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#314133 - 12/09/08 03:12 AM Planning first trip to Belize--suggestions?
CindaBee Offline

I've been wanting to laze around in Belize for years and after a few trips to the Caribbean, have convinced hubby it's a great idea. I have NO idea where to stay, where to eat, nothin' other than everyone I know who has been there says "you gotta go." Was lucky enough to find this forum and am hoping you vets will help me out.

Planning to leave northeastern Ohio late March/early April. Airfare is very affordable at that time. Have seen lots of possible/reasonable places to stay, both on this forum and others. Would like to be on the beach or within easy walking distance--in a place with some good local food and "watering" places. We really like local foods and local bars--not fans of resorts or big hotels. Prefer to experience the culture and shop locally. Love to snorkel, don't mind organized trips as long as they're reputable. Would like to be somewhere where we can either walk or bicycle to markets/dinner/bars--don't want to have to use a car unless absolutely necessary.

Sorry to be so specific, but hoping some kind souls on this forum have some sage advice.

Have a wonderful holiday and looking forward to some great advice.


#314134 - 12/09/08 03:17 AM Re: Planning first trip to Belize--suggestions? [Re: CindaBee]
Mary1220 Offline
there are several 6 month rentals at Belize Yacht club. I can give you connections. It is not the new best place but great location and ocean front. PM me for more info.

#314143 - 12/09/08 04:04 AM Re: Planning first trip to Belize--suggestions? [Re: CindaBee]
skippy Offline
"Sorry to be so specific"

Don't be sorry. Be happy. You've just described Ambergris Caye and San Pedro in particular to a T.
I hope that someday we can put aside our fears and prejudices and just laugh at people.

#314144 - 12/09/08 04:09 AM Re: Planning first trip to Belize--suggestions? [Re: skippy]
reaper Offline
Belizean Reef Condos, The Palms, SunBreeze Hotel. Check them out in the lodging section.

#314148 - 12/09/08 04:21 AM Re: Planning first trip to Belize--suggestions? [Re: CindaBee]
azbob Offline
It would help to let us know what kind of price range you are looking for. Reasonable is relative. I stayed at Ruby's Hotel twice this year a $60/night (clean but very basic - no tv, relephone or internet). I'm going in Feb. and have made reservation at Belizean Reef condos(everything) at $135/night. Both are in town and close to local bars (BC'S, etc.) and lots of great eating places. You can also go down to $10/night and up to $300+. You will get lots of great advice! smile

Edited by azbob (12/09/08 04:22 AM)
"Hold on Tight To Your Dreams" ELO

#314154 - 12/09/08 04:50 AM Re: Planning first trip to Belize--suggestions? [Re: azbob]
Moose In Belize Offline
You definitely don't need a car. Go to www.youtube.com and search "san pedro belize" and watch the footage of people driving through town and you will know what I mean. You will find at least 6 great restaurants just by walking along the beach front in town. I would suggest you stay in a place overlooking the Caribbean. You will pay more but the view of the reef and the atmosphere are worth the extra $$$. You will need insect repellant, so either bring your own or be prepared to buy it once you arrive. Prepare to dress casually. Groceries are expensive, but beer isn't.
Moose Keep an open mind and something good may fall in.

#314159 - 12/09/08 05:37 AM Re: Planning first trip to Belize--suggestions? [Re: CindaBee]
Dan Carey Offline
Originally Posted By: CindaBee
Would like to be on the beach or within easy walking distance--in a place with some good local food and "watering" places. We really like local foods and local bars--not fans of resorts or big hotels. Prefer to experience the culture and shop locally. Love to snorkel, don't mind organized trips as long as they're reputable. Would like to be somewhere where we can either walk or bicycle to markets/dinner/bars--don't want to have to use a car unless absolutely necessary.

Hey CindaBee,
you may want to avoid the Easter holiday, because things get busy around then. Easter is April 12th, if I'm not mistaken. Two local hotels that might work for you are the Holiday Hotel and Ruby's. They're right next door to each other, on the beach. The Holiday is nicer and costs more. Changes in Lattitudes is okay too, but it's not directly on the beach. I've stayed at Ramon's, which is upscale rustic.

Food in town is quite good. Prices range from cheap tacos and street vendors to white tablecloth restaurants, although dress codes are relaxed. I recommend the Sunday barbeque at BC's and a nice supper at the Blue Water Grill. It might be good to wear a sorong over a bikini, for example. An aloha shirt and sandals is okay for any place I've been.

There aren't many cars on the island, with the exception of quite a few kamazaki cab drivers. Resist the temptation to rent a golf cart, unless you really need it. Walk the beach instead-unless you get a remote hotel it's easier to walk than drive. All of the places I've recommended are within a quarter mile or so.

You're pretty much stuck with organized tours from San Pedro Town. The interesting sites are primarily on the mainland, and getting there without a guide might be more stressful than you'd really like. The snorkling is far enough offshore to where you wouldn't want to swim it, although you might be able to sea kayak out to the reef if you're hardy.

Why don't you tell us what you like to do and what sort of hotels you like, so we can be more specific. How long do you want to stay on the island? Do you want to overnight on the mainland? What about long range expeditions, for example to Tikal? Do you want to see caves, rivers or ruins? Fishing? What's your plan?


"Facts are the enemy of Truth"
Don Quixote

#314177 - 12/09/08 02:11 PM Re: Planning first trip to Belize--suggestions? [Re: Dan Carey]
2Aggies Offline
Hey Cindabee - You found the right place for GOOD advice. Keep reading this board and you'll figure out who's in the know. We made our first trip in Sept/Oct and I had been reading the board for over 3 months. I even recognized faces at several "watering" holes. We quickly found out a cart is not needed. We stayed at Xanadu and they have bikes for free. Preferred to walk the beach though. Easy, Easy 15 minute walk to downtown (depending on the number of beverage breaks). There are many low key, smaller places to stay. You sound like us, local foods, small resort, close to things but not on top of them. You will LOVE San Pedro. Take the time to look on the off beaten paths. My wife keeps a pretty detailed journal and it is in the trip report section.
Lots of real fun open air bars. You will find everyone talks to everyone if you want to be in the conversations. You will get good advice that way too.
Read this board, but keep in mind there are some posters with an agenda. (ignore the political threads, these conversations don't happen openly down there, and don't worry they keep Pugwash on a leash) Sorry Pug, couldn't resist.
Take the taxi's if you are staying very far from town. $5US tops. We mostly used them if it was late and we had been enjoying the bars. In 8 days we spent in taxi fare about what a cart would have cost for 1 day! You can hail a cab almost anywhere( except North of cut), so if you are staying remote, just walk out to the road and start walking. Within a block you'll get a ride. We looked at the North end while diving. Very nice resorts, but bigger and not as convenient to quick trips into town. Also shopping and local eateries are towards town and South end.
Good luck and go very casual. Shopping around, things are not as expensive as some people make it out to be. We grocery shopped at 4 different locations, but it was not a hassel. More of an adventure. Ask around for local "food dives" and do not be afraid to eat from the street vendors or a hole in the wall. They have great food.
Look for Alex, cutest kid with bracelets, anklets, and such. Ms. 2ag's favorite and he is very polite.
Play, Love, Share and Enjoy - it doesn't last forever make sure you get the most out of it.

#314188 - 12/09/08 03:29 PM Re: Planning first trip to Belize--suggestions? [Re: 2Aggies]
Danny2 Offline
CindaBee, check into the Banana Beach and their web page. The 3rd floor corner rooms ocean front are the best. We stayed there three times and would go back for sure. We're from Chesterland , where from north east Ohio are you at. No matter what you will have a great time and be sure to go to Pedro's for pizza and beer.

#314197 - 12/09/08 04:21 PM Re: Planning first trip to Belize--suggestions? [Re: Danny2]
Mikeywaz Offline
We stayed at Ruby's - right in town and on the beach with a great view for $60/night. Very basic room, but it was perfect for the cost.

Edited by Mikeywaz (12/09/08 04:23 PM)


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