Belize lodging and activities

Old Jan 21st, 2014, 10:21 PM
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Belize lodging and activities

Hello - Planning a trip to Belize end of March/beginning of April.

What lodging is the better way to go around Belize City? All inclusive or condo rentals?

We enjoy water activities, but also would like to explore the area. Is Belize similar to Costa Rica in offering guides for the day?

Thanks.

J Joel
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Old Jan 22nd, 2014, 04:02 AM
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I can't compare Belize to Costa Rica but it's possible to hire guides; some tours require them.

I don't know anyone who would recommend you stay in/around Belize City. For a quick trip (< than 1 week) most folks head to a beachy area - Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker, Placencia, or maybe Hopkins Village. For more, many of us split between an inland spot (a common choice is Cayo District in western Belize for caving, hiking, Maya sites) and a beachy area. An overnight to the Tikal Maya site in Guatemala is often a highlight and, if you're a bit adventurous, this caving trip:
http://www.pacztours.net/actun-tunichil-muknal/

Belize isn't really an all inclusive sort of place, although some jungle or island lodges are removed enough from restaurant access that they offer meals. Condo rentals are available mainly on Ambergris Caye.

If you tell us how many nights, your general budget, and what your activity interests are we can help you better. My photos with blog and travelogue links on the main page of each collection are below in case you're interested - all my recommendations are embedded there. Happy trails! http://www.flickr.com/photos/staceyholeman/collections
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Old Jan 22nd, 2014, 06:46 AM
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I would avoid Belize City. Like. The. Plague.

If you like snorkeling, go for Ambergris Cay (the most popular for that, IMO; other places are nice too).
For the land part, if you want to tour jungle, ruins, etc., IMO the Cayo District is your best bet, specifically, the San Ignacio area (also nice ruins right there in town); there are many good options at different price points there, from very cheap to jungle lodges.
Be aware that several ruins can close sporadically, usually due to flooding (among them the ATM cave mentioned above; also, no more cameras allowed in, after a tourist broke a skull by dropping a camera on it).
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Old Jan 22nd, 2014, 06:58 AM
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Our driver took us through Belize City and said, "This is where you don't want to stay." We did a split between Ambergris and the Cayo/San Iganacio area and loved both. The snorkeling at Hol Chan was fantastic; we saw sea turtles, colorful fish, big rays, and nurse sharks there.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2014, 08:10 AM
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Guides are a little harder to come by in Belize than in Costa Rica--inland at least. There's a variety of activities, all of them better than staying in Belize City.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2014, 10:37 AM
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We've booked most of our tours through our hotels and have also used PACZ tours to go to Tikal and thought they were great.
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Old Jan 27th, 2014, 09:20 PM
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Thank you everyone for your help. If we were to choose ambergris caye, what is the best way to get there from Belize City?
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Old Jan 27th, 2014, 09:33 PM
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You can either fly straight from BZE, taxi to the municipal airport and fly, or taxi to the dock and take a water taxi. More info here:
www.belizebus.wordpress.com

Happy trails!
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Old Jan 28th, 2014, 04:58 AM
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We flew on Tropic Air, only about a 15 minute flight.
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