Here’s Why Belize Deserves To Be On Top Of Your Travel Bucket List
One of the world’s top travel destinations, Belize offers captivating and spectacular attractions and a potpourri of fun-filled activities and adventure.
Here are 13 reasons why you will want to spend your vacation in Belize this year:
Overall, the climate in Belize is sub-tropical, making it the best vacation destination all year round. Its temperature normally ranges from 50 degrees Fahrenheit to 95 degrees Fahrenheit. The coolest months are from November to January and the warmest months are from May to September.
Once home to over 2 million Mayas, Belize is the heart of the famous ancient Maya world. The Maya civilization has left its permanent mark in the country’s landscape, leaving Maya’s legacy in numerous ancient structures like temples, pyramids, science, agriculture, palaces and mathematics. Among its famous Mayan sites are Altun Ha, Xunantunich, Caracol, Santa Rita, Cahal Pech, Lamanai, Barton Creek Cave, Cerros, Lubaantun, and Nim Li Punit.
Belize is rich in diverse cultures, with a mixture of Maya, Garinagu, Spanish, Indian, Mennonites, German and many other cultures like Chinese and Lebanese. Experience all these different cultures in one place.
Being one of the fundamental parts of Mayan religion, caves are inextricably bound to Belize history. Beneath the country’s surface, explore some of the world’s most extensive cave systems with stunning lime rock formations. Most caves still have visible signs of previous visitations, activities and relics. A famous cave to visit on your Belize vacation is Actun Tunichil Muknal.
Belize diverse cultures are also reflected on its food and drinks, making Belizean food Central America’s most varied cuisine. Its locals take advantage of the country’s abundance in seafood such as shrimps, conch and snappers. Chinese food is also available in most places in Belize.
Belize Barrier Reef
A World Heritage Site and the one of the largest barrier reefs in both Northern and Western Hemispheres, the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef spans over 185 miles of Belize’s blue waters. Visitors come to explore the barrier reef, islands and over 400 white sand beaches. It has over 100 varieties of corals, fish species and other marine life.
Belize’s Incredible Flora
Tourists who want to venture inland flock to Belize to explore its lush rainforest, which is heavily populated with thousands of varieties of plants, trees and flowers. You will find 250 varieties of orchids, flowering bromeliads and aroids, colorful poinsettias, hibiscuses and many other rare and unique flowers and trees.
Belize’s Incredible Fauna
There are at least 543 varieties of bird species in Belize. Most of them are found in the rainforest. The most spotted animal in the forest include the wildcats, margay, monkeys, large rodents, mountain cow, ocelot and pumas.
The Best Scuba Diving in the World
Considered one of the best scuba diving spots in the world, Belize has three open to ocean atolls. Its barrier reef offers superb sites for diving, which include the Turneffe Island, Gladden Spit, Glover’s Reef Atoll and Lighthouse Reef Atolls.
The Best Snorkeling in the world
Belize is also appropriately considered one of the best snorkeling destinations in the world. Among its excellent snorkeling locations include the Shark-Ray Alley, Caye Caulker and Hol Chan Marine Reserve.
Cacao Harvesting and Chocolate Making at the Maya Communities in Toledo
In Belize, you will have the opportunity to learn how to make chocolate from scratch. It would be a very interesting experience to harvest the raw cacao and make it a chocolate using the same process that Mayans did for more than a thousand-year.
Stunning Remote Un-inhabited Islands
Belize is also a home to over 200 islands and most of them are uninhabited and untouched. Venture out these islands and experience the eternal deserted island fantasy.
Just as many things to do in Belize are the variety of options for cool places to stay, which include luxury resorts, hotels, condominiums, vacation rentals, guesthouses, live-aboard vessels, campgrounds, and more. One of the best places to stay in Belize is at Cahal Pech Village Resort. It is one of the largest resorts in the Cayo District and offers a jaw-dropping panoramic view of the Belize River Valley and surrounding villages. It also offers its guests ultimate privacy with an award-winning service. With the variety of accommodations to choose from, Cahal Pech Village Resort is surely a cool place to suit your taste and need.
Overall, Belize is the perfect getaway place for everyone looking for great attractions and adventure.
Frequently Asked Questions about vacations in Belize
Here’s a Q&A; with Eric Wechter, the editor of Fodor’s Belize, 4th edition, and Lan Sluder, the author. Wechter is also the Belize expert for Fodor’s 80 degrees initiative, an interactive planner for finding a warm-weather escape best suited for your personality.
Why are airfares to Belize so high, and how can we find cheaper flights? Air service is somewhat limited and is mostly from a few hubs in the United States. To find the most affordable flights, stay flexible on your dates, avoid peak holiday travel (around Christmas and Easter), and sign up for Internet specials and e-mail fare alerts on the airlines flying to Belize—currently United, American, US Airways, (Southwest Airlines in October 2015), and TACA. Another option is to fly into Cancún, which usually has good air deals, and take the ADO bus to Belize.
We want to spend time at the beach and also in the jungle. Where should we go? On a first and relatively brief visit to Belize, sample the best “surf and turf” by splitting your time between one of the popular beach areas—Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker, Hopkins, or Placencia—and the rest in the Cayo, which has the largest concentration of popular mainland activities.
Is Belize a safe place to visit? The best answer is “Yes, but…” Most visitors say they feel quite safe in Belize (except, they say, in some areas of Belize City). Tourist Police patrol areas of Belize City, Placencia, Ambergris Caye, and elsewhere, and many hotels and jungle lodges have security guards. Out of the hundreds of thousands of visitors, the numbers who are victims of any kind of crime is perhaps a few hundred. So, while this is still a developing country, enjoy yourself and follow standard travel precautions: Don’t wander into areas that don’t feel safe; avoid deserted beaches and streets after dark; and don’t flash expensive jewelry or cash.
Got any tips for visiting the Mayan Ruins? Altun Ha, the ruin closest to Belize City, gets crowds of cruise ship day-trippers; so if you go, try to avoid days when there are several cruise ships in port. On your visit to Tikal (in Guatemala), stay at one of the three lodges at the park if possible—you’ll be able to visit the ruins early in the morning or late in the afternoon, when howler monkeys and other animals are active and most day visitors have left.
What about mosquitoes? Pack plenty of bug juice with DEET. Mosquitoes are especially bad around Cerros and at the ruins near Punta Gorda.
How physically fit should I be to enjoy an adventure vacation in Belize? Adventure vacations commonly are split into “soft” and “hard” adventures. Hard adventures, such as strenuous jungle treks and extended caving trips, usually require excellent physical conditioning and previous experience. Most hiking, biking, canoeing-kayaking, cave tubing, snorkeling, brief cave tours, and similar soft adventures can be enjoyed by persons of all ages who are in good health and are accustomed to a reasonable amount of exercise. A little honesty goes a long way—recognize your own level of physical fitness and discuss it with the tour operator before signing on.
I want to try something fun and different, but not too challenging. Any suggestions? An activity you’ll find in few places outside Belize is cave tubing. You drift down a river, usually the Caves Branch River in Cayo District, in a large rubber inner tube. At certain points the river goes underground, and you float through eerie underground cave systems, some with Mayan artifacts still in place. The only light is from headlamps.
Where are the best areas for spotting exotic birds? Once you see toucans at Tikal or the hard-to-find motmot in the Cayo, you’re sure to get caught up in the excitement of searching for some of Belize’s 600 species of birds. Many Belizeans know all their local birds and where the best places are to find them. Crooked Tree, Chan Chich at Gallon Jug, the New River and New River Lagoon near Lamanai, and much of the Toledo District in the Deep South are wonderful areas for bird-watching; keep your eyes peeled to the treetops and don’t forget your binoculars.
Of all the incredible outdoor options, what’s one experience I shouldn’t miss? Actun Tunichil Muknal (ATM) is more than a caving experience. It’s a visit to the Xibalba, the Mayan underworld. You’ll see ancient Mayan artifacts and human skeletons. While not cheap and requiring a little hiking and swimming, the ATM trip is one-of-a-kind. Many visitors consider it the highlight of their entire Central American experience. Due to the risk of damage to the cave and to the priceless Mayan artifacts there, we’re not sure how much longer the Belize government is going to permit access to ATM. Go, while you have the chance. You won’t regret it.
If you have questions about traveling to Belize or need help in booking a trip, please email Lloyd Alvarez, our Reservations Manager at info(@)cahalpech.com.
The above interview is courtesy of Budget Travel. The original post can be found here.