Belize

Tiny paradise, but Belize is still a paradise

 

Belize is not the country we talk about most, and I secretly hope it will continue to be so. Still! So many trumps!
Belize is on the Caribbean Sea. In Belize you can drink rum and aguardiente, but also whisky, which is mostly imported for retired Americans who get their tan pretty at a lower cost.

Hi, my name is Christine, i’m french, nice to meet you! Hello Belize!

 

The official language is English and the currency is the Dollar!

 

Belize is the Blue Hole, so much edge that you can see it from space. Divers looking for stamps in their logbook are in a hurry: for $120 per dive, note to amateurs.
This extraordinary site has amazed my generation, all fans of Cousteau and his expeditions.
It has become a popular destination for divers of all kinds, and the bottom is now littered with plastic bottles. 

Belize is the second largest coral reef in the world. Yeah!

 

Be careful with your eyes, sharks, tropical fish, manatees (trichetus manatus), sea crocodiles and turtles are at home here, and the opportunity to visit them is a wonderful experience. No diving diploma is required, a simple mask is sufficient.

Belize is a place in the world because there are fewer and fewer of them

 

To explore this extraordinary seabed, you only had to take a boat for one day. It was not expensive, relaxed atmosphere, calm, good-natured. But you had to respect the rules: do not touch, do not disturb, do not take away, do not throw away, do not destroy.

Manatees, including a mother and her baby, swam quietly a few meters away, hundreds of sharks moved gracefully around us. Tuna, barracudas, rays, groupers, snappers, the spectacle was breathtaking. All we had to do was stay there, float to the surface or sink a few meters and do nothing but watch.

Belize is Caye Caulker an island for Robinson… and parties

 
In Caye Caulker, the island of the broken travelers, the 2 main roads were built of sand in 2014. The wifi connections were rare and of poor quality.
Impossible to get your nose glued to your laptop. The only things you could do were go for a walk, swim, cook, read a book or paint pictures.
A few meters from the shore there were huge harmless fish that impressed us. Protected, forbidden to fish, this species could protect itself from human greed by being inedible.
Although these fish are very easy to catch, they are full of bones, which makes them completely unfit for consumption. Nevertheless, it took a strict law for ignorant people in search of sensational images to stop killing them for the pleasure of the image.
 

By nightfall the few pubs were filled with people, locals and travellers

We played a quiz organized by the bar, where the prize was a bottle of rum or a free drink. The interest was not in the reward, but in the meetings, the game, the exchange.
 
Yes, there were tourists, and they sometimes lacked a lot of education, especially on the American side: loud, shameless, with a strong tendency to drink, which always made them completely stupid in the end. But what largely dominates in my memories is an atmosphere of frivolity. No stress, no worries. Belize has something like a cool 60s hippie landmark, but with a lot more money.
 
A simple bed, a hostel with little comfort, a pair of flip-flops and days that pass, interrupted by the rhythm of the sun.
There are places like this where nothing should be changed. A life without a plan, without dates or timetables, without worries.
 

Belize is Lamanai: Mayan treasures and a living, lush jungle

Since tourism in Belize is especially dedicated to the sea, there were generally few tourists curious to discover the hinterland.
However, when Tikal attracts crowds to visit its Mayan ruins, there are far fewer candidates to discover those of Lamanai in Belize.
It is not unfortunate, you can get lost quietly on the grounds, between pyramids and tropical forest full of birdsong.
Getting to Lamanai is very easy, because in Belize everything or almost everything is done by public transport, on board these old American school buses. Everything was easy, you just had to pick up your backpacks and ask for directions. Of course, as everywhere else in the world, there were unscrupulous taxis, but most of the time, the Belizeans were friendly and benevolent.
 

Belize is San Ignacio, a small paradise for adventurers in search of discovery

San Ignacio is very close to the Guatemalan border. Not very popular with tourists who flock to the paradise coast of Belize. But there are some nice moments to spend here.
Somewhere there is an unlikely camp on the edge of the jungle. Spartan (but comfortable) wooden huts await visitors who are curious to discover the local wildlife. They will most likely be served and will take good care to wrap themselves in the mosquito net before falling asleep.

In the evening we went in search of the tarantulas (also (falsely) called tarantulas), which we discovered in the beam of our spotlights. The owner was a lover of arachnids and knew a lot about them. It is not about killing them or frying them, but only about watching them and admiring the perfection of these wild creatures and killing the stupid fantasies people have about them.

He also owned a butterfly greenhouse, which he showed to the curious. In the greenhouse there was a real treasure, much more interesting than a butterfly: a baby parrot that had fallen out of its nest and was seriously nibbled by ants when it had no feathers, called Pauly.
It is a real chance to get to know these exceptionally intelligent birds up close. They look at you fearlessly and with caution. They have a soul scanner in their iris, and somewhere they possess all the wisdom and humor in the world.

Between the ocean and the jungle, Belize is rich in many ways

 

Escape the Americanized tourist centers and the inhospitable city of Belize. This country deserves better than that. It has a history with a capital H, magnificent flora and fauna, temples hidden in the forests and tranquil rivers.
Belize is a land of adventure just waiting to be discovered, far from the mercantile travel agencies.

Belize

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Next travel: what's about Guatemala?

There is so much to see and experience in Guatemala that it is difficult to summarize. Volcanoes to climb, lakes, forests, caves, ancient Mayan ruins… and warm Guatemalans, your choice!