My husband and I are frantically trying to put a vacation together for March 26-April 3rd. We are hoping to split our time b/t San Pedro and Caves Branch. We are a little familair with Caves Branch b/c my sister went there BUT she was with a large group of friends so some of her experiences don't apply. We are currently thinking of staying at Belizian Shores. Our options are limited b/c of availabilty. Our other choices were the Mayan Princess, Exotic Cay, and Auxillou Beach Suites. Any input? ANY ADVICE on what we need, where we should go, how to save a buck, where to snorkel, how to transport etc. would be much appreciated! I'm a big research/planner so it is very unlike me to put something like this together so last minute. I'm a little freaked out. I'm gonna need a vaca from planning my vaca so last minute!
My sister and I stayed at Belizean Shores Jan. 21-28 and loved it. Go the the trip reports and photograph section of this board and check my trip report and photos (by Xoe); there are a number of photos of Belizean Shores (interior and exterior shots), as well as information about amenities, places to eat, and the excursions we took. It should be helpful to you.
Of the Ambergris Caye options that you are considering (Axillou is on Caye Caulker so I don't know it personally) I think that Belizean Shores is the definitely the nicest in terms of amenities. However it is the furthest from town (I'd guess about 4 miles) and you may feel a little 'out of the way'. Some people really like that but if you're not that type, closer might be better.
Newfoundlanders are the only people in heaven who want to go home.
Snorkel prices are very similar between tour guides. We really enjoyed Alfonso Graniel "L'il Alfonse" and plan to go with him again when we return in a few weeks.
Cave river tubing was a fun excursion.
We flew Tropic Air to San Pedro and the view were stunning. The water taxi is cheaper but I've never done it so I can't say. We flew out of BZE (Goldston Int'l) to get to SPR, but returned to the mainland via the municipal airport to continue the trip inland. Both were fine. You may want to check prices at each, keeping in mind that you need to enter and exit the country only from BZE. Municipal can be used if your resort sends a shuttle there for guest pickup or dropoff...it might be cheaper.
Originally posted by Xoe: My sister and I stayed at Belizean Shores Jan. 21-28 and loved it. Go the the trip reports and photograph section of this board and check my trip report and photos (by Xoe); there are a number of photos of Belizean Shores (interior and exterior shots), as well as information about amenities, places to eat, and the excursions we took. It should be helpful to you.
Thank you! I did find your photo's extremly helpful and informative! I can't believe that you got such detailed snorkeling shots with a disposable underwater cam! I do have a few ?'s for ya... when you go back this time will you still stay on the north end of the island even if not at Belizean Shores? I was just wondering if it is a big inconvience to have to cross the water every time you want to go to town? Also curious how the BS beach is for swimming? There are a few places on the south end that are cheaper than BS. Trying to find our best fit. Thanks again!
I would love to go back to Belizean Shores, and hope to do that in the future. We looked at other places and did not find any place we liked better; most others we did not like nearly as well.
However, for my next trip, in May, I am booked at Mata Rocks, which I also expect to like. Because I am going by myself in May, I do not need a large condo, and prefer not to pay for space I don't need. It will be an interesting and different perspective to be south of town.
I did not find it an inconvenience to use the water taxi to go to town, and liked the quiet of the north area. The shore excursion operators pick you up at the pier -- no problem.
There seems to be a consensus on this board that there is not very good "beach swimming" on Ambergris Caye. If you love to swim, the pool at Belizean Shores is exceptional. Snorkeling and diving and fishing are wonderful there (well also Mayan ruins and restaurants -- the list goes on!).
I think if you are trying to save $$ you should be thinking of staying in or S of town. Those water taxis back & forth to Bz Shores will really add up. Mayan Princess or Exotic Caye would probably end up being cheaper overall. Both have nice accommodations with EC being a bit more full service (restaurant, bar with live music, pool). MP is on the beach right in town so easy walking distance to everything and has great balconies overlooking the sea. Auxillou Suites is on a different island than the rest, but they are very nice units, and overall, Caulker is cheaper than Ambergris (food, tours, etc).