 Mar

There are some places in the world were words can not convey their beauty and the magic of being there. Tulum is one of those places.  I could write forever about the million shades of blue in the water, the perfect white sand that stretches for miles in either direction, the palm trees blowing in the wind, the gorgeous boutique hotels and cabanas that line the beach…. but what I really want to do is just show you how amazing this place is.

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The Green Caribbean

13 Oct

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Izabal, the region where I work, has more protected areas than any other region in Guatemala.  Called the Caribe Verde, or the Green Caribbean, it abounds with breathtaking scenery as far as the eye can see. Part river, part bay, part jungle, and part ocean, Izabal is a unique area teaming with wildlife and inhabited by a diverse mixture of cultures.  Yet just how protected these areas truly are is up for debate.  The government lacks proper resources to ensure that these massive sections of jungle are protected from threats such as deforestation, slash-and-burn farming, and poaching of endangered species.

These threats, combined with an increasing number of tourists who come traipsing through the wildnerness and zooming up the river in motorboats has created a problematic vision of the future and only serve to highlight the importance of creating conservation awareness and fostering environmental education now before it’s too late.

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The Joys of Boat Travel

7 Oct

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Livingston, Guatemala is not an island, yet the only way to get here is by boat.  In many ways, this has helped preserve the local culture and charm, but in other ways it has also limited development and educational opportunities in the area.  To get to a hospital, grocery store, university, or shopping center, you need to take a boat ride.

At first I thought it was lovely going everywhere by boat- what a beautiful concept, right?  However, after living here for a month I have already grown tired of the commute and dealing with all the hustlers down on the dock.  I have also had to deal with quite a few rocky rides through the crashing waves, clutching my laptop to my chest and praying the water doesn’t come overboard.

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Since I’m here working on a project in sustainable tourism, one of the proposals that always comes up is building a road to Livingston to increase the flow of tourists in the area.  While the reality of this happening in the near future is almost non-existent, I can’t help but wonder, would this destroy the place or improve it?  At what point are development projects and improved infrastructure more detrimental to the places they are trying to help then beneficial?