We are now in the depths of winter and I don’t know about you, but January just makes me dream of holidays. I’ve always had the urge to travel and see the World and so I spend most of January lusting over sunnier climates. If you missed it we got engaged last year and although we haven’t actually managed to get anywhere with planning our wedding, it doesn’t stop me dreaming of our Honeymoon.
Initially I though of Thailand, having been there before, I loved it, but I worry about the commercialism to what was a paradise and how much it will have changed in the 15 years since I was last there. So I’ve been looking for somewhere more untouched and stumbled upon the beauty that is Belize. An Island mainly untainted by tourism that has everything I look for in holidays all rolled into one, sun, beautiful beaches, rainforests, a barrier reef, historic ruins and a diverse culture to name a few. And there are the most amazing Belize beach rentals which would be perfect for a honeymoon.
Look at that place, isn’t it what dreams are made of? Well it’s definitely what my dreams are made of. I can just imagine waking up to the sound of the Ocean, having a coffee on our own private decking and lounging outside in the sun in our own tropical paradise, then watching the sun set together, perfection!
Drink rum punch under a palm tree, swing in a hammock, wander the streets finding places to buy souvenirs and enjoy local food. Belize is an Island where you can have a quiet, relaxing holiday if that is what you are after. You can even visit the island Spa.
And if get bored of the quiet life the there is so much to do.
Belize has the second largest Barrier Reef in the World! I can’t dive, but I can snorkel and love floating around looking at coral and fish. Going snorkelling again is on my bucket list and Belize with it’s Barrier Reef as a UNESCO World Heritage Site wouldn’t disappoint. The Belize Barrier Reef has seven key marine reserve zones, over four hundred cayes (islands) and three atolls. You can discover over five hundred species of fish, seventy hard coral and thirty six soft coral along with the breathtaking views above and below the water.
If you are a diver then The Blue Hole offers one of the best dive sites in the World. The large submarine sinkhole is 407 feet deep and the crystal-clear blue water allows you to see stalactites, and sharks, lots of sharks!
Mountain biking, hiking, caving, zip lining, horseback riding, kayaking, rapelling and tubing are just some of the things you can do. For me I would chose gliding through the rainforest canopy on a zip line and riding an inner tube down a lazy jungle river, while passing through a series of ancient Mayan caves. How amazing does that sound?
Image source: Yo Hak Belize Resort
Image source: Yo Hak Belize Resort
There’s something about stepping back in time in ancient ruins that fascinates me. So Caracol which is a 55 square-mile city that was once one of the most powerful cities in the Maya world would be amazing to see. Belize has the largest number of ancient Maya ruins in Central America. There is also Cerros, Lamanai, little villages and forest areas, pretty much anywhere you go here, you’ll find ancient Maya temples.
Image source: Travel Belize
A visit to the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary would also be on my holiday itinerary. Originally established to preserve the last remaining native jaguars from extinction, today you can see pumas, ocelots, margays, howler monkeys and more than 500 species of tropical birds like toucans and curassows in their natural habitat.
To protect the environment and to allow visitors to get an intimate experience, Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary has a large network of special trails where you can spend as little as an hour or up to as much as five days in the reserve. The hiking trails through the reserve pass by waterfalls, the rainforest and crystal clear streams, some of which can be floated down on inner tubes.
If swimming at the bottom of a waterfall doesn’t scream tropical island paradise I don’t know what does. One of the most magnificent waterfalls in Belize is Antelope Falls. You can hike all the way to the top of the 1,000 foot falls and enjoy the breathtaking view of the tropical rainforest and the Caribbean Sea from the top. Instead of hiking back down there is the option to take the exhilarating 250ft guided waterfall rappel down. You can then enjoy a refreshing swim in the emerald pools at the bottom of the falls. Bocawina Falls is also recommended as another amazing swimming spot.
All of this is what makes Belize a truly unique holiday destination. For us it would be the perfect mix of adventure and relaxation, with opportunities to do some amazing life experiences and still have time to sit with a cocktail in hand, on a beach, in a beautiful, tropical paradise.
Belize is now firmly on my travel bucket list and I think it should be on yours too!