By: Jill Sabo
I woke up this morning, rolled over in my college dorm room bed, and staggered to the public showers. As the cold water hit my skin, I realized there is nothing magical about residential dorm life. I dressed, loaded my backpack, and stepped outside to be greeted by the bitterly icy winter air. I ventured to class and began yet another semester of higher education learning. I passionately love my college, but occasionally, I catch myself staring out the classroom windows in a daydream fantasy. I imagine myself surrounded by sweet air. I can taste exotic cuisine in my mouth, taking in mouthwatering flavors. I imagine that I am gazing out over crystal blue waters, glittering like no eyes could even dream up. I can practically feel sultry tropical sun upon my skin, bathing me in golden warmth. Suddenly, I am back to reality, in a chilly classroom, taking notes from an overpriced textbook. But as I sit in my chair, I silently smile, because I know that my dream world exists. There is a land out there, packed with ecological wonders, deep culture, and adventures waiting to be taken. This surreal land is Belize.
Belize is a land covered by plentiful, lush forests. The possibilities are endless with an environment like this. Hikes can be taken through the Belizean rainforest, where one is able to encounter the various tropical plants and herbs that the ancient Mayans used for medicinal purposes. Once you witness the abundant vegetation, you will be blown away to learn that not a single tree or bush has been brought in and planted. Belize is proud to be the home of natural diversity from forest to forest. And if plant diversity is not enough for you, then just glance upwards. Belize is home to at least 308 species of birds, which is a dream-come-true for any birdwatcher! Along with the birds, Belize hosts hundreds of butterflies as well. Take a journey to The Blue Morpho Butterfly Farm and mingle with the beautiful “Belizean Blue”, just one gem out of countless! From hiking, biking, or horseback riding, there are so many ways to enjoy all that Belize has to offer.
As If the boundless activities on land were not mind-blowing enough in itself, it is essential for one to submerge below the Belizean water and experience the underwater spectacles that will change a life. Once you gaze upon the famous coral reefs, or snorkel the spectacular seacoast, you will truly understand why Belize is considered such an enchanted place. The Belize Barrier Reef happens to be one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world. As soon as you swim among over 500 species of fish and explore the breathtaking 170-mile reef, you are guaranteed to fall in love with the sea. Amidst the extensive reef are hundreds of cayes, which are speckled with freshwater springs and even more unique ecosystems. Beneath the water surface is an aquatic delight that one can only truly experience in Belize.
Among the natural marvels here in Belize, it is important to immerse oneself in the historical culture as well. Enter the core of ancient Mayan civilization and experience the very sample temples that were used from 2000 B.C. to about 900 A.D. With the Mayan 2012 winter solstice fast approaching, now is the time to walk through the beautiful Mayan temples, appreciate the inspiring architecture, and take in some classic Belizean history.
These are the reasons I become lost daydreaming about Belize. These are the reasons I imagine that my college dorm shower is actually a spray ascending off of a waterfall deep within this Latin American location. These are the reasons I dream; because dreams can come true. Someday I hope to open my eyes, and realize that there I am; Belize. I hope someday I will be able to live my dream and wake up in a land full of wildlife, great coastlines, and adventure. I aspire to have the time of my life at the renowned Chaa Creek Resort. As the Belizean motto goes, “Sub umbra floreo” (I will flourish the shadows), yes; I will flourish. I will flourish my dreams and see you in Belize!