Experience some of the best diving in the world when you choose to visit Belize. Amazing Mayan ruins, untouched rainforests and dramatic scenery are just some of the things that await you in this Central American country. It is located at the base of the Yucatan Peninsula and shares more of the atmosphere of the Caribbean Islands than the continent of South America. The best time to travel is from November to May ? during the dry season, but this is also the busy tourist season. The Cayas and the Belize reef are a virtual paradise of opportunities for water sports and there are miles of hiking trails in the mountains.


 

Belize City

Experience the commercial hub of the country in the capital of Belize City. The wooden buildings here are susceptible to the hurricane force winds of the summer and many of the old structures have been damaged. Visit the market of Battlefield Park and St. John?s Cathedral, which was built in the late 1800?s and is the oldest Anglican church in Central America. Bliss Institute is the cultural center of the city. The Image Factory Foundation showcases the works of Belize artists and the Belize Audobon Society is a great place to get information on the birds and wildlife of the country.

Attractions

Visit the beach town of Placencia where the main street of the town is a concrete strip. This is just one of the places to visit if you want to travel off the beaten path.

Lamanai

This is a sem-excavated Mayan archaeological site near the settlement of Indian Church. There are 60 simple structures here, including a Mayan temple and a ball court. There is evidence that people lived here as far back as 1500 B.C. and the Mayan occupied this area when the Spanish arrived. You can take a 90-minute boat trip up the New River to reach this site and along the way you will see plenty of crocodiles and species of birds.

Travel to Belize

International flights leave Houston, New York City and Miami for Belize City. You can also fly there from cities in South and Central America. Bus service is also available from Chetumel in Mexico and you can travel by boat from points in Guatemala and Honduras.

Travel Within Belize

There are few paved roads in Belize and no trains, so you may encounter a bit of difficulty travelling around the country by road. There are domestic flights to many smaller airports and buses regularly travel the three paved roads. After heavy rain, many of the dirt roads are impassable so it is not a good idea to rent a car. There are also passenger ferries from Belize City to Caye Chapel. Caye Caulker and Ambergris Caye.

Language

English is the main language here, but the people also speak Spanish.

Visa

You do not need a travel Visa, but you do need to have a valid passport and a return ticket. The passport has to be valid for six months beyond the length of time you plan to spend in Belize.

Safety

You need to have a certificate verifying that you have a yellow fever vaccination and you should only drink bottled water. Belize City is reputed to be unsafe for tourists after dark, so you should always travel by taxi at night.

Food and Drink

The national specialties include corn or flour tortillas containing shredded chicken, onion, cabbage and cilantro. Rice and beans is another popular dish as is split peas and pig tail over rice. Many meats and fish are stewed and you can even get stewed lobster. Local drinks include coconut rum mixed with pineapple juice and the local beer is pretty good.

Shopping

The popular items to shop for in Belize are handicrafts, wood carvings and items made from straw. You can buy jewellery and items made from coral and tortoise shell, but these items are not permitted in the US.

Entertainment

The main source of nightly entertainment is in the bars and nightclubs of Be City. Other cities also have nightclubs with local live bands.

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