NEED HELP/BELIZE

Old May 1st, 2006, 04:12 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 27
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
NEED HELP/BELIZE

Hello,
There are 12 in my family and we are travelling to Belize as soon as the youngsters are out of school--June 23rd for one week. Is this rainy season? We found a very nice place in Dangriga, however it is 2 1/2 hrs. away from Belize City. Should we try to stay closer to Belize or is Dangriga the place to be? We would need to fly or rent a car to get there. Appreciate your help. Thank you.
mar35ge is offline  
Old May 1st, 2006, 05:57 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,255
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
June is often the start of "rainy" season, but we visited in July/August 2003 and it rained almost exclusively at night. Expect heat and high humidity and drink lots of water.

Would be interested to hear where you're thinking of staying in Dangriga, as it's not really a visitor hot spot. Lots of visitors to Belize split their time between inland (often the San Ignacio area - hiking, canoing, villages, and ruins including Tikal over the border in Guatemala) and a beach (Placencia? Hopkins?) or island (most typically Ambergris Caye or Caye Caulker). Belize City is not a place the vast majority of folks choose to stay in longer than it takes to leave, though it has it's followers. With just a week to spend you might want to stick with 1 spot, but are you SURE you can't muster more time? There's so much to do!

What are the ages and interests of your family members? Are you an adventuresome bunch or do you just want hammocks and a beach? You might want to check out www.belizeforum.com , if for no other reason than to search for the place you're considering in the accommodations section to read reviews.

Whatever you're looking for, I hope you find it - happy trails!
hopefulist is offline  
Old May 2nd, 2006, 01:33 AM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 27
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Your response caused me to change my mind as to where we're staying in Belize. We found a very beautiful resort in Dangriga, therefore we selected that place. We will be looking at other places such as Ambergris Caye. The children will, at the time of travel, range from ages 9 to 13 and all are adventurous. Thank you for your help.
mar35ge is offline  
Old May 2nd, 2006, 05:52 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,255
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You might want to consider a couple of nights in the jungle to start, either flying to Flores and visiting Tikal (AMAZING ruins in Guatemala) or at a place like Caves Branch which has incredible caving trips including floating on innertubes through river caves and rapelling; some of the caves have Mayan artifacts. I think they have a canopy zipline now, too, and the zoo is on the way, which you really shouldn't miss - no other place like it on earth.
www.cavesbranch.com .

If you're interested in Maya ruins, the San Ignacio area has several, but I've heard the trip up the New River to Lamanai is wonderful and can be done as a day trip from Ambergris Caye. Have a wonderful time, whatever you decide!
hopefulist is offline  
Old May 2nd, 2006, 09:24 AM
  #5  
Cvechko
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
If your kids are adventurous, check out my trip report I posted today "Jaguar Reef Belize Trip Report". They would love this place. You can also check out my photos at http://webpages.charter.net/cvechkol...zeTrip2006.htm .

The Lodge website is www.jaguarreef.com.

 
Old May 2nd, 2006, 09:26 AM
  #6  
Cvechko
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Forgot to mention, you fly into Dangrigia to get there. A Lodge van is then there to pick you up & it is maybe 20 minutes or so to the Lodge. The Lodge is 1 mile from a little village callled Hopkins.
 
Old May 2nd, 2006, 02:48 PM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 27
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks, hopefullist. Your recommendations are helpful. By the way, the place we were going to stay in Dangriga is called "belizean Dream.com". I'm still a little disappointed because the only place that comes close to that is Francis Ford Coppola's place "blancaneaux.com".Where did you stay and were you happy with the place? Thank you.
mar35ge is offline  
Old May 2nd, 2006, 03:14 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,255
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Your family and our family are different kinds of travelers, I think, so my recommendations wouldn't be down your alley. We avoid resorts and prefer to stay in villages and local lodging options where we get to meet the locals and our kids get to play soccer and go fishing with local kids. We like to shop at the neighborhood grocery store (often a Chinese grocery in Belize!), do our own cooking, and trade meals with locals we've met. Many of our fondest memories have been on public buses (old yellow hand-me-down school buses) and most of the places we stay have limited or no electricity; some haven't had running water, either. We're basically budget travelers by choice, though we splash out occasionally for high adventure (like Caves Branch, above - their Black Hole Drop is death-defying - and scuba diving) and the perfect jungle setting. One place we really loved was Macal River Jungle Camp: www.belizecamp.com , the wild cousin to Chaa Creek, a highly rated resort in the San Ignacio area: www.chaacreek.com .

If you're interested in breaking out and trying a wild, different kind of vacation where you really get a feel for the place, let me know - we absolutely loved Belize for it's rough edges, friendly people, and beans and rice.

Have a great time!
hopefulist is offline  
Old May 2nd, 2006, 05:56 PM
  #9  
Cvechko
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Do you mean Belizean Dreams http://www.belizeandreams.com/.

If so,it is right next to the Jaguar Reef Lodge. The rooms at the Belizean Dreams are gorgeous & plush.
 
Old May 3rd, 2006, 12:54 AM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 27
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
To Cevechko: Yes, I meant Belizean Dreams. It seems so remote. We were told there were marshes in the water in front of the villas, so snorkeling would have to be done via a boat ride. Did you find it remote?
To hopefulist: My husband and I travel the way your family does..we're very budget conscious and adventurers. We have stayed in very remote places, in jungles, etc. We only get to "splurge" on our family once every couple of years. Fortunately, or unfortunately, they all have great jobs and they do not spare money when they travel. They stay at much better places than my husband and I. You raise a good point. They told us to pick the place and they'll go. I guess we've spoiled them and think they expect top notch places. I would be interested in hearing your thoughts about places to stay and we'd certainly consider them. Thank you.
mar35ge is offline  
Old May 3rd, 2006, 05:36 AM
  #11  
Cvechko
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Snorkeling off the beach is not good - only thing we saw was a starfish. Marshes? No, there was no marsh. The water is great for swimming & playing.

To get to the reef, you do have to take a boat.

You may want to check with Belizean Dreams -- I have a hunch that it is owned by the same people who own the Jaguar Reef. However, the condos/rooms & pool are very plush & gorgeous. Also, see if you take the tours with the same group as the Jaguar.

Please read my Trip Report "Jaguar Reef Belize Trip Report". It will give you an idea of the tours & area, etc.

It is remote. But it is sooooo much fun! We have stayed in many 4&5 star resorts - you lay around the pool, take a few tours, etc. This trip is totally different. It is fun & adventure the entire time.

I think your family would love it. Good luck with your decision. Give us a report after your trip - wherever you decide to go.
 
Old May 3rd, 2006, 05:44 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,255
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hi, again! Though not my style, Jaguar Reef and Belizean Dreams are near Hopkins, a Garifuna village that we loved, not Dangriga, which was interesting to us in a gritty way but not a place we were tempted to stay more than an hour or 2. Truly consider Macal River Jungle Camp and Caves Branch, unless members of your family are squeemish about jungle settings. Caves Branch has incredible adventures and their guides are amazing, MR Jungle Camp is associated with Chaa Creek which has a good trail system, is on the Macal River (canoing) and offers excellent, though pricey, tours to area attractions including Tikal. Chaa Creek looked too manicured for us, but has an excellent reputations. Spend 3-4 days inland and then hit the beach, is my opinion. If you want a nice resort the Hopkins ones mentioned above might be nice - day trips in the area include Maya Centre Village and the Cockscomb Jaguar Reserve (excellent hiking) and the Mayflower site, and, of course, Hopkins itself. Most visitors to Belize head straight to Ambergris Caye but I have no experience there. We did our blue water time on Glover's Atoll, a 40 mile boat ride from the southern coast - absolutely amazing (world-class diving and snorkeling from shore) but very remote and tough to do when your time is so limited. So many decisions! Have a wonderful trip - hope you enjoy Belize as much as we did.
hopefulist is offline  
Old May 3rd, 2006, 07:48 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,049
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Look at Hamanasi or Jaguar Reef on either side of Belizean Dreams. Or at roberts Grove and Turtle Inn in Placencia (ownedy by your pal FFC). Victoria House, Portofino, Mata Chica on Ambergris (many more inns, hotels and condos tochoose from there).
Katie_Valk is offline  
Old May 8th, 2006, 05:44 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 50
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Could anyone tell me if I will need an outlet converter at Jaguar reef? I am from US and not sure if I should bring one?
SarahRae0807 is offline  
Old May 8th, 2006, 07:27 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 323
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
No converter needed for your US plugs!
CaymanSue is offline  
Old May 8th, 2006, 09:27 AM
  #16  
Cvechko
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
SarahRae,
Be sure to give us a report on how you liked your trip to Jaguar Reef. I hope you like it as much as we did.
 
Old May 9th, 2006, 05:23 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 50
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I will definately give a report when I get back!
SarahRae0807 is offline  
Old May 9th, 2006, 05:24 AM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 50
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Is there any insider tips I should know about or is there anything you really recommend I do or see while there??
SarahRae0807 is offline  
Old May 9th, 2006, 04:25 PM
  #19  
Cvechko
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Best snorkel guides - John & Terry.
Best tour guide - Charlton

If there is anything you want they don't have - check with the from desk - they are as helpful as possible.

Take books, but spray, anything you may need - there is no where to buy that stuff.

If you go on the half day snorkel then half day river trip - sit in the back of the boat from the beginning so you can be in the back for the trip down the river. They will put the canopy up during the river tour & you want to be under it - it is hot!!!

On the sign up sheet for the tours, they will list 2 lunch options. If you do not like either, ask them if you can put an alternate sandwich (such as a BLT) - they were very accommodating.

Do not turn down a tour such as the tubing in the caves because it is 2 hours away via van - the ride through the countryside is very interesting.

Talk to the guides & ask lots of questions. Makes the whole trip more interesting.

All the tours we did were fun. Cannot imagine you would not enjoy any of them.
 
Old May 9th, 2006, 04:26 PM
  #20  
Cvechko
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
That should be "front desk"
 
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
mosthecat
Mexico & Central America
6
Nov 23rd, 2008 01:19 PM
ellenwm
Mexico & Central America
9
Apr 16th, 2008 03:45 AM
rnaval
Mexico & Central America
5
Oct 16th, 2007 09:47 PM
kuriouskat
Mexico & Central America
4
Jan 31st, 2007 09:11 PM
psbroome
Mexico & Central America
4
Nov 3rd, 2005 02:02 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Manage Preferences - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Your Privacy Choices -