Just south of Mexico lies one of the most beautiful and culturally vibrant spots in the Caribbean: Belize. With non-stop flights from seven major cities in the US, venturing through the Mayan pyramids and enjoying the exquisite beaches couldnÂ’t be easier. With its rustic environment and beautiful rainforests, Belize brings you through an undiscovered world of culture and adventure.
The CEO of BelizeÂ’s Orchid Bay Resort (orchidbaybelize.com), Ari Kahn, categorizes the country by Â“the four RsÂ” of reefs, rivers, rainforests, and ruins. Â“Belize was the center of the Mayan population,Â” Kahn explains. Â“There are 10 major sites that have been excavated and hundreds more that havenÂ’t been. The great thing about the Mayan ruins in Belize is that itÂ’s like an open park, and you can walk around freely without signs and ropes between you and the pyramids.Â”
Home to the largest living barrier reef in the world, Belize is a diverÂ’s paradise.Â Snorkelers and divers can see through 75 feet of crystal-clear water right down to the ocean floor. For those who shy away from the stingrays and manatees, thereÂ’s always a boat ride down the Jon Gulf through historical caves. –Terri Ogan.
The Essentials of Belize
Where to Stay
Relax in style just off the coast of Belize at the private island of Cayo Espanto. This spot offers scuba diving, catered meals, and spa amenities. 888-666-4282, aprivateisland.com. Oscar-winning director Francis Ford CoppolaÂ’s Turtle Inn merges Balinese-inspired luxury with ancient Mayan history and some of the best sport fishing around. 800-746-3743, coppolaresorts.com. The exclusive Victoria House offers suites and private villas, along with endless activities. 800-247-5159, victoria-house.com.
Where to Eat
Enjoy a mouth-watering fusion of Belizean and Mexican dishes at the Habanero Mexican CafÃ© and Bar, located at RobertÂ’s Grove in Placencia. 800-565-975, robertsgrove.com.
What To Do
Take a dive into the best spots on the Belizean coast with Scuba and Dive Belize. Choose from four different diving packages; all equipment and food included. 888-533-2624, scuba-belize.com.