Belize City, August 10th 2005. Belize was prominently featured in an 8-page article of the August 2005 issue of Sports Diver Magazine. Sports Diver is notably the official publication of the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI). It caters to an estimated audience of 250,000. The article was written by columnist Doug Perrine who visited Belize in January of this year on a trip organized by the Belize Tourism Board.
Perrine’s article entitled, “Journey to Xibalba,” focuses on Belize’s inland experience of cave exploration, deep in the realm of the lords of the Maya underworld. He takes readers along on his journey while floating on an inner tube through the cave system at Jaguar Paw’s Jungle Resort. After flying through the rainforest canopy on a zipline aerial trek, a short flight takes him to the depths of the warm Caribbean off Ambergris Caye.
The author goes on to describe the general laid back atmosphere of Ambergris and his incredible experiences at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve where he raves, “Every dive is like a descent into an explosion of marine life.” At the Turneffe Atoll, Perrine is immersed in what he calls ‘splendid isolation.’ Then, seen from the air, a perfect circle, the Blue Hole, is the last on the list of Perrine’s dive adventures. It is actually the caved-in remnant of a subterranean cavern, “Something every diver should experience,” encourages Perrine.
The last leg on his tour takes him on a 1.5 hour boat ride from Belize City to Lamanai Outpost Lodge where he is introduced to a “birders” paradise. Set on a jungle hillside, facing a magnificent lagoon, Perrine informs his readers that the core attraction at is the site of a 3,000 year old Maya city. This time, he takes them through sprawling ball courts, over huge stone pyramids and describes the impressive carvings that were the handiwork of the long departed Maya. “As much as I enjoy Belize’s diving, it as become only a part of my fascination with this remarkable nation,” concludes Perrine.