Belize Featured in Caribbean Travel & Life Magazine
--Belize City, Monday, April 4th, 2005­ Belize was featured in a 3-page article in the March 2005 edition of Caribbean Travel & Life Magazine, a consumer magazine that covers dozens of diverse countries, colonies and cultures, and thousands of resorts, restaurants, beaches and attractions. Its main focus is on the Caribbean and the Magazine has a circulation of 150,000. The article was written by Kathy Mangan, a travel writer who visited Belize in June of 2004.

The title of the article was “Belize’s Living Arts – Can a Culture be considered a Masterpiece?” and its main focus was the Garifunas. The author elucidated that the first culture in the Caribbean to earn this distinction was that of the Garifunas of Central America, whose language, music and dance were proclaimed a Masterpiece of Humanity by UNESCO in 2001. The author went on to mention that there are 15,000 Garifuna in Belize and there is a strong renaissance in the traditional music, dance, craftsmanship and fine arts integral to their cultural identity.

The author spoke of her meeting on Garifuna drumming with performer, Joshua Arana and her interview with master craftsman Austin Rodriguez. She also met with Deputy Administrator of the National Institute of Culture and History and singer/songwriter Andy Palacio, who hosted Belize’s first Garifuna music program. While in Dangriga, she interviewed Benjamin Nicholas, a Dangriga-based visual storyteller. She stated that his works appear in international collections and are often presented to visiting dignitaries by the Belize government. The author culminated by stating that “the best way to experience the culture is on Garifuna Settlement Day, celebrated on November 19th with exuberant singing and dancing, drumming and partying that rages until dawn.”

“We are delighted to share our country, our culture and our people in honor of one of our major ethnic groups in Belize, the Garifuna,” comments Tourism Director, Tracy Taegar-Panton. “Belize is a diverse and distinctive vacation destination where visitors would find our mix of cultures, including the Garifuna, Creole, Mestizo, Maya, Mennonite, Chinese an East Indian to be uniquely Belizean. While this article focuses on the Garifuna culture, we expect that future articles will reflect Belize’s other diverse ethnic Groups.”

Caribbean Travel & Life is written for upscale traveler interested in vacationing in the Caribbean. Contents include shopping, dining and lodging ideas, cover the arts and entertainment in the area, and offer suggestions on sights and locations to visit.