Boat, Ferry, and Water-Taxi Travel
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Boat, Ferry, and Water-Taxi Travel
Several private boats make the run from Dangriga to Tobacco Caye for BZ$35 per person one-way. They leave Dangriga around 9:30 am and return from Tobacco Caye midmorning. Check at the Riverside Restaurant in Dangriga or ask your hotel on Tobacco Caye.
Other than that, you're generally left to your own devices for private boat transportation to the cayes. You can charter a small boat with driver—typically BZ$400 and up a day—or negotiate a one-way or round-trip price, up to BZ$600 or more one-way to the atolls. You'll have little luck renting a powerboat on your own, as boat owners are reluctant to risk their crafts, and new laws require that you need a captain's license before you can operate a boat in Belize waters (sailing charters are excepted).
Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker
Two water-taxi companies, with fast boats that hold up to 100 passengers, connect Belize City with Ambergris Caye (BZ$25 one-way) and Caye Caulker (BZ$15 one-way), each with 8 to 10 departures a day. Caye Caulker Water Taxi boats depart from the Marine Terminal near the Swing Bridge; San Pedro Belize Express boats leave from the nearby Tourism Village dock. It's a 45-minute ride to Caulker and 75 minutes to San Pedro. Boats stop on demand at Caye Chapel.
North Ambergris Caye
There aren't any cabs on North Ambergris; to get there from San Pedro, you can take a water taxi. Scheduled service is available roughly hourly on the Island Ferry during the day until 10 pm. Rates are BZ$14 to BZ$50, depending on the destination. After 10, you can arrange a custom pickup at higher rates. Coastal Xpress provides scheduled ferry service up and down the island, it offers service between Pelican Reef hotel in the south and Blue Reef Island Resort in the north, with about a dozen stops en route. Currently, service starts at 5:30 am and ends at 2:15 am. Prices range from BZ$8 to BZ$40. San Pedro Belize Express also operates a twice-daily water taxi from Corozal Town to San Pedro, at the cost of BZ$45 one-way.
Caye Caulker Water Taxi Association. Caye Caulker Water Taxi Assocation boats leave from the Marine Terminal at 10 North Front Street in Belize City. Despite the Caulker name, there are around six or seven boats per day to and from both San Pedro and Caye Caulker. On both Caye Caulker and Ambergris Caye the Water Jets International terminals are on piers on the front (sea) side of the islands. Marine Terminal, 12 N. Front St., near Swing Bridge, Belize City. 223/5752 in Belize City; 226/0992 in Caye Caulker. www.cayecaulkerwatertaxi.com. BZ$30 one-way between Belize City and San Pedro; BZ$20 between Belize City and Caye Caulker; BZ$20 between San Pedro and Caye Caulker.
Coastal Xpress. Coastal Xpress provides scheduled ferry service up and down the island. It offers about a dozen daily trips between the Amigos del Mar pier in town and Pelican Reef hotel in the south, and the same number between Amigos del Mar and Blue Reef Island Resort in the north, with stops and pick-ups on demand at all private docks and hotels and restaurants. At this writing, service starts at 5:30 am and ends around 2:15 am. Coastal Xpress also offers charter boat service to other cayes and coastal locations. Ferry schedule and service is subject to change—check locally for updates. Amigos del Mar Pier, Beachfront, San Pedro. 226/2007. www.coastalxpress.com. From BZ$8 to BZ$40; weekly pass also available.
Riverside Café. This local café on the river in Dangriga is a place to meet local boat owners and arrange transportation to Tobacco Caye. Riverside & Oak Sts., west side of North Stann Creek River, Dangriga. 661/6390. Daily 7 am–9 pm.
Water Jets International. Water Jets International boats, also confusingly known as San Pedro Water Jets Express, leave from the Marine Terminal at 10 North Front Street in Belize City. There are around six boats per day to and from San Pedro and Caye Caulker. On both Caye Caulker and Ambergris Caye the Water Jets International terminals are on the back (lagoon) side of the islands. They also provide daily service (sometimes every-other-day off-season) between the Muelle Fiscal or municipal pier in Chetumal, Mexico, and San Pedro and Caye Caulker. 10 N. Front St., Marine Terminal, Belize City. 226/2194. www.sanpedrowatertaxi.com. One-way fares are BZ$24 between Belize City and Caye Caulker; BZ$35 between Belize City and San Pedro; BZ$24 between San Pedro and Caye Caulker; BZ$80/US$40 between San Pedro and Chetumal.
San Pedro Belize Express Water Taxi. San Pedro Belize Express water taxis depart from the Brown Sugar terminal on North Front Street. On Caye Caulker, San Pedro Belize Express boats arrive at the pier near the basketball court on Front Street, and in San Pedro they arrive at the pier at Black Coral Street on the east (sea) side of the island. They also provide daily service between the Muelle Fiscal or municipal pier in Chetumal, Mexico, and San Pedro and Caye Caulker. 111 N. Front St., Brown Sugar Terminal, San Pedro. 223/2225 in Belize City; 226/3535 in San Pedro. www.belizewatertaxi.com. BZ$20 one-way between Belize City and Caye Caulker; BZ$30 one-way between Belize City and San Pedro; BZ$20 one-way between San Pedro and Caye Caulker; BZ$75 (US$37.50) one-way between San Pedro and Chetumal.
Thunderbolt. Thunderbolt has round-trip service between Corozal Town and San Pedro Friday–Monday. (Off-season service may be reduced or eliminated.) The trip takes 90 minutes to two hours, depending on weather conditions. The boat stops in Sarteneja on-demand. In Corozal, the Thunderbolt arrives and leaves at the Reunion Pier in the center of town; in San Pedro it arrives and leaves at the dock on Black Coral Street on the back side of the island near the soccer field. Reunion Pier, Corozal Town. 610/4475 boat captain's cell; 422/0026 landline in Corozal Town. BZ$45 one-way. No service Tues.–Thur.; service may be reduced off-season.
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