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For those looking to escape winter’s chill, an affordable and tropical getaway awaits them in the English speaking country of Belize. Offering convenience, with direct flights from the U.S. and Canada, as well as a well-rounded selection of destinations, hotels and activities, Belize easily satisfies travelers with an assortment of tastes and budgets.
Some of the top spring travel destinations within Belize, specific for each genre of traveler, are:
Named by Travel and Leisure in 2008 as one of the “Top 10 Emerging Beach Destinations,” Caye Caulker is more than just beach. The petite island is five miles long and a half-mile wide, making it a safe haven for families to explore. And, it features a popular site called the split, which is a narrow cut that was expanded by Hurricane Hattie in 1961. This watery passageway is a large draw for families, as its smooth concrete boardwalk offers the perfect jumping-off point for snorkeling, swimming and sunbathing. The area also features a range of hotels, from those that ensure good value and comfort, to properties that offer lavish luxuries. And, the island is plentiful with restaurants, shops and tour operators; perfect for the family requiring variety while on a vacation.
At 25 miles long, Ambergris is the largest of Belize’s cayes, and is one of the best spots off of the mainland for a thriving vacation. The largest town on the caye is San Pedro, and while the town is booming with some of Belize’s hippest restaurants and funkiest bars, its laidback atmosphere is retained by features such as the cobble stone roads traveled mostly by golf carts. Groups traveling on a budget will appreciate the host of charming beachside hotels; or, if lavish boutiques are more the group’s style, the caye is also plentiful with a wide range of options. And, groups are sure to enjoy all of the activities San Pedro has to offer, such as snorkeling and diving at nearby Shark-Ray Alley or Hol Chan Marine Reserve, sailing, fishing, and kayaking.
For couples looking to treat themselves while being immersed in an environment that’s exceptionally conducive to romance, South Water Caye helps visitors truly feel as though they’ve escaped from mainstream life. The heavenly 15-acre coral island is located approximately 30 minutes by boat from Dangriga, which sits on Belize’s southern coast. The gorgeous sole accommodations on the island are moderately priced, and provide guests with everything they need to achieve ultimate relaxation. And, South Water Caye is one of few places where couples have the opportunity to literally swim off of the beach and snorkel into the vibrant reef, making for a truly distinctive and memorable experience.
Featuring sensational topography and bursting with Guatemala-bound travelers, archaeologists and thrill seekers, San Ignacio is perfect for the traveler looking for endless adventure. Here, kayakers, swimmers and tubers paddle through scenic landscapes on the Macal and Mopan rivers; hikers comb the wondrous Maya sites of Xunantunich, Cahal Pech, and El Pilar; and spelunkers and cave tubers make their way through the marvelous Che Chem Ha, Flour Camp, and Waterhole caves. However, no matter how much exploration and activity is accomplished during the day, travelers to San Ignacio can always count on the area’s exquisite boutiques and budget-friendly hotels to get a little “R&R” before the adventure starts again at sunrise.
Affectionately called “P.G.” by Belizeans, Punta Gorda is known as the gateway to fascinating marine reserves and steeped Maya civilization. The region has been known to captivate travelers with a knick for nature, as more than 495 species of exotic birds frequent the area, and trips upstream the Middle, Golden Stream and Deep Rivers provide the opportunity to catch glimpses of Black Howler Monkeys, large Green Iguanas and lumbering turtles. P.G.’s close proximity to the Port Honduras Marine and Deep River Forest Reserves provide additional opportunities for once-in-a-lifetime exploration. And, travelers looking to experience the enchantment on a budget will find a range of hotel options, and boutiques offering the lap of luxury to guests can be found in P.G. as well.
As one of the last unspoiled places on earth, Belize offers travelers the richly rewarding authenticity they seek in a Caribbean getaway. With direct flights from the U.S. and Canada, this tropical paradise is nestled between Mexico to the north and Guatemala to the west and south. For generations, the English-speaking people of Belize have demonstrated a commitment to preserving the country’s unique charms. Belize offers a land rich in natural beauty and steep in the history and culture of its Maya past. Renowned for having the second largest barrier reef in the world, Belize’s pristine waters, exotic marine and wildlife, lush unspoiled landscapes and superb diving truly make it Mother Nature’s Best Kept Secret. For more information on how you can be one with Belize, visit travelbelize.org.