Lake Izabal
Lago de Izabal, also known as the Golfo Dulce, is the largest lake in Guatemala
Guatemala is a country in Central America bordered by Mexico to the north and west, the Pacific Ocean to the southwest, Belize to the northeast, the Caribbean to the east, and Honduras and El Salvador to the southeast...

 with a surface area of 589.6 km² (145,693 acres or 227.6 sq mi) and a maximum depth is 18 meters (59 ft). The Polochic River
Polochic River
The Polochic River is a 194 km long river in eastern Guatemala. It flows eastwards through a deep valley and flows into Lake Izabal at . The river is navigable for length of 30 km to Panzós. It was used many years ago to transport coffee and timber, but most commercial transport in the river valley...

 is the largest river that drains into the lake. The lake which is only a metre above sea level drains into the Gulf of Honduras
Gulf of Honduras
The Gulf or Bay of Honduras is a large inlet of the Caribbean Sea, indenting the coasts of Belize, Guatemala, and Honduras. From north to south, it runs for approximately 200 km from Dangriga, Belize, to La Ceiba, Honduras....

 of the Caribbean Sea
Caribbean Sea
The Caribbean Sea is a sea of the Atlantic Ocean located in the tropics of the Western hemisphere. It is bounded by Mexico and Central America to the west and southwest, to the north by the Greater Antilles, and to the east by the Lesser Antilles....

 through the smaller Golfete Dulce which is at sea level and the navigable Rio Dulce.

The well preserved colonial Castillo de San Felipe
Castillo de San Felipe
The Castillo de San Felipe de Lara is a Spanish colonial fort located at the entrance to Lake Izabal in eastern Guatemala. Lake Izabal is connected with the Caribbean Sea via the Dulce River and El Golfete lake...

 de Lara guarded this lake against pirate attacks, and there are some ancient sunken ships nearby. It is home to several species including the manatee
Manatees are large, fully aquatic, mostly herbivorous marine mammals sometimes known as sea cows...

, jaguar
The jaguar is a big cat, a feline in the Panthera genus, and is the only Panthera species found in the Americas. The jaguar is the third-largest feline after the tiger and the lion, and the largest in the Western Hemisphere. The jaguar's present range extends from Southern United States and Mexico...

, spider monkey
Spider monkey
Spider monkeys of the genus Ateles are New World monkeys in the subfamily Atelinae, family Atelidae. Like other atelines, they are found in tropical forests of Central and South America, from southern Mexico to Brazil...

 and howler monkey
Howler monkey
Howler monkeys are among the largest of the New World monkeys. Fifteen species are currently recognised. Previously classified in the family Cebidae, they are now placed in the family Atelidae. These monkeys are native to South and Central American forests...

, and is a wonderful place for birdwatching.

External links

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