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Transportation options between Placencia and San Ignacio?

Transportation options between Placencia and San Ignacio?

Jan 29th, 2010, 12:54 PM
  #1  
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Transportation options between Placencia and San Ignacio?

I'm a solo female traveling to Belize in April and was wondering about transportation options from Placencia to San Ignacio. There are no flights and the hotels I'm considering staying at either don't offer shuttles or the shuttles are quite costly ($200). I know there is a public bus option and I'd like to get some feedback on it so I can weigh my options. Is it safe and relatively easy to figure out?

Thanks in advance for the help!
Veggie6 is offline  
Jan 29th, 2010, 01:40 PM
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The bus options are safe, cheap, fairly easy to figure out (but not necessarily in advance) and fascinating. Some of our favorite family memories from our 1st trip to Belize in 2003 are from bus trips. The buses are old yellow US school buses and can be really packed. Your route is fairly straight forward: hop on in San Ignacio, change in Belmopan to a bus heading either to Placencia or to Punta Gorda; some of them require a stop or change in Dangriga. You can ride clear down the peninsula to Placencia or head to Independence and take the Hokey Pokey ferry across. Here's a great reference for schedules in Belize: http://belizebus.wordpress.com

The shuttle option is more comfortable, quicker, offers the chance to stop along the road to buy a watermelon from Mennonites or check out the sites (like the inland Blue Hole, for example), and will travel on your time table. That said, we were really surprised when we were figuring out our routes for last summer's visit how expensive they are. We prefer to use buses but chose shuttles for some routes when we were off the beaten track and buses weren't an option.

If you decide to go for shuttles, you could contact the people we used (3 different providers) in the Belize 2009 travelogue below (link on the main page of that photo collection). Have a great trip and be sure to tell us all about it!
http://www.flickr.com/photos/staceyholeman/collections
hopefulist is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2010, 11:52 AM
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Take the bus. Avoid the first bus in the morning as it has a lot of government workers going to the capital city. The bus stops and picks up all the school kids so it really isn't an express bus or maybe it is( I don't set the standards)At the capital you will probably switch buses and the bus driver will let you off as close to your accommadations as his route allows, you just have to ask. Again never travel late in the afternoon and travel light you may have to put your pack on your lap for several hours. From San Ignacio look up Bob from PacZ tours and he can set you up with a cheap shuttle to the airport when you leave.
MrShort1 is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2010, 11:59 AM
  #4  
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Thanks so much for your replies and tips! I'm definitely going to take the bus option into San Ignacio.

Just one more question, even though it's not related. Do you have any recommendations on which company I should use to snorkel with the whale sharks? There are a lot of options and I'm not sure who caters to snorkelers the best...
Veggie6 is offline  
Feb 3rd, 2010, 01:13 PM
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You might want to ask on the Scuba Board:
http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/belize/ (search 1st, then ask)

Let us know what you find out!
hopefulist is offline  
Feb 6th, 2011, 05:02 PM
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On 31 January 2011, Tropic Air began flights between Placencia & Belmopan. You would then need to taxi to the bus terminal and get a bus to San Ignacio.
MisterB2 is offline  
Feb 7th, 2011, 05:02 AM
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Little late for the OP. ;-)
hopefulist is offline  
Feb 7th, 2011, 06:44 AM
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Yes, too late for the OP, but did you think about other people who have the same question and have found this thread by searching.
MisterB2 is offline  
Feb 7th, 2011, 07:01 AM
  #9  
 
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Yeah, I figured that's why you posted it. Happy trails!
hopefulist is offline  
Feb 15th, 2011, 06:39 AM
  #10  
 
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We just returned from Belize and traveled from the Placencia Peninsula to San Ignacio. We drove and did not take buses. However, we had conversations with a number of people who traveled all over Belize using the bus system. One person was a young woman who told us that she always felt safe and had traveled the route you will be traveling. The roads you will be on are all good. The turnabout moving from the Southern Highway to the road to Placencia is not yet finished but the road itself is less than one year old and well paved.

Buses are not all old school buses. You will find buses ranging from old school buses to a few modern air conditioned buses. Some are express and some stop anywhere someone waves them down even though there are stands to wait for the buses. Some people try to hitchhike at these stops but you may not be comfortable doing so. Our car did not have enough room to comfortably seat someone in the back seat so we did not pick up anyone. Be aware that you will not be able to easily predict when you will arrive at a destination since the number of stops vary. I suggest you stop in at some travel agency and ask for information. Pacz is in San Ignacio and willing to help even if you are not taking one of their tours.

Placencia was fun and you should enjoy yourself. People were friendly and willing to help and the town is small enough to easily move around and find whatever you want to find. Just make sure you transfer at Belmopan to a bus going south on the Hummingbird highway and that you also transfer near Dangriga to a bus going south on the Southern Highway and that you then transfer to a bus that will take you from the unfinished turnabout to Placencia. You may find a bus that will do all of these for you. We were told that the bus drivers are generally quite helpful and will keep you on the correct path if you so ask.
Oldanalyst is offline  
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