Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Mexico & Central America
Reload this Page > Personal Tour Guide for Belize And To Travel Up The Coast

Personal Tour Guide for Belize And To Travel Up The Coast

Reply

Dec 22nd, 2009, 04:15 PM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 1
Personal Tour Guide for Belize And To Travel Up The Coast

My boyfriend and I are are traveling to Belize and Cancun for a week in January. Our plan is to stay in Belize for 2-3 days and make our way up the coast to Cancun and explore.
Does anyone know of a personal tour guide that we could pay for a week to take us from Belize to Cancun (safely) and to see the sights along the way? If not what are your recommendations on making it up from Belize to Cancun safely? Thanks!
Barigirl22 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 22nd, 2009, 05:50 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,162
Are you flying into 1 and out of the other? I really love Belize - seems a shame to only devote 2-3 days there.
hopefulist is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 22nd, 2009, 05:53 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 16
An alterative is for us to make our base camp in Belize City and rent a car to visit the sites within a 2 hour drive. Then find transportation to Cancun

Are there any do's and don'ts for this area regarding areas to see and don’t see?

What are the options for transportation from Belize City to Cancun?
ExploringNerd is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 22nd, 2009, 05:54 PM
  #4
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 16
We hope to fly into Belize, explore, make our way up to Cancun and fly out of Cancun
ExploringNerd is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 22nd, 2009, 06:44 PM
  #5
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,066
It's so much cheaper to just take the bus. Where do you plan on spending your few days in Belize? If on Ambergris, you can fly to Corozal and transfer across the border. Or, if you travel on the weekend, take a water taxi from San Pedro to Chetumal.

You really don't need a tour guide.
JeanH is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 22nd, 2009, 07:09 PM
  #6
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,162
Here's my 2 cents' worth for you to take or leave as you wish. With just a week I'd pick either Belize or the Yucatan, not both. You're going to lose at least a day making the trip between and if you do it in pieces you'll be moving every night. Imo splitting your week between 2 bases is plenty.

Most of us who visit Belize avoid Belize City. With a week you could head inland to the San Ignacio area to visit ruins and caves and do a bit of hiking, then head back to Belize City and ferry to either Ambergris Caye or Caye Caulker (smaller, less built up, more budget options) for some blue water time.

In the Yucatan you could head inland (Valladolid?) for a taste of a colonial city and some ruins, then hit the beach (Tulum? Akumal?) before heading home.

Tell us what your interests and general budget are and we can help you more.
hopefulist is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 22nd, 2009, 07:23 PM
  #7
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 16
Thank you. We have never been to Belize or Central America. We will spend a couple of days playing, diving and resting in Cancun prior to heading back to the States. What would you recommend we see / do in Belize? ATM?
ExploringNerd is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 22nd, 2009, 08:00 PM
  #8
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 16
We are now thinking of spending 3 (full) days in San Ignacio and then 3 (full) days in San Pedro. Any recommendations on places to go and stay?
ExploringNerd is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 22nd, 2009, 08:31 PM
  #9
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,162
BETTER PLAN! ATM cave is amazing. Tikal in Guatemala is amazing and can be done as a day trip, though an overnighter is better. If you're not a total ruins junky checking out Xunantunich and Cahal Pech near/in San Ignacio is easy and they're both very nice, though not as huge as Caracol (a long day trip from San Ignacio) or Tikal. You could also visit Lamanai as a long day trip from Ambergris.

We chose Caulker over Ambergris so I can't help on accommodations there. Places in the Cayo district we've loved (all for very different reasons) are linked below and there's a link there to our photos with travelogue/blog links on the main pages (Tikal photos in the Guatemala 2007 and 2009 collections as well as Belize 2003).

If you tell us your budget/comfort level and interests in lodging (fancy, jungle, pool, all inclusive, not all inclusive, etc.) we can help you more.

ATM CAVE: http://www.pacztours.net/pages/tours/ATM.html

THE TREK STOP: www.thetrekstop.com
MACAL RIVER JUNGLE CAMP: www.belize-camp.com
which is the cheaper, junglier part of www.chaacreek.com
THE AGUADA: www.aguadahotel.com
CAVES BRANCH: www.cavesbranch.com

http://www.flickr.com/photos/staceyholeman/collections
hopefulist is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 23rd, 2009, 04:08 PM
  #10
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 16
While in San Ignacio, we would like a safe, comfortable place with electricity, air conditioning?, and indoor plumbing. I like the idea of a Jungle atmosphere but do not want to be so removed that booking tours and transportation is hindered.

At this point, I have no preference of Caulker over Ambergris. We want to have a safe place similar to San Ignacio, with beach access/views and access to snorkeling, SCUBA, local dining and drinking holes. Do you have a recommendation for Caulker?

I am far from wealthy. But, an not looking at the under $30 USD per night route either.

Thank you
ExploringNerd is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 23rd, 2009, 05:26 PM
  #11
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,162
If they're not booked up, check out Macal River Jungle Camp: great jungle setting (we saw iguanas and motmots and toucans and parrots from our hammocks), sweet tent/cabins, great camp host (Dolcio - hope he's still there), delicious food, hiking trails, access to canoes and all the goodies at Chaa Creek: pool, natural history museum, butterfly place, internet, tours. No electricity, shared bathrooms, hot showers; Dolcio goes around before dinner lighting kerosene lanterns in the cabins and along the walkways. I think it's still $55/night/pp which includes dinner and breakfast. Chaa Creek's tours have a great reputation but are a bit spendy.

For a great budget option, check out the Trek Stop which is in an old mango orchard, wildish but not a jungle. The Caribbean pine cabins are cute, composting toilets, solar showers, rustic share kitchen and you can shop at the Chinese grocery in the village of San José Succotz. The cabins have electricity for lights and fans but no ac. The owners are really helpful and it's a great, easy jumping off place for tours; in fact, you can hike to Xunantunich from there. I think it's $25-35/double per night.

The Aguada is a fantastic hotel across the bridge from San Ignacio in Santa Elena. We had a huge room with ac and a kitchenette and there's a pool and a good onsite restaurant; tour folks like Pacz picked us up and dropped us off there.

Caves Branch is south of Belmopan, great jungle setting but they've gone all resortish and, though their tours are amazing, it's really expensive.

On Caulker Sailwinds is great - full 1 bedroom suites with kitchens, ac, right on the beach near the docks. We were there in the summer, though, and if I remember right the price nearly doubles during high season. Here's a link:
http://www.staycayecaulker.com/sailwinds.html

You can also check out the Toucan Trail section of the Belize Forum for budget to mid priced options: www.belizeforum.com

Keep us posted!
hopefulist is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 24th, 2009, 04:35 AM
  #12
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,066
A few years ago we spent a couple of nights at the San Ignacio Resort Hotel. The room was ok, the place has tennis courts, a nice pool and a very pretty short hiking trail. There's also an iguana nursery on site. Also a bar and restaurant.

The location is walking distance to San Ignacio, but it's a steep hill back to the hotel. We decided that for our next trip to the area, we'll either stay at a true jungle lodge or right in town at Martha's.

A bit further away from town, and right by the ruins of the same name is Cahal Pech. We did a short walk about the property, I'd certainly be happy there.
JeanH is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 24th, 2009, 05:21 AM
  #13
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,162
Casa Blanca gets high marks in town, too. We considered it for last summer but it was booked 6 months in advance for our dates. Aguada was perfect for our needs last summer but there are lots of great options.
hopefulist is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 27th, 2009, 11:11 AM
  #14
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 11
Frommer's recommends De Real Macaw as a moderatly priced option in Caulker http://www.frommers.com/destinations...er/H32327.html
Check it out. I think it is charming, comfortable, clean, and vry affordable.
Barney2009 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 29th, 2009, 06:34 PM
  #15
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 16
Thanks Hopefulist and all!
ExploringNerd is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 30th, 2009, 03:53 AM
  #16
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,162
All we ask in return is a travelogue.
hopefulist is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
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


FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 05:45 PM.