Things have gotten substantially quieter at the Lake Izabal’s main south-shore town, which once provided access to El Estor  by way of a ferry boat but which has taken a backseat now that there’s a road to El Estor from Río Dulce .
The main attraction here is the fantastic Denny’s Beach (tel. 5398-0908, www.dennysbeach.com ), a lakeside resort four kilometers east of town, which has grown substantially from its humble beginnings as a restaurant and a few simple cabanas. A wide range of accommodations includes dorms ($7 per person), rustic cabanas ($16–20 d, with shared or private bathroom), beach-house rooms ($20–27 d, with shared/private bath and air-conditioning), beachfront cabanas ($40–67 d, with private bath, air-conditioning, and hot-water showers) or newly added luxurious villas with their own patios and lovely lakeside views ($80–100 d).
The restaurant here has a varied menu in the $3–11 range for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, including excellent seafood, pastas, sandwiches, nachos, quesadillas, and creative shrimp burritos. There’s a fully stocked beachside bar where you can hang out and meet other travelers.
The available activities are as varied as the lodging options and include wakeboarding, horseback riding, beach volleyball, basketball, horseshoes, and Ping Pong. There are trips to the Sierra de Las Minas Biosphere Reserve , Finca El Paraíso , Quiriguá , Río Dulce National Park , and Lívingston , or you can explore a nature trail meandering through the surrounding forests.
The easiest way to get here is by taking a daily water taxi leaving from Bruno’s in Río Dulce between 4 and 4:30 p.m. (call ahead to confirm). By bus, travel along the Caribbean-bound highway (CA-9) and get off at the Las Trincheras Junction (Km. 221), from where you take a connecting minibus for the remaining 15 kilometers northwest to Mariscos.
Once there, look for the Ferretería de Doña Judith, on the road leading out of town toward Playa Dorada. A hotel-owned water taxi can take you from there to the hotel. If you’ve driven your own car, you can also leave it here. The lodge can be reached on VHF channel 63. Many businesses in Mariscos use radios and can contact the lodge for you to arrange a pickup if you get lost along the way or if the water taxi isn’t there.