Our Belize Top 10

Wildlife, Caves, and People

Our Belize Top 10

Wildlife, Caves, and People

After spending 2-weeks in Belize, we thought we’d share our top 10 favorite adventures with you. Most of them we did. Others we could not fit in, but wished we had the time.

# 1. Garifuna Communities

We loved our time in Placencia which is on the beaten path but has nevertheless maintained it’s Garifuna roots. Hopkins and Punta Gorda offer an even more authentic immersion into Garifuna culture.

# 2. Caving

Belize has amazing caves to explore. Don’t miss the ATM cave, which is an amazing caving experience. But what makes it even more amazing is the fact that the cave is essentially an untouched Mayan archeological site, complete with the intact skeletons of people sacrificed by the Mayans in times of environmental stress, including droughts. Other good caves include Crystal Cave and Dark Cave which involves rappelling into a sink hole.

# 3. Diving and Snorkeling

The atolls and cayes of Belize offer amazing scuba diving and snorkeling. Ambergis Caye and Caye Caulker are the most popular bases for diving, but Hopkins and Placencia are also good, offering fewer crowds. Like many reefs, the Belize Barrier Reef is gradually dying due to pollutants but the diving is still good. Highlights include diving with Whale Sharks in southern Belize (at the right time of year) and the Blue Hole/Lighthouse Reef trip which is amazing.

# 8. Birding

We are certainly not birders but we like a cool eagle or heron or owl or stork when we see one. Belize offers some of the best birding in the world, including Crooked Tree (see our trip report for more info).

# 9. San Ignacio

We really liked San Ignacio. There’s lots to do during the day using San Ignacio as a base, including the ATM Cave Tour. But to us, it also offered an interesting mix of cultures, from Creole to Garifuna to Mayan.

# 10. The People of Belize

We did not have time to go to the deep south but have hard good great things about the Mayan villages in the area including Big Falls and San Miguel. Don’t miss this if you haven’t had the opportunity to explore Mayan areas in other countries like Guatemala or Mexico.

# 4. The Hummingbird Highway

Sure, the Hummingbird Highway is just a highway, but its scenery is stunning. In addition, there’s all sorts of things to do along the Hummingbird Highway, including adventure parks, hiking opportunities and swimming in cenotes, e.g., the Blue Hole. If you love ice cream, don’t miss the Country Barn near Belmopan.

# 5. The Toledo District

We did not have time to go to the deep south but have hard good great things about the Mayan villages in the area including Big Falls and San Miguel. Don’t miss this if you haven’t had the opportunity to explore Mayan areas in other countries like Guatemala or Mexico.

# 6. Mayan Ruins

The ruins of Lamanai are awesome, as is the boat tour to get there. There are also great ruins out of San Ignacio, including Caracol.

# 7. Jaguar Tracking

The chance of seeing a jaguar in the wild on any given day in the jungle of Belize is fairly low, but the chance of them seeing you is very high. One of the best places to see a jaguar in the wild is the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary. Fortunately or unfortunately is as close to a jaguar that we got (at the Belize Zoo) although Karl did hear one in the wild in Tikal, Guatemala (just across the border from Belize).

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