We’ve been checking the news, and I waited for a certain item to appear before I broke it to my family:
“We’re going back to Belize!”
Which was quickly followed by a chorus of various forms of “Yay!”
Even she-who-carefully-watches-over -finances joined in.
We’d been carefully following the news to confirm that Belize’s Philip Godson International Airport, aka the PGIA, was ready to welcome us back after the first of October, and now we could make our bookings at The Lodge at Chaa Creek.
For those of you who think travelling to Belize with two children – sorry, a pre-teen and her younger brother – is an odd choice right now, here are six reasons why we’re excited.
1 Belize is easy to get to
Where we live, getting to Belize means a drive to the city airport and then a three-hour direct flight to Belize’s Philip Goldson International Airport. The short time keeps the kids from being bored, and the wife from worrying about too many contacts and social interactions.
And considering all the complementary activities and free stuff to do, a Chaa Creek vacation is surprisingly easy on the budget.
2 Chaa Creek is in Belize
After landing, clearing customs and passing the new health checks, we’ll look forward to meeting our Chaa Creek driver and taking that leisurely, scenic drive to our rainforest lodgings. Depending on how we’re feeling, we’ll take advantage of visiting the aptly described “Best Little Zoo in The World” on our way in, or save it for the ride out.
3 It’s Worry-Free
We’ve been following the news, and we’re reassured by the measures Belize and Chaa Creek have taken to make sure we’re all safe – including the government’s impressive Tourism Gold Standard Recognition Program. Knowing that Chaa Creek was one of the first resorts to be Gold Certified goes a long way to putting our minds at ease.
4 Chaa Creek has built-in social distancing
Meeting the affable owners Mick and Lucy Fleming at their Jungle Lounge, and learning how they slowly built Chaa Creek from the farm they started in the 1970s, explained why all the buildings are so nicely spaced apart with room for gardens and green space. It’s nice to know that, while masks and other common-sense precautions are de rigueur in shared areas, we can relax in our suite, veranda, and other places.
5 There’s so much to do
Besides onsite amenities like an excellent restaurant, the big infinity pool, the Belize Natural History Museum and Butterfly Farm, the Hilltop Spa’s al fresco massages, there are enough activities to keep an energetic ten-year-old boy, picky preteen girl and their parents from ever being bored.
Last year, for example, Chaa Creek’s naturalist guides took us – especially my son- from being bird watchers to avid birders, and this year we’ll be walking the miles of trails running through the Lodge’s 400-acre private nature reserve with our binoculars, cameras, field guides and checklists.
We also learned to ride horses and canoe, and can’t wait to get back in the saddle and back on the Macal River again this year.
6 The food is awesome
Farm-to-Table dining seems all the rage these days, but Chaa Creek’s onsite Maya Organic Farm makes it the real deal. From signature Belize Fusion cuisine blending Maya, Creole, Mestizo, Garifuna and classic European and American styles, to fresh Caribbean seafood, to the pizzas and burgers the kids crave, dining – whether in the airy thatched-roof Mariposa Restaurant, in our lodgings with private verandas or around the pool – is another major attraction.
And with all the swimming and other healthy exercise, indulgence is guilt-free.
There are other reasons, like the relationships we built with friendly staff members who treated us like family, the stunning natural beauty, and so on, but this hopefully answers our friends and family’s “why are you going back to Belize right now?”
Well, because it’s awesome.
And safe, and relaxing, and exciting, and…we really deserve a break right now. A week at Chaa Creek will help us all remember what life is really all about – and that’s priceless. Check it out – maybe we’ll see you there.