After reading and taking notes here for a few months, I felt I was well prepared for our family trip to Belize and in general, I was. The fly in the ointment was that 2 days prior to our departure we had to suddenly put down our 13.5 yr old Dalmatian and some trip details didn't get handled. We left for the airport at 3 am 12/17 without the list of restaurants, phone numbers and the like that I'd planned to print out - only what remained in my brain from reading and one written review of Alphonse!

The abbreviated review is that this was
#1 the trip of a lifetime and
#2 met every single item on not only my wish list but also my husbands and my kids.

Caves Branch Jungle Lodge was the beginning of our trip - cannot recommend it highly ehough - IF you are interested in that kind of trip - it is not everyone's cup of tea. We had a blast beginning to end. I could go on and on but this is an Ambergris board so I'll save it.

Ramon's is a lovely resort (according to many here pricey but we had nothing to compare it to), very nice accommodations and staff. Other than breakfast we ate elsewhere to experience as much AC as possible. Food is very subjective so I probably won't do reviews. We wanted to snorkel with Alphonse but I didn't bring contact info. Asking around and trying to use the phone book was futile (try looking up 'lil' Alphonse' sometime!) but finally a woman in one of the offices near the front desk overheard me and came out - he's her neighbor and she got a number for us - success! He is awesome, we were blown away by his knowledge and had a great time. Then I remembered another name from the lists that I never had a chance to print out and aksed him if he knew how we could go fishing with Pete Granielle (I'm sure I butchered that spelling) and what d'ya know? That's his dad! so we got that #, too, only he was booked solid until after we were scheduled to leave. So we snorkeled 2 more times with Alphonse - all different places - and each time was great.

There is tremendous diversity in Belize for such a small country - we saw so much but could not begin to do it all. My 20 yr old intends to go back to Caves Branch and take their Medical, Wilderness and Survival training. My husband and I want to explore some of the coastal towns and smaller cayes and my 16 year old just wants to go back!

We had a great time...........Belize it!