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-   -   Belize/Tikal questions (https://www.fodors.com/community/mexico-and-central-america/belize-tikal-questions-61951/)

kristi Feb 7th, 2000 06:33 AM

Belize/Tikal questions
 
Hi! We're heading to Belize at the end of March, staying on Ambergris Caye near San Pedro. My husband is interested in taking a daytrip to Tikal to see the ruins, what's the best way to get out there? As we've already booked our hotel, we would just be interested in a day trip, not staying overnight. <BR> <BR>Has anyone taken a daytrip to mainland Belize to see the rainforest? Is it worth the effort? <BR> <BR>Any recommendations for dining, especially seafood? <BR> <BR>Where are the best spots to snorkel? <BR> <BR>Thanks for any advice!

C.Clark Feb 7th, 2000 10:14 AM

Hi Kristi, we just came back from Belize. A good place to eat in San Pedro is Rasta Pasta, we don't eat seafood so I can't help you there. Definitely see the Lamanai Ruins, the trip up New River is incredible. Also you can do a day trip to Tikal by flying, another must!!! <BR>I'll give you an e-mail address of a very good travel agent there, she'll give you better prices than you can get on Ambergris Caye. Her name is Katie and her e-mail address is: [email protected] <BR>Have fun. You should have spent a few days in Cayo. <BR>

dan woodlief Feb 7th, 2000 10:26 AM

Kristi, you might want to consider overnighting it anyway. I have not been to Tikal, but I would think you might be able to find some pretty inexpensive accomodations if you look. We did something similar in the Yucatan. We were staying in downtown Cancun but stayed one night in Merida for well under $30 a night, while keeping our hotel in Cancun. This kept us from having to transport all our luggage. We just took a backpack and camera equipment.

Chris Collinson Feb 9th, 2000 11:26 AM

I second Lamanai & the New River. Check out Goff's Caye for snorkeling, also we took a glass bottom boat to the reef just off the coast of Ambergris-what a deal on seeing some amazing sealife.

Christina Feb 10th, 2000 09:01 AM

Hi Kristi, I just got back from a few months in Belize. We never made it out to San Pedro, but I hear it is beautiful. If you are looking for somewhere less touristy, you might want to try one of the other cayes, though. I went to Caye Caulker and loved it. We also snorkled off the reef there. I would definitely recommend spending some time on the interior of the country. If you are interested in the rainforest or in caves, I would recommend spending some time at some of the parks on the Hummingbird Highway. I stayed at Five Blues Lake National Park at Mile 32, and had an amazing time. There are also women's group bed and breakfasts in the local village (St. Margaret's), so you can stay overnight with local families. When I went to Tikal, I took a bus from Belmopan to Melchor (on the Belize/Guatemala Border), and then one from Melchor to Las Flores. I would definitely recommend staying in Las Flores or Santa Elena, Guatemala (which is a less expensive) and then from there getting a minibus to Tikal. Las Flores is fun, and a great place to pick up presents for the family (Flores is the best place to buy hammocks if you cannot make it down to the street fairs at Chichicastenango). I'm not quite sure how you would do Tikal as a day trip, however, but I woudl think you could make plane reservations from booths on San Pedro. Hope some of this information helped! Enjoy your trip.

BRAD Feb 15th, 2000 07:46 AM

TIKAL IS AWESOME. IT WILL TAKE AT LEAST ONE DAY TO HALFWAY SEE THE RUINS. THE BUS FROM BELIZE CITY TO FLORES FOR ABOUT 25USD (YOU CATCH IT AT THE BOAT DOCK/LAUNCH). ON FLORES THERE ARE LOTS OF NICE HOTELS WITH A/C AND HOT WATER (SOME WITH SWIMMING POOL) FOR LESS THAN 25USD NITE. MICROBUS TO TIKAL FROM FLORES IS ABOUT 3USD EACH WAY. ENTRY INTO THE PARK IS ABOUT 7USD. THERE IS A NICE RESTAURANT ACROSS FROM THE MUSEUM BY THE OLD RUNWAY THAT MAKES A WONDERFUL CHICKEN/RICE/BEAN LUNCH FOR ABOUT 3USD (CHICKEN IS AWESOME AND BIG). THE BUS TRIP BELIZE CITY/FLORES IS ABOUT 4 OR 5 HOURS, MAYBE MORE DEPENDING ON ANY VISA OR PASSPORT ISSUES AT THE BORDER OTHER PASSENGERS MAY HAVE. PEOPLE IN BELIZE ARE VERY FRIENDLY AND HELPFUL. THE PRICES ARE VERY EXPENSIVE THERE THOUGH SO WE COUULDNT AFFORD TO STAY TOO LONG. DRAFT BEER WAS ABOUT 5USD A GLASS, GAS WAS ABOUT 5USD GALLON, THE BEER BRANDS(MOST ONLY SERVE THE BELIZE BEER- "BELIKIN" WHICH I DIDNT LIKE). SAW THE RUINS OF CHARACOL WHICH WAS ABOUT SIXTY MILES DOWN A DIRT ROAD NEAR SAN IGNACIO. STARTED RAINING ON THE WAY BACK AND OUR RENTED ISUZU TROOPER WAS SLIDING ALL OVER. WAS REALLY FUN AND A LOVELY SITE. VISIT WITH THE FRIENDLY HORSE WHO TROMPS AROUND THE GROUNDS. ALSO VISITED ALTUN-HA WHICH WASN'T NEARLY AS IMPRESSIVE AS CHAROCOL OR TIKAL (HAVENT BEEN TO LAMANAI). GOOD LUCK WHAT EVER YOU CHOOSE.

Dave Feb 16th, 2000 08:20 AM

Tikal is a must if you want to be awed by a vast number of spectacular Mayan ruins. We went by van on a tour, but a plane would be better for a one day trip.

Eva Feb 24th, 2000 09:22 AM

We went to Belize last February, staying at Ramon's Village in Ambergris Caye. <BR> <BR>For any excursion you wish to take, check with any of the kiosks on the piers. The best one we found was at Innovative Watersports (I think that's the name), just north of Ramon's. Lara there set us up for great tours, including a manatee watching tour, and a trip to Altun Ha. We did not go to Tikal, but saw many advertisements for it -- most of them involved flying over, so you could do it in a single day. <BR> <BR>As for dining, especially seafood, its good just about everywhere (though I have to say that the best was when our guide on the manatee trip cooked red snapper over a coconut husk fire). Aside from that, try Elvi's Kitchen in town -- sand floor, native cuisine, great atmosphere. We also enjoyed Island Cuisine, just outside of Ramon's gate -- unassuming but wonderful. In general, though, all the seafood we ate was wonderful. (Stay away from fresh veggies, though . . .)


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