6 Spectacular Day Trips in Belize
1. Dive two of the world’s top dive spots
Belize is one of the world’s most famous dive destinations, and its two main attractions are both within easy reach of our Ambergris Caye property.
The Great Blue Hole, more than 1,000 feet across and 400 feet deep, offers an almost religious diving experience. Several tour operators in San Pedro will take you on the three-hour boat ride to Belize’s most famous dive spot, located in the center of Lighthouse Reef. As you descend, you’ll pass majestic stalactites of up to three feet in diameter and perhaps even the odd bull or reef shark circling the depths. It’s been described as like swimming silently through a submerged gothic cathedral!
Banco Chinchorro, only about 40 miles from our Ambergris Caye property, is on the bucket list of many accomplished divers and truly must be seen to be believed. The final resting place of nearly 200 vessels, including a passenger ferry and two Spanish galleons that are still in good condition, Banco Chinchorro is also home to brilliant coral (including the black variety), turtles, lobsters, barracudas and more. A photographer’s paradise!
2. Snorkel the Belize Barrier Reef
The Belize Barrier Reef is the second-longest barrier reef in the world and is one of the planet’s most diverse ecosystems. It’s also right on the doorstep of our Ambergris Caye property – just a short swim away!
The Belize Barrier Reef is home to more than 500 known species of fish and, with only an estimated 10% of the reef fully explored, many more will surely be discovered. The water is warm, the colors are mesmerizing and the variety of sea life is nothing short of spectacular.
For more comprehensive reef exploration, several tour operators in San Pedro offer snorkeling tours to the reef, including hot spots like Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark-Stingray Alley.
3. Spot wildlife in the Bacalar Chico
A UNESCO World Heritage Site for its unusually high biodiversity, the Bacalar Chico National Park & Marine Reserve awaits your exploration on the doorstep of our Ambergris Property. Bacalar Chico’s swamps, grasslands and forests are home to manatees, crocodiles, numerous bird species and all six of Belize’s wildcats. Hiring a boat to tour the park’s ancient, hand-dug Mayan canals is an unforgettable experience for any nature-lover.
1. Get your city fix in Chetumal & the Belize Free Zone
Just nine miles from Corozal, the bustling city of Chetumal, Mexico, offers all the culture, cuisines and attractions of a modern city, within easy reach of our Consejo property. So if your days golfing, sailing and soaking in the Belizean sun leave you craving a hit of urban excitement, Chetumal is close at hand.
For some local culture, visit the Museo de la Cultura Maya, a stunning immersion into the world of the Maya that includes a reconstructed temple set under Plexiglas that you can walk right over. Be sure to stop at “the Free Zone” along the way. Straddling the border between Belize and Mexico, the Free Zone offers many diverse shopping options and several casinos to entertain you.
2. Explore Lamanai: “the Submerged Crocodile”
Shrouded by the dense jungle canopy on the banks of the New River Lagoon, the ancient city of Lamanai is one of Belize’s most fascinating Mayan sites. A tour of Lamanai begins with a boat ride up the New River, where you’ll see all kinds of birds, tropical flowers and wildlife such as manatees, crocodiles and – of course – howler monkeys.
Once a major Mayan center, Lamanai was still occupied when the Spanish arrived; it’s one of the few Mayan sites to retain its original name (Lamanai means “submerged crocodile”). Its 33-metre High Temple offers a humbling view of the jungle canopy, and an optional 1.5-mile hike through the forest rewards visitors with a view of the Jaguar Temple, one of the largest in Belize.
3. Ascend a temple with a view at Cerro Maya
The only Mayan site in Belize that occupies beachfront property, Cerro Maya consists of a series of temples built from around 50 BC. A bustling city that flourished as a trading center until about AD 150, Cerro Maya is easily within reach of tours leaving from our Consejo property.
Though most of the temples remain grass-covered mounds, the center plaza has been cleared. Climbing the 65-foot funerary temple offers a dazzling panorama of Corozal Bay, including Corozal Town and even our Consejo property. Several nearby oceanfront restaurants offer a picturesque break from your foray through history.