Vacations, as we all know, are very interesting and fun-filled, because of the beautiful sceneries, the beautiful moments that might never repeat itself, memories shared and the fun to it. Our trip to Belize was nothing short of pure delight and amazement as we got to explore the very best things the city and island had to offer.
Our Caribbean vacation started out in Belize City, which is the largest city in Belize and was once a part of the British Empire (formerly the capital of British Honduras), owing to this fact, communication was not a problem because English was the spoken and understood in most parts of the country and the American dollar is equally accepted in most places in the city. Our arrival at Belize was at the near end of the rainy season with the offseason in progress. The first significant thing we enjoyed was how the journey was effortless and convenient.
Stepping on Belizean ground, our first three nights were spent at a lovely Inn called The Great House Inn. Describing this Inn is not much of a problem as one can tell that it was formerly a colonial house turned into a beautiful haven to keep people like us. We were given a very comfortable, clean and spacious room for our stay. The Inn stands very prominent, centrally located near the beach, water terminals and shops. In my opinion, the Inn is rather basic and only satisfies your needs with regards to resting your head for the night or having a quick stop by before running off to make other trips. We had to go across the street to get a meal and even to get a decent swim in the swimming pool and at a cost.
A day was set apart as a tour during our stay in Belize City. We had a tour guide named Juan, who helped us get around very nicely. Juan was knowledgeable and friendly and guided us on our choice tour which was The Black Howler Monkey Sanctuary and Altun Ha Ruins, a private tour we got because of Piper who is a toddler and the offseason being in progress.
We were very hopeful to see Crocodiles along the way as we drove to the sanctuary, but the search proved futile. We never saw any crocodile. Instead, Juan saw a Porcupine on a tree and called our attention to it, and we all got out of the car and took several minutes to admire the beautiful critter.
Finally, when we got to the Sanctuary, Juan handed us a broom-like material to wave off bugs and mosquitoes which would encounter on our hike into the jungle.
We walked for almost 20 minutes into the beautiful jungle and caught the terrific sight of the creatures, The Howler Monkeys. Juan raised a wet leaf and waved it at the monkey, immediately, it raced down the tree to get its prize, with this, we noticed that the monkey was quite calm and used to being fed by humans. We all took our turns at feeding the monkey, and the feeling we got was just amazing. Just as we were in the fun of the feeding process, Juan called our attention to a beautiful moment, a momma monkey with her baby wrapped around her. The guide told us the baby was just two weeks old and it was indeed a beautiful sight.
Up next was the Altun Ha. It was relatively small and looked very well managed. The grasses were cut low, and the path was clear. Juan was very knowledgeable and took us around showing us the most substantial piece of Jade found in one of the temples. At the exit of the site, the locals made beautiful selections of souvenirs that had good quality; one could also get fresh fruits with coconuts being the best-selling there.
The adventure in Belize City was an unforgettable one, but then it was time for us to move to the Island to get a taste of the Island life. Belize is known to have beautiful Island and we had to make a choice between the Placencia Peninsula which is a small island known for its white sand and warm water and the Caye Caulker Island which is a tiny island with a laid-back attitude and also The Ambergris Caye which is the most significant island with a happening party scene in San Pedro.
A tough choice it was, but we settled for the Caye Caulker Island. The island was beautiful, and when you step off the ferry, you’re welcome by a procession of taxi drivers who await to help you to your hotel or condo in golf carts. Very few cars/trucks are allowed on the island, and with this fact, the primary transportation mode is the Golf cart or Bicycles or Taxis. The entire journey from the City to the island lasted for about 45 minutes.
We lodged in a Condo that we found on AirBAndB. It was a couple of blocks away from the main street. It was modeled in a way that four different condos surrounded a swimming pool and all in one compound. The Condo we had was a one bedroom with a loft; it was open and the perfect size for our family of three. We cut down on cost by cooking our breakfast and most times dinner just to save through the trip.
For our ten day trip, we rented two bikes to make our movement around the island seamless and very effortless.
We treated ourselves to a private tour organized for us by Ever, our guide on the island from Jay’s tour guide. For our trip, our goal was to find manatees. Ever was very relational and friendly, and he was as keen on seeing them as we were. Once we spotted manatees, we would tail them for several miles; we didn’t get off the boat to snorkel or swim with the manatees because of our Piper, We hope for better luck next time.
Our next stop was a place on the island where people feed tarpons, it was a fantastic sight, and we saw the tarpons jump high out of the water.
One afternoon, we took time to chill at the Split. The split was a place on the island that had a scene that looked like spring-break because of the loud music, ocean trampoline, and sunbathers. To get to the Split, you would have to take a boat ride. Judging from the look of the place, the Split surely has potentials of becoming even more fun during certain times of the year such as (New Year, April/March). It sure is an excellent place to chill, grab a drink, swim, make a couple of new friends and just have a good time relaxing.
So, we decided to take a quick tour to one of the other islands to see what we had missed. A ferry conveyed us to the Ambergris Caye, from the ferry station you can tell that the island was a very busy one. We managed to grab a coffee, walked the beach a little and set back to our choice island just after spending only a few hours.
Speaking of food, we were open to a whole new world of delicacies and delicious meals. We were treated to decent restaurants that offered their best, some of which are the Rainbow Grill Restaurant, serving a bean and cheese burrito for our entire meal cost us$45, it was also known for its fantastic views. Next is Maggie’s Sunset Kitchen serving an excellent meal of whole fish and excellent veggie curry selling at $40. Then we have Rose restaurant where we had a fresh lobster tail and shrimp kabab for $60. If you wish to spend a little less, we tried our hands on some local vendors too. We bought substantial bean burritos for $5 apiece; we also decided to try a fry jack which sold at $3 respectively.
We made our way to the local beer shop and had our share of the Belkin local beer. We learned that if you returned a used bottle to the local grocery store, you get a $0.5 credit.
You also had to be aware of the times and places to get milk because not just every grocery store sold milk even though a grocery store or shack can be found practically everywhere on the island. Your best bet is to ask a local for when and where to get milk.
We had a relaxing time on the island, an unforgettable experience. Most of our days were spent walking along the island beach, collecting seashells and making sand creatures.
We admired nature in its beauty every day. We strolled along the piers praising the sea life and mainly had a favorite sea creature, the Stingray.
We were captivated by the sunset at the Caribbean Sea. Life seemed perfect and peaceful all the while we stayed on the island.
Indeed, our stay at the Caye Caulker was worth it and eventful. We took our time to savor every moment of the slower paced life for ten days.
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