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Discover the Islands of Belize
When visitors first started coming in numbers to this country just south of Mexico on the Caribbean a decade or so ago, they usually made a quick bead to its offshore islands. The largest of them, Ambergris Caye (pronounce it KEY, as in Key West), has a scattering of mostly low-key resorts popular with divers and fishermen and a town (San Pedro) with sand streets and a lively nightlife of dance clubs. The barrier reef that stretches the length of Belize (and continues south into Honduran waters) is the Caribbean’s equivalent of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

Kayaking Glover's Reef

Kayaking Glover's Reef

The Maya Ruins are truly a sight

The Maya Ruins are truly a sight

 

Plan Your Trip

Stay at Cayo Espanto. The private-island resort of offers one new over-water bungalow and five over-land villas, aprivateisland.com. Ramon’s Village is a full-service resort (snorkel and dive tours are included) is located conveniently in the heart of San Pedro, but you’ll forget about the city sitting by its secluded pool or while lounging in its private beachside bungalos. It also helps that the resort has its own dock, with a fleet of dive boats ready to get you wet, ramons.com. Brahma Blue is brand new, it’s located on a remote spit and its upstairs suite may offer the best perch for sun- sets of any room on Ambergris Caye. A complimentary 5-minute boat ride takes you out to Brahma Blue, which offers unique west- facing luxury rooms overlooking numerous island Cayes — including one owned by Leonardo Dicaprio, brahmablue.com. On Ambergris Caye, Matachica is one of the island’s northernmost hotels. Lie in front of a red casita with a hammock strung across its porch. matachica.com

Eat at the Palmilla Restaurant, which is part of the luxurious Victoria House villas. It offers a decadent setting for a meal that won’t be forgotten. For those looking for romance, or who just want to indulge in the best of Ambergris Caye cuisine, go here, victoria-house.com. On the sandy streets of San Pedro, find Elvi’s Kitchen for Maya-style fish grilled in banana leaves.

Relax on Caye Caulker.Visit here for a new dimension of the manana-mindset. This small sleepy island is a favorite hideout for backpackers, or anyone who wants to disappear, or just lounge in a hammock for, well, a few weeks. To be sure, access to world class snorkeling, diving and flyfishing exists. Get to Caye Caulker via water taxi from any nearby Belize hub, or a fly in with Tropic Air. tropicair.com

For more of what Islands Magazine wrote, visit their site at http://www.islands.com/destination/dest?id=111863&placetype=COUNTRY&destName=Belize

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