Travel Guide and Tips for Belize

Have you ever picked a random country you don't know much about and decide you want to go there? It's not just me, right? Well I did just that. And picked Belize. 

Where to stay:
The biggest thing you'll have to decide is which part of Belize you want to visit and where you'll want to stay. Here's a great guide of the different regions. After a bit more reading and research we picked Ambergris Caye. You can get there by plane or ferry from Belize City. The ferry takes about an hour and half but it's just a fraction of the price of the 20 minute plane ride. We stayed at Paradise Villas because it was very reasonably priced, had a full kitchen, air conditioning, wifi, and centrally located so we could get around easily. We were going to rent bikes but ended up just walking everywhere. If you stay further north or south on the island I'd recommend renting a golf cart. Also note there's Wifi just about everywhere. It's not the best connection, but hey, it works. The best spots for a good connection? Coffee Bar (central), Feliz (north), Marbucks (north), and Rum + Bean (south)!

Where to eat
Grab meat pies and a fry jack from Boogie's Belly for breakfast and get as many tacos as you can handle from Neri's. My Secret Deli, Brianna's Kitchen, and Hungry Grouper became our go-to lunch spots. Order anything and you won't be disappointed. If you want a nice dinner go to Hidden Treasure, Casa Picasso,  or Pirates Treasure (sit at the chef's table). Get some sweets at Belize Chocolate Company and have the best coffee and cocktails at Rum + Bean. And don't leave without eating at Waruguma (dare to try the seafood burrito!) and Robin's Kitchen. If Robin's Kitchen is a bit too far out of the way for you, they serve out of Stella's on Thursday nights. Relax in a tube at the back of Palapa Bar with a bucket of Belikins and when you're done, grab one of their burgers and a Watermelon Whatchamacallit. And make sure you check out Truck Stop!

What to do:
On Tuesday night hit up Crazy Canucks Beach Bar for their hermit crab races. Your face will hurt from cheering and laughing so hard. Bring $5 and a clever name and pick out a crab to race. They also have trivia night and karaoke on Fridays. On Wednesdays Truck Stop has a movie night and a cornhole tournament and pig roast on Sundays! On Thursdays most people head over to Wahoo's Lounge for the oh so famous Chicken Drop, or as we call it in Austin, Chicken Shit Bingo. Get there early if you want to buy a number and get a spot to watch. A lot of restaurants and bars have live music, comedy nights, and a lot of other activities so be on the lookout for those!

And it should go without saying, but spend as much time in the water as possible! It's simply stunning. Whether you go kayaking, paddle boarding, fishing, or just splash around on the beach you'll have a great time. Of course you have to snorkel and dive as Belize has one of the best and largest reefs in the world (second only to Australia). We went out several times with Palapa Tours and couldn't love or recommend them more. They completely made our trip. Here are the best spots to go snorkeling and diving:

Hol Chan Marine ReserveBy far one of the best snorkel spots, not just in Belize, but the world. You can easily do a half day trip out and see everything the reef has to offer from coral, to hundreds of types of fish, rays, and, (my favorite) sea turtles. This is one of the most visited destinations but you need to go with a tour group. 

Shark Ray AlleyThis is an another absolute must, but not for the faint of heart! Many tours will do Shark Ray Alley on the same trip as Hol Chen. Here you get to feed and swim with 4-7 feet nurse sharks, sting rays, sea turtles, and tons of other fish and marine life. We got extremely lucky and got to see a pod of 7 dolphins and a manatee on our trip to Hol Chen and Shark Ray Alley.  

The Blue HoleWe opted out diving the Blue Hole after hearing that it was beautiful to fly over, but for the hefty price tag many thought diving near Turneffe was better. This is one I'll definitely come back to though! 

Turneffe AtollThis trip is beyond incredible. We dove with Amigos Del Mar and if you can do an early morning (5:30am start) and stand an over 2.5 hour (sometimes choppy) boat ride you will not be disappointed. Visibility was literally has far as your eyes could see and diving along the wall is an experience I'll never forget. 

Mexican Rocks: This is another half day trip as it's at the most northern tip of Ambergris Caye. You can take a short boat ride or drive. We had quite the adventure and took a golf cart up and stopped at Secret Beach along the way. It turned into a full day trip for us and wouldn't recommend unless you're with a local/someone who knows where they're going.  

Other things to do
If you want to adventure outside of Ambergris, go to Caye Caulker and have some lizard juice at the Lazy Lizard (at The Split) or paddle board through mangroves with Contour Ocean Adventures and grab dinner at Little Kitchen. If you head to the mainland, take a tour of Lamanai with Lamanai Eco Adventures. And if you're feeling really adventurous go to Belizean Ink for one of the best souvenirs you could ever get. 😉

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