It’s been a while since we posted any kind of tour story from Belize, so we’re happy to announce we’ve got one up now from associate editor Lydia Carey. Called Beautiful Belize by Land and by Sea, it’s the kind of trip that attracts many to Belize: a few days in the jungle, then a few days by the sea.
This one split the time between two different jungle lodges in the Cayo district. First it was The Lodge at Chaa Creek Rainforest Reserve, a long-established complex with 365 acres of land. (One for each day of the year perhaps?) Known for its strong conservation stance and excellent guides, this is nevertheless a lodge that’s going to please those looking for some pampering. Especially those booked in the “treetops Jacuzzi suites.” The spa with a view has a long menu of treatments and you can swim in an infinity pool. The big draw here would be the tours though, with some of the best trained guides in Central America.
Chaa Creek guests can choose from a number of on–site activities for no extra charge: early morning bird–watching walks, swimming in the Macal, hiking the trails, or venturing out in one of their canoes––San Ignacio is a two–hour paddle downstream, or you can work your way upstream to the Belize Botanic Garden.
The tour then moved on to Hidden Valley Reserve, a 12-cabin resort that has an incredible 7,290 acres of land around it. That leads to 90 miles of trails on the property, including to a hidden waterfall in the jungle. There’s also an excursion to the Mayan ruins of Caracol before the regular visitors arrive: a special perk of Hidden Valley guests. Staying here is a guilt-free experience too: all profits go toward maintaining the nature reserve.
The group then boarded a prop plane for the short flight out to Ambergris Caye, where they traveled by boat to the end of the island for a secret: El Secreto. This recent addition to the luxury lodging choices in Belize is a stunning property. On a gorgeous beach (surprisingly rare in this country) and a short hop to the world’s second-longest barrier reef, this is a place to explore underwater and then return to an excellent meal by the shimmering pool. Your own pool maybe: the villas around the lagoon have their own private plunge pools.
Alas, eventually it’s time to go home, so after a quick trip to the main airport, the group returned home via the rapidly expanding Avianca Airlines.
See our detailed luxury tour story on Beautiful Belize by Land and by Sea.