Northern Belize Feature
Local Food Festivals
Belizeans love to party, and festivals celebrating lobster, chocolate, cashews, and other local foods give them—and you—the chance to join in the fun. Here are some of the food festivals in Belize. Note that dates can change from year to year.
Cashew Festival, Crooked Tree in early May. Crooked Tree village is named for the cashew tree that often grows in a serpentine fashion, curling and growing sideways as well as up. The yellow cashew fruit, which tastes a little like mango and smells like grapes, ripens in late spring, and the Crooked Tree Festival celebrates the cashew in all its forms: fruit, nut, juice, jam, and wine.
Chocolate Festival of Belize, Toledo in late May. Toledo’s increasingly popular tribute to local cacao celebrates the home of chocolate in Belize, with tours of small chocolate factories in Punta Gorda and nearby, visits to organic cacao farms, and local music and dances. Belikin beer even brews a special chocolate stout for the occasion.
Hopkins Mango Festival and Cultural Jam in late May or early June. New in 2011, the Hopkins Mango Fest is devoted to the sweet, juicy mango, spiced by local Garifuna culture. Events include a Garifuna drumming competition, along with bicycle and canoe races.
Placencia LobsterFest in late June. Belize’s biggest and best salute to the spiny lobster is held in Placencia village, usually on the last weekend in June. Booths sell local lobster grilled, fried, curried, and in fritters, and there’s music, dancing, and lots of Belikin. LobsterFests also are held, typically in late June or early July, in San Pedro and Caye Caulker.
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