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The San Pedro Sun

Under the Sun – Island Residents receive Master’s Degree from Galen University
Four island residents were amongst the 2014 graduating class of Galen Univesity on Sunday December 14th in Belize City. Career employee of the Belize Social Security Board (SSB) Miriam Lizet Cervantes Requeña graduated with a Master’s Degree from Galen University along with Officer in Charge of Development Finance Corporation (DFC) San Pedro Branch Nalleli Gilharry, San Pedro Junior College (SPJC) instructor Froylan Gilharry and Neima Gomez, all who graduated with a Master’s Degree. Cervantes-Requeña has served in various capacities at the Belize Social Security Board in the Cayo, Corozal, Orange Walk and Belize Districts. Originally from Orange Walk Town, Cervantes-Requeña has grown along with the Belize SSB having served for over 23 years. In August of 2013, she was promoted and transferred to Ambergris Caye as the Branch Manager of the SSB. Cervantes-Requeña graduated with honors.

Belize officially taken off the Red List by the EU
Oceana Belize commits to supporting GoB’s efforts to support EU goal Sustainability. Accountability. Progress. Those are the themes being emphasized by the world’s biggest fish importer, the European Union, as it continues to drive towards a global goal of the sustainable use of the oceans and collaboration in address the major threats confronting marine environments. And today, as Belize is officially taken off the Red List, (the list of countries deemed non-cooperative in fighting illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing) the importance of each country’s role in ocean governance and sustainable fisheries is highlighted.

Ambergris Caye is Trip Advisor’s #1 Emerging Destination in 2014
Trip Advisor has released their 2014 Travel Roundup & Trends Forecast for 2015. The Belize Tourism Board (BTB) is pleased to share that, as per the 2014 Outbound Travel Report, Ambergris Caye was the #1 Emerging Destination for 2014. “We are very proud of this acknowledgement of our destination. I am sure we can all agree that Ambergris Caye, and by extension, Belize, is deserving of this recognition. The work and investment put in by our private and public sector partners show the commitment to our Tourism Industry. With Trip Advisor being the world’s largest travel site which offers trusted reviews from real travelers and a variety of travel choices with planning features, I am sure that there will be even more interest in Belize which will translate into increased overnight arrivals for the destination as we move forward in 2015,” says BTB’s outgoing Director of Marketing & Industry Relations, Alyssa Carnegie.

Patrick JonesPJ

Traffic accident in Stann Creek leaves man hospitalized
While most Belizeans celebrated Christmas, a family from Maya Mopan village in the Stann Creek district was distraught after a loved one was involved in a road traffic accident. Eulogio Tush was driving his motorcycle and heading home around 12:30 pm on Christmas Day when he crashed in Santa Cruz village. A family member says that at the time of the crash, Tush was under the influence of alcohol.


The Fin K Christmas Lunch Spreads Community Love, Gifts & Food in San Pedro
When caught within the holiday whirlwind – food preparation, gift buying and wrapping, parties and family – it’s all too easy to forget about those who have less than you do. This year, my friend Fin decided to try to make a change, a big change – and spread a bit of the Christmas abundance that many in our community enjoy. He organized an AMAZING event, in large part with his friends and many, many supporters but also with the assistance of the relatively new “Raise Me Up” foundation in San Pedro. And TONS of his own hard work. The goal? Feed people and families in need a Christmas lunch that could be proudly presented on any table in the country – including the Prime Ministers – and just have a fun celebration for those who would truly enjoy it. Money, food, time, gifts were all donated by the community – I’ll list some of the participants at the end of my post. But take a look at the amazing event one San Pedrano was able to put together by having a simple but big idea – a Christmas “Soup Kitchen” – and by working super hard.

15 Things About Barton Creek Cave
Barton Creek Cave is one of the most beautiful underground Cathedrals that the ancient Maya used as a place of reverence to their incorporeal gods. The cave was carved into the art piece that it is by water cutting though the limestone mountain by gushes but for the most part, by ripples and drips. It was those ripples and drips that Italian renaissance and Romanesque sculptors would tip their hat, but the Gothic Sculptors would definitely go down on their knees. Here are 15 things you should know about this beautiful natural wonder: 1. The first archaeological investigation of Barton Creek Cave was conducted in the 1970’s by Barbara MacLeod and Carol J. Rushin-Bell. MacLeod and Rushin-Bell were Peace Corps volunteers 2. Barton Creek Cave is a large subterranean riverine system which could be as long as 10 kilometres

Women’s Retreat Fills Niche Market in Belize
A group of women entrepreneurs has established Reset Retreat, the first women’s wellness and adventure retreat in Belize focused on personal growth, and will launch their initial retreat February 18, 2015. Reset Retreat, an American company, offers daily private and group life coaching sessions during retreats. Their program has been developed to include a personality assessment to expose a persons’ natural tendencies and patterns to help break personal boundaries, conquer obstacles and maximize potential to reset perspective. “Our retreat gives you time and space to heal, reset and grow,” says co ­founder Cierra Savatgy-King. “Our prevailing intention is your growth and we ask that guests commit to making themselves the priority.”

International Sourcesizz

Belize's 'Blue Hole' May Hold Secret to Mayan Demise
Everything from overhunting and a peasant uprising to deforestation and an alien invasion has been proposed to explain why the Mayan civilization collapsed, Smithsonian notes. But one theory has been gaining ground in recent years: extreme drought. Now more evidence has surfaced to support the drought postulation—and the proof may just lie in Belize's most famous underwater cave. Rice University professor Andre Droxler's team analyzed sediment found in the "Great Blue Hole," a 410-foot-deep sinkhole in the middle of Lighthouse Reef, LiveScience reports. Not only did the chemical composition of the silt indicate periods of sparse rainfall during the Mayan decline (likely between AD800 and AD1000): It also showed that a second huge drought probably occurred between AD1000 and AD1100—right around the time the Mayans' relocation site of Chichen Itza was said to have fallen.

7 of the Oddest Travel Problems the Ombudsman Was Ever Asked to Resolve
Bats in the villa: On vacation in Belize, a family of four encountered sick and dead bats in its resort villa. The parents found one in their bed the first night they climbed into it. On another night, they came across a bat staggering across the floor, which the husband captured with an overturned bucket. A security guard had beaten another one to death with a stick for all to see. Apparently, the roof had recently been re-thatched, and bats were trapped in the layers. Prophylactic rabies vaccinations and tears followed. As a general rule, if you find a bat in your bed (or anything else that’s not supposed to be there), notify the front desk immediately and ask for other accommodations. In this case, there was some “he said, she said” between the resort and the family about who knew what, and when. Since there was no evidence of any bites, the resort said it was not obligated to reimburse the guests.

IMF study: Caribbean tourism share declining
A study examining what is driving the tourism flows in the Caribbean has found that the region’s share of the global tourism market is declining. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Working Paper titled “Revisiting Tourism Flows to the Caribbean: What is Driving Arrivals,” finds that tourism arrivals and expenditure are sensitive to both price and income factors in source markets; price and income elasticities of tourism have declined since 2008 and that price elasticity is statistically insignificant for “high-end” destinations. In addition, the study prepared by Nicole Laframboise, Nkunde Mwase, Joonkyu Park, and Yingke Zhou, also found that the nominal cost of an average one week beach holiday in the Caribbean is higher than in other beach destinations around the world. “These results point to the need for structural reforms to raise product quality, cost reduction or containment in “low-end” destinations, including possibly via exchange rates, and an adjustment in aggregate consumption to adapt to the implications of a lower contribution to GDP (gross domestic product) from tourism,” the study indicated.

PADI Calls Belize A World Class Scuba Diving Destination
As the saying goes, big things sometimes come in small packages. With Belize – the second smallest and least populated nation in Central America – this couldn’t be any truer as it packs a hemisphere’s worth of adventure within its borders. Located between Mexico and Guatemala, Belize is the perfect destination for exploration, relaxation and romance. With more than 400 islands, white sandy beaches, the longest unbroken barrier reef in the western hemisphere and 298 kilometers/185 miles of coastline, Belize is a world-class scuba diving destination. When you’re not diving with nurse sharks, you can explore ancient Mayan ruins, visit rainforests, hike or go cave tubing. Explore Belize and you’ll experience something truly amazing. Great Dives Ambergris Caye – Just offshore from the quaint village of San Pedro is Hol Chan Marine Reserve, one of the coolest dives in Belize. It’s a strictly enforced marine park situated at a deep cut in Belize’s barrier reef. Abundant marine life, healthy corals and throngs of grouper, snapper, barracuda and jacks will surround you here. At nearby Shark Ray Alley, you’ll leave dive gear behind and snorkel with – you guessed it – nurse sharks and stingrays.


GOPR0043 Ziplining through the Belize jungle..., 8min. No matter how long it took, I wasn`t ready to stop! Carnival Magic`s "Exclusive Crystal Cave Tubing & Zipline" excursion.

Belize Butterflies, 4min. Our trip to the Green Hills Butterfly Farm, Belize.

gopro BELIZE trip 2014, 5.5min. Traveled to Belize mid December 2014 Stayed at Caye Caulker and Hopkins, snorkeling with Caveman Tours Traveled to Belmopan and San Ignacio

Christmas Eve Tradition San Pedro Ambergris Caye Belize 2014, 13min. Our good friends Krista and Eric started this tradition several years ago here in San Pedro. Krista and several of her friends collect toys and candy to hand out to the children here on the island. Each Christmas Eve good friends gather with decorated golf carts and ride through the streets of San Pedro handing out toys, candy and Christmas cheer. Merry Christmas island style!!!

Belize Hummingbirds, 2.5min. Hummingbirds at the Green Hills Butterfly Ranch, Belize.

Glover's Reef & Utila, 7min. So long Vimeo, you've taken copyright too far when it comes to using music. Perhaps you should police music venues and ticket musicians for covering songs. They're generating a revenue stream as opposed to the rest of us.

Blue Hole Belize 2013, 4min. scuba diving the Blue Hole in Belize.

Belize Dive, 4min.

Garifuna- Wanaragua Dance Performance, 66min.