Belize would not be the Belize that we know and love if it wasn’t for the many contributions of the Garifuna, and their proud history if one of the most interesting and enduring sagas humanity has known, beginning with a fateful shipwreck off St Vincent’s Island in the Caribbean in the 1600s, when surviving African slaves made it to shore and mixed with the local Arawak, or Carib, population.
“It’s a wonderful theme that perfectly encapsulates what Belize is all about, and we wanted to take the time out to thank Emogen for condensing what’s so great about Belize into one theme. We also want to congratulate her for winning the nationwide competition to find that perfect theme,” Mrs Fleming said.
Avid travellers will tell you, to really get to know a place you’ve got to try the local food. In Belize, “local” food is an eclectic collection of dishes with strong influences from the country’s many diverse cultures; like the Creole; Maya;Garifuna; Mestizo offered along with Caribbean; American; Indian and Chinese cuisine. While each culture uses unique flavours and cooking techniques, they all benefit from ingredients like fresh from the nut coconut milk, garden grown herbs and spices, organic fruits and vegetables and freshly caught seafood.
Growing up in Belize, James Lovell heard the Garifuna language from his parents and his grandparents; he understood it but he didn’t speak it. He spoke the language of the streets, Belizean Creole. He didn’t think much about Garifuna until the day he heard the music of a local artist Pen Cayetano and his Turtleshell Band.