READER REPORT:

Adventures on land and sea in Belize

TIBOR INCZE
Last updated 05:00 28/05/2014
Belize
ELLEN CREAGER

TO THE TOP: Unlike many other Mayan ruins, visitors can climb up a series of stairs either part way or all the way to the top of El Castillo.

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We took a trip to Belize for our honeymoon and it had all of the elements we enjoy, both relaxation, and a good dose of adventure and history.

All of this without having to worry about understanding or speaking a foreign language because it's an English speaking country nestled among many other Spanish speaking ones.

In addition, it's a small country size wise, so quite easy to visit most of its attractions in a week or two.

Belize is located in Central America, just at the southern tip of Mexico.

It is part of the ancient Mayan Empire, so it has several Mayan pyramids that are quite impressive.

You can walk to the tops of these and enjoy the views above the jungle.

We enjoyed the nice cool hike through the jungle to get to it, although where it was cleared - where the buildings stood - it tended to be quite hot.

If you're more of a beach type, then Key Caulker and Ambergris Keys have plenty to do that are not limited to lying on the beach, although that's nice sometimes too.

We stayed on Key Caulker, which was smaller, and less resorty, in a small family budget accommodation.

Ambergris is more for those who enjoy and can afford resorts.

On Key Caulker, we went snorkelling, and on a tour where we got to feed stingrays.

This wasn't a remote viewing from the boat, but rather we got out in fairly shallow water, and had stingrays all around our legs feeding. It was amazing!

If you're looking for a Robinson Crusoe type experience, which we were, you can take a boat out to Glover's Atoll where you can live on a beautiful tiny island for a few days.

No electricity, no cooling, but plenty of snorkelling/diving/fishing right off the beach.

In the evening you can light a fire and cook your fish, then retire to the quiet bungalows for a peaceful rest.

But by far the best adventure experience to be had in Belize which we took part in was the Actun Tunichil Muknal cave tour.

This consisted of a bumpy 4WD ride across rivers and to the base of the jungle, then a nice hike through the jungle, including at least one river crossing.

When we stopped for lunch we were at the base of a river that was flowing out of a cave.

We didn't expect that we would go upriver, but that's exactly what we did.

Wading through waist-deep water, with head torches on, our group went deep into the cave, then took a side road to another higher level within the cave which had been used as a sacrificial chamber by the Mayans.

Our guides explained the history of such rituals and answered all our questions. There was definitely a palpable feel of adventure to the place.

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Our last few days there we took a lazy rafting trip down the river, and we even crossed over into Guatemala to see the amazing large scale Mayan monuments of Tikal.


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