Mango trees have been in Belize as long as anyone can remember, and long before commercial cultivation they were seen in many a yard and scattered along roadsides, often growing as a result of someone tossing away a seed after a snack. Villagers along the coast in areas such as Gales Point Manatee would load up dories (dugout canoes) and make the long haul up to Belize City to sell them in the markets. Mangos are now commercially grown, but the backyard variety is still the mainstay of local consumption, with reputations made or broken on the strength of one’s mangos.
They are the most populous mammals on the planet and one of nature’s greatest success stories, and depending on your perspective are either cute vegetarian flying foxes or scary Bela Lugosi vampires. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, bats are here to stay and, once you get to know them, you’ll be glad.There are more than 1100 different kinds of bats sharing the planet with us, from the tiny Kitti’s hog-nosed, or bumblebee bat of Thailand and Burma – the world’s smallest mammal, up to flying foxes with six foot (two metre) wing spans. Making up a quarter of all mammals alive today, bats are found all over the world.
San Ignacio, Belize is a small lovely town located on the Cayo region of the country and mere minutes away from the border with Guatemala. Considered as the heartland of the Belizean Mayan World, San Ignacio has its fair share of cultural and adventure attractions, even for those who travel with a tight budget. Here are 7 top cultural attractions in this western town of Belize, Central America.
Don’t worry, this nautical wonder is here to use its powers for good, marking the start of the US “Southern Partnership Program” in Belize, which is a US Naval deployment working with Belizean counterparts in port security, technical and medical support, patrol operations, operational risk management and other areas. With the US Military’s recent “New Horizons” program also assisting villages in medical care, Belize seems to be the beneficiary of a stronger US presence in the region. And let’s not forget the recent confirmation of Carlos R Moreno as US Ambassador to Belize, a choice we applauded due to Mr Moreno’s impressive legal credentials and personal history. Yes, Washington DC seems to be taking little Belize seriously these days.
The holidays are over, you’re stressed out and the winter blues have set in. It’s time to get away. As you start to plan your vacation, do you consider how much good your trip could do for others? Some of the world’s most breathtaking destinations are now being managed sustainably, which means that in addition to benefiting your own mental health, your next trip could also benefit the environment and local communities. Here are 10 reasons to travel sustainably:
After our vacation at Belize’s Chaa Creek earlier this year, I rave about the place all the time and have confidently steered a few friends in that direction. I say confidently because I have no doubt that no matter what their ages or interests, anyone will find something there to please and even excite them.
Belize is probably not the number one location on your list of countries you must visit. It should be. Sitting just on the Central American east coast, Belize benefits from Caribbean temperatures and beaches on the Caribbean Sea. More than that it offers a wide range of stunning attractions which tap into the ancient history of the region as well as being immensely enjoyable. A private villa in Belize will give you the luxury you deserve for your holiday as you explore our top five attractions.
Mayan for “Stone maiden” Xunantunich is definitely one of Belize’s prettiest Maya archaeological sites, renowned for exquisite architecture, beautiful frescos and stelae, as well as its park-like atmosphere and stunning views from the top of El Castillo, the iconic pyramid temple. Xunantunich was an important ceremonial centre built around AD 600 near the end of the Maya Late Classic Period, boasting a population of some 10,000 people at its peak, and apparently continued to thrive while other Maya centres such as Tikal and Caracol were in decline. However by around 1000 AD Xunantunich was abandoned.
So when the AARP says something, a big audience is listening. And recently the AARP named Belize as one of the top ten honeymoon destinations, sharing honours with Tahiti, the Maldives, Bali and other exotic tropical locations. Yes, tropical seems to be a key element for a happy honeymoon. But of course, it takes more than a warm sunny climate to make the AARP’s top ten. This is a discriminating group looking for the very best for its members, so no wonder Belize got a nod.
Huge Maya City found near Belize and Mexico border line: Noh Kah
According to Mexican Newspapers the Archaeologists from the National Institue of Anthropology and History (Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia) (INAH) confirmed today that there is an Ancient Mayan City approximated to be about 84 acres and is located in the jungles around the border line of Quintana Roo and Belize. The Ancient Mayan City was named Noh Kah, meaning Large City, and is believed to have existed more than one thousand five …
Belize’s The Lodge at Chaa Creek was recently honoured with a Certificate of Excellence from Trip Advisor, the world’s largest travel site, according to the popular Belizean eco-resort’s owners. “It’s very gratifying to be acknowledged by such a respected travel authority as Trip Advisor, and is something the entire Chaa Creek family takes pride in. The fact that Trip Advisor’s awards are based on customer reviews makes this distinction that much more valuable to us,” co-founding owner and GM Lucy Fleming said.
The festival celebrates all things cashew, and featured products such as that delightful cashew wine, as well as cakes, pies, pastries, syrups, vinegar and all sorts of other spinoffs. Belizeans have enjoyed the cashew in its many forms for generations, and probably nowhere as much as Crooked Tree, where the industry is at the heart of the local economy.
As part of our commitment at The Lodge at Chaa Creek is to work with our local communities in building awareness and educating our local people on conservation and preservation of our natural environment. And in that respect, as part of our community outreach program, today saw our “Butterfly on the Road” Program when two of our Naturalist Guides packed up their equipment and visited the Sacred Heart Primary School in San Ignacio Town.
Although they’re far to the north, the Canadian newspaper the Globe and Mail sounds close to Chaa Creek in Green philosophy, so we’re happy that they gave us special mention in a feature entitled: “Did you just book a green hotel (or was it green-washed)?”The article warns travellers to be discerning when booking a “Green” hotel; as for some it’s just a marketing ploy and doesn’t show a real commitment to sustainability.
The deadline for applying to the annual Eco Kids educational summer camp is drawing near, and the Lodge at Chaa Creek is urging young Belizeans between the ages of 8 and 13 years old to get on board! Officially known as the Children’s Summer Camp Scholarship Program, the Eco Kids camp is a great opportunity for young Belizeans to learn about their natural environment and develop skills while having fun during a weeklong jungle adventure.
So the next time you come across a Belizean iguana sunning itself or diving into the water as your canoe passes we hope you’ll see more than just some lazy lizard lounging around, and appreciate that here is another example of nature’s marvellous ability to adapt and evolve. And when you consider that he or she is just one of hundreds of thousands of crucial components to Belize’s rainforest habitat, a habitat of amazing interdependence and diversity, we hope that you’ll share our sense of never ending excitement and appreciation for the sheer elegance of our natural world.
And why not? With the pristine Macal River gently flowing past the front door and a fleet of well-maintained canoes at your disposal, canoeing is one of the activities at Chaa Creek that consistently delights guests of all ages. Even people who have never been in a canoe before discover just how enjoyable this age-old pastime is in Belize.