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Tom Sep 10th, 2002 08:26 AM

Advice on Belize?
My wife and I are thinking of going to Belize in November. Does anyone have advice on whether it's worth it? It seems to have attractions both on land and sea... <BR>We really don't want to go anywhere too commercial. We'd be flying from the northeast, so caribbean/latin America seems right. Thanks for any info.

Patty Sep 10th, 2002 09:38 AM

Tom,<BR>That is exactly what attracted us to Belize - the combination of land and sea attractions. We loved it and still think of Belize as one of our best trips after many years. It's very non-commercial compared to other Caribbean destinations.

W Sep 10th, 2002 10:31 AM

My husband and I traveled to Belize a couple of years ago. I can tell you they have great diving and fishing. We also went on a jungle/rain forest tour that was great. We stayed at Banana Beach, which was very clean and simply. It had a kitchen area, living area and separate bedroom. It was definitely not very commercialized.

x Sep 10th, 2002 12:12 PM

a week on the cayes (or plancentia) and a week inland...heaven.

Owen O'Neill Sep 11th, 2002 05:47 AM

I posted in this forum last winter seekign suggestions for a warm-weather destination that would be non-commercial, low-key, have scuba certificationa and good diving available and and also other activities. Belize seemed to come up quite consistently as a good option. Late May 2002 I visited there fro ten days and loved it - will defintiely go back. If you can swing two full weeks I agree wiht the notion of a week inland followed by a week in the cayes. The jungle and in particular the caving trips and Mayan ruins are spectacular. Food is simple but plentiful and inexpensive (and the fresh fish ont he cayes is amazing!). People are friendly, English is the predominant language and it's politically stable and very safe by most folks standards. The only negative was the night I spent in Belize City, sinply because there are very few places where it's safe to walk around after dark in BC if you're a tourist and the neighborhood I stayed in was depressing. That was poor planning on my part - I wouldn't use Belize City as a base for day trips but it is a convenient overnight stop between inland and the cayes. Just research carefully and choose your accomodations wisely (I did not). Hotels and lodges on the cayes and inland can be very nice for low prices - expect to pay closer to US prices for a good hotel room in BC but IMHO it's worth it for the one night you are likely to be there. For my caving I chose Ian Anderson's Jungle Lodge - not cheap but worth every penny and then some. I stayed on Caye Caulker and chose it because although it has commercial development (but very much of the mom and pop variety), it is much less commercial than Ambergris. I stayed in Seaside Cabans which were nice but I discovered (too late), that for the same price or a few $$ more I could have stayed at Iguana Reef - I looked at the rooms and it's phenomenal - a really top rate facility. YOU can find a decent room for $30 night on CC but if you can spring for the $90-100 of a lace like Iguan just do it and you'll have no regrets. Do not expect great shore snorkeling or abundant soft sand beaches with great swimming in the cayes but snorkel and dive trips are cheap and fun.

lili Sep 11th, 2002 06:05 AM

Just FYI, may parents went in Novemeber of 2000 and it rained every day all week - now we can't control the weather, but they were not divers so if you aren't either, you might want to stay clear of ambergos caye in November as there wouln't be much else to do! (PS - even through the rain, they LOVED the people in Belize so much they even looked at property there :))))

Lan Sluder Sep 11th, 2002 07:36 AM

I've written several books on Belize (I'm also the co-author and updater of the upcoming edition of the Fodor's Guide to Belize & Guatemala), and I've been banging around Belize for about 12 years, so I'm probably biased, but I'd say yes it's definitely worth it!<BR><BR>November is (usually) the tail end of the rainy season and the tropical storm season in Belize. The later in the month you go the better in terms of weather. It is rare, however, for you to get a whole week of rain even in the height of the rainy season (September and October). Usually you'll have clear mornings with rain for a time in the afternoon, but there's still plenty of sunshine.<BR><BR>I'd suggest a surf 'n turf trip -- about half your time on the cayes (Ambergris being by far the most popular) and half on the mainland, typically in Cayo.<BR><BR>--Lan Sluder

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