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#76425 - 11/19/03 06:36 PM Another trip report
Retired2000 Offline
Another first time visitor “Trip Report”

My wife and I just returned from a week on AC and I want to put my two cents worth in.

First off, we are very well traveled, throughout the Caribbean, Europe and the Mediterranean. We decided to come to Belize for the scuba, and we had never been there before.

We spent a day looking around at hotels, etc., and AC does have a very wide range of hotels/resorts, from high end to really basic! Lan Sluder’s evaluations appear very accurate. Outside of the hotels, the infrastructure on AC is primitive. The restaurants are just OK, and if you want a fine meal you will pay a fine price – and still may get just an average meal. The cost of everything on AC, from basics to souvenirs, is very high. First time we have found prices at airport shops lower than local shops! I guess after monitoring this message board for a few months we had expected more. The “Green Guide” is little more than a booklet of advertisements.

We do give high marks to Zak and Peter and the Protech dive shop. Their equipment is tops and the personnel are very professional and personable.

We did have a good time and accomplished what we had planned, despite the wet weather. We are glad we came to AC, but if we come back to Belize, we will probably try one of the mainland resorts.

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#76426 - 11/19/03 10:24 PM Re: Another trip report
seashell Offline
Ya either become an ACoholic or ya don't. Doesn't seem to be much middle ground.

Regardless, I agree with you on some points. The prices are generally out of proportion to what you could get many other similar places. However, there is still something special about San Pedro, that calls to me (and calls me back) more than any other place I have been in the world. That includes SE Asia, the South Pacific, and numerous places in Mexico and the Caribbean. And so, because of that, I've been willing to overlook some of the overpricing. I also quit eating in the "finer" eateries and found my favorites that were sure to deliver a good meal for a decent price. All that said, I'm sure you didn't make it to every restaurant in San Pedro and so may have missed some of the better ones.

I am sorry it didn't touch you too. Perhaps the weather kept it from you. Best of luck on your next vacation.

Oh by the way, where did you stay and how did you find those accommodations?
_________________________
A fish and a bird can fall in love, but where will they build their nest?


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#76427 - 11/19/03 11:21 PM Re: Another trip report
Tippy Offline
What restaurant did you eat at.

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#76428 - 11/20/03 01:16 AM Re: Another trip report
Chris Offline
IMO....

You're right, the Green Guide "is little more than a booklet of advertisements."

The thing is, that "little more" is, for many people, useful and sometimes priceless information.

He he....hilarious trip report....complains about the prices (somewhat justified in certain cases) and then complains about the only useful thing on the island that is free!

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#76429 - 11/20/03 01:37 AM Re: Another trip report
Bobber Offline
Good question, where did you eat? The best food and cheapest prices are generally the spots with local ambiance. The fancier the spot, the higher the prices, and the food is not necessarily better.
_________________________
Been there, done that, the washing machine ate the T-shirt

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#76430 - 11/20/03 02:05 AM Re: Another trip report
JoeB Offline
As a repeat (and soon to make the trip again) visitor to AC I never cease to be mildly perplexed by such trip reports. While as a simple visitor I hesitate to try to 'sum-up' AC in a few words, even cursory research reveals it to be a 'largely off the beaten path, not-yet overdeveloped, awesome dive / water sport location with extremely friendly people and a laid back ambience'. "The infrastructure ... is primitive?" ... I only wish I'd had to opportunity to visit 20 years ago! I can only hope the high-rises and chain restaurants continue to confine their development to neighbor Cancun. It's precisely that small town-feel, augmented by the friendly and exceptionally tolerant Belizeans, that contribute to laid back ambience. Local shop prices higher than at the airport? ... EVERYTHING is brought in by plane or barge! Of course imported items are expensive! Taking the time to get off-resort to find the bargains is half the fun. A Celi's Deli chicken makes the basis for a 2-person feast for under $10, while the street vendors at town-center make a delicious variety of filling eats that put a smile on even the most budget-conscious. Rainy weather? Just means you're forced to do more scuba diving (it's not raining underwater!)! My top 10 list for 1st visitors to AC would have to include a lazy breakfast at Estelle's under a palapa, snorkeling Skark Ray Alley, a splurge for dinner at the Jerk Pit (on the roof of course), mingling with the masses over a street-burger or plate of chicken and rice at the town-center, and doing the buffet at the Chicken Drop. I can't help but guess that - at most - you only did one of these things. I thank goodness that to all these qualities AC adds awesome spur-and-groove diving within 5 minutes of shore, directed by highly experienced professionals with modern equipment, for as little as $20 a dive ... you can't go wrong! I just hope word of this jewel doesn't spread TOO quickly ...

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#76431 - 11/20/03 02:12 AM Re: Another trip report
alke ach Offline
Joe , could you finish your top ten please.

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#76432 - 11/20/03 03:35 AM Re: Another trip report
LaurieMar Offline
Just goes to show, AC is not for everybody, but it sure is one of my favorite places in the world as far as people, food and of course, adult beverages and the bars (BCs and Crazy Canucks both rock!). I couldn't stand Cancun and can do without Hawaii, but the snorkeling in Cozumel is hard to beat (the only place I have ever seen a seahorse and sea turtle) - that was the only thing I was a bit disappointed with in Belize. But, then again, I am not a scuba diver.

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#76433 - 11/20/03 03:38 AM Re: Another trip report
klcman Offline
Laurie -

next time you're there, take trip up to Bacalar Chico - have yet to NOT see at least one turtle, even snorkeling wink tohse critters sure swim a helluva lot faster than they crawl laugh
_________________________
_ _ _ _ _ _ _________________ _ _ _ _ _ _
But then what do I know, I am but a mere caveman

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#76434 - 11/20/03 03:52 AM Re: Another trip report
seashell Offline
As for the word-usage "primitive", I prefer to consider it "quaint". smile

If you consider the most visited area of Belize as "primitive" what do you suppose you will find more appealing to you on the mainland? Not that I would in any way be trying to discourage you from visiting again. I'm just curious to understand your thinking on this issue.

And in that regard, I'm trying to figure out what places you are comparing to San Pedro. Where else have you been visiting? 5 star all-inclusives? St. Martin? St. Thomas? St. Croix? French Riviera, London, Paris, Rome, Athens, Greek Islands? Or places like Bequia and Saba?

By the way, what resort did you stay at and how long have you been diving?
_________________________
A fish and a bird can fall in love, but where will they build their nest?


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