It seems only right that one of my first travel blog entries is about my very first independent trip abroad. Aged just 17 I put on my brand new rucksack and headed off for 5 weeks of adventures, volunteering and exploring in Belize, Central America. It was one heck of a journey where I learnt so much about life beyond the one I knew. It was clear the travel bug had taken hold of me well and truly. I was hooked.
Belize is a beautiful laid-back country with unspoilt rainforest, impressive inca ruins and azure oceans. You’ll find fresh seafood and rum a-plenty and the signs all over Belize which say ‘No shirt, no shoes…no problems’ perfectly sums up the chilled out feel of the place. By comparison to the nearby Caribbean islands and Mexico, is a much less trodden tourist trail. It feels more authentic and less like a tourist trap. But go there quick as it won’t be long before the word spreads! Caye – Caulker is my favourite place in Belize, a beautiful peaceful island where relaxation is everyone agenda! If you need any more reasons to go, here are 5:
1/ Belize has the 2nd largest barrier reef in the world! It’s easily accessible from Caye Caulker via a boat trip. You can visit the stunning ‘Blue Hole’ a sink hole for amazing diving or Hol Chan marine reserve and Shark alley to swim with gentle nurse sharks and stingrays. You can even swim with manatees! I’ve snorkelled all over the world and Belize is one of my favourite places for it! The trip out to Hol Chan marine reserve isn’t bad either! We got served a tasty caribbean BBQ for lunch whilst I basked in the glorious sunshine reading a book and sipping some rum and coke! Honestly could it get any better?
You can book ahead but I’d suggest waiting until you get there as you will be able to get a much better deal – don’t be afraid to barter! It’s expected!
2/ The Split is a narrow channel splitting the island where the water is crystal clear and free of seaweed making it a great place to swim or just sit on the jetty with your legs dangling in the warm ocean watching the sea life swim by without the necessity for a snorkel! The perfectly positioned lively bar serves great cocktails and at night there will be dancing on the jetty into the early hours!
3/ The nightlife in Caye Caulker is as laid back as the people. It’s not uncommon to find several hammocks strung up in bars so you can chill out with your rum and coke! Just don’t make the mistake I did and forget to apply your deet before falling asleep in the hammock without a mozzie net and waking up in the morning to find so many mozzie bites that it looks like a severe case of chicken pox!
4/ The high street itself is well worth spending some time strolling leisurely between colourful huts and gift shops, cafes, bars and restaurants! If you have time still left over, visit the north part of the island to kayak through the mangroves!
5/ Its a short boat trip to the mainland where you will find fantastic rainforest teeming with wildlife, wonderful waterfalls and huge mayan ruins!
So what are you waiting for?!
If you enjoyed reading this, you may enjoy these other blogs about Belize by one of my fellow travel bloggers who I have collaborated with previously. She has a great blog worth checking out!
Please feel free to leave comments! Have you visited Belize? Where was your favourite place?