Once you have dived the rainbow-colored water world around Belize's spectacular coral reef, traced the ancient footsteps of Maya priests to the top of great pyramids, and swum in crystal-clear pools in the rainforest, it is unlikely you will be able to resist returning for a second helping.
Belize City is the hub, the whole nation under one roof, distilled down into this bustling, ramshackle port town by the Caribbean Sea. North of the City, riverside Creole communities left slumbering since the end of the logging industry in the 1960s are waking up to help unlock Belize's environmental treasure chest. Situated in vast wetland and pristine rainforest, you can see more wildlife in the northern districts in one day than in most other parts of the world in a year.
In the forested northwest, Maya cities hidden for centuries by the jungle are being uncovered, their mysteries being unraveled by teams of archeologists from around the world. West-central Belize, around Mountain Pine Ridge, has become the country's main inland eco-tourism center. In the south, Placencia is one of the fastest-developing of all the tourist destinations. Finally, and the highlight for most visitors, are the cayes, a necklace of islands strung the length of the coral reef. Unforgettable islands, the cayes range from upbeat tourist spots to stranded desert isles offering the best diving, snorkeling and fishing.
The hidden charms of Belize's largest and inimitably ramshackle city are mainly in its non-stop street life: chaotic but laid-back, and unmistakably Caribbean. Read more about Belize City.
The north of Belize is the most agriculturally developed region and is home to the country's most successful, privately-run conservation projects, resulting in a magical mix of environmental and archeological treasures. Read more about the Northern Districts.
Lightly populated and replete with interest for travelers, this region contains three diverse districts: Cayo, which dominates the center-west of the country, and Stann Creek and Toledo, which cover the coastal strip south from Belize City to Belize's southern border with Guatemala. Read more about the South.
Belize has the world's best aquarium, encompassing hundreds of square miles of the Caribbean Sea around the coral reef which skirts her coastline. Read more about the Cayes.
Read more about Belize in Insight Guides: Guatemala, Belize and The Yucat?n
Insight Guide Guatemala, Belize and the Yucatán is a comprehensive, full-colour travel guide to this fascinating region and the legacy of the Maya peoples who once inhabited it. The countries and...Read full description