Looking for an off-the-beaten-path travel destination where you can experience top-notch adventures? Look no further: Belize should be the country entered when buying flight tickets. The small Central American nation offers some of the biggest adventures you can experience in your life!
Take a Jungle Survival Course
The main part of Belize’s territory is covered by dense jungle, only to be split up by the scenic Hummingbird Highway. One way or another, when exploring Belize, you will end up in this hostile environment. Just to be well prepared, it can be useful to take a jungle survival course. Maya Guide Adventures offers 3-4 day courses or if you are up for it, even longer. During these courses you will learn how to build a shelter, how to make fire, what you can and cannot eat and how to set traps to catch birds and mammals.
We learnt so much during our three day jungle survival course. Check out our experiences.
Maya Mountain Adventure Challenge
When you want adventure you can try one of the adventure races in Belize. Registered teams will be competing eachother in a 500 km race by mountainbiking, canoeing, pack rafting, trekking & orienteering, caving and rappeling. It shouldn’t be a surprise that you need to deliver a medical form as well. Only for experienced adventurers, since you will be spending quite some time in the jungle.
Snorkel the Belize Barrier Reef
When searching for the best scubadiving location, people always think of the Great Barrief Reef in Australia. However, Belize’s Barrief Reef might even be a better option to explore the amazing underwater world. This is the second largest barrier reef in the world. When spending time in Caye Caulker or San Pedro, the snorkel tour in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve is one we can recommend as you will see sharks, sting rays, barracudas and some amazing coral!
Dive the Great Blue Hole
The Great Blue Hole is one of the world’s best diving locations. This submarine sinkhole is located some 70km off the coast of Belize and takes a quite a long trip to get there (3 hours). If you’re not up for the bumpy boat ride, you can always choose to make a scenic flight over it. We even made a video of it.
How to book a scenic flight over the Great Blue Hole?
The many rivers and streams in Belize are perfect for kayaking, but if you think paddling is a little bit too dull, Belizeans have another option: rivertubing. Rivertubing is the perfect alternative if you want to float down the many waters in a special way. You will be conquering the gentle currents on an inner tube! Let’s face it, there ain’t much more adventure than floating in a tube on a river in the middle of the jungle. Maya Walk Tours offers tours starting from San Ignacio to the popular Caves Branch River for 85USD.
If you have plans of visiting Cockscomb Nature Reserve during your trip, you can rivertube the river for only 15 USD/ pp.
La Ruta Maya Belize River Challenge
La Ruta Maya Belize River Challenge is a gruelling multi-day canoe race travelling a perilous river route across the country of Belize. The route runs West to East along the Macal. This annual competition is entered by 80 canoes paddling 250 km in 4 days! It starts off at San Ignacio, close to the Guatemalan border, only to end up in Belize City. Be ready for the adventure of your life!
Explore ancient Maya Ruins
The dense jungle of Belize hides some ancient ruines waiting to be explored. While new ruins are still discovered, there are a few well-known Maya sites that are worth visiting. Close to San Ignacio, you can make a half-day trip to the nearby Xunantunich ruins or the site of Cahal Pech. A more adventurous journey is by joining a tour to – or rent a car and drive to – Caracol, the largest ancient Maya archaeological sites ever excavated in Belize, located in the Cayo district.
Jaguar spotting in Cockscomb Basin
One of the best wildlife experiences you can have during your visit to Belize is spotting a jaguar. Your chances are at best when visiting Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize’s most famous jaguar sanctuary. However these type of cats are nocturnal so to improve your odds of actually encountering a jaguar, you have to hike early in the morning when they are active. There are numerous trails to be hikes. We spent three nights at Cockscomb Basin and considered a highlight during our Belize trip.
Here is a guide on what to do when you’re visiting Cockscomb Basin
Rappel the Black Hole
When you hear about rappeling the Black Hole, they are talking about Actun Loch Tunich, the ‘Mother of all Caves’. This sinkhole sits about 100m above the basin below, and some 60 meters above the rain forest canopy. With the aid of a system of rappelling ropes, you can descend all the way down the hole. An unforgettable experience that will give you an adrenaline boost for sure.
Even when going below ground level you will find adventures in the Central American country. Actun Tunichil Muknal or the ATM cave close to San Ignacio, is a well-known site amongst visitors, since this caving experience will make you wade through hip-deep water and show you glimpses of skeletal remains as an extra thrill. However, during our visit to Belize, we opted for the Crystal Cave in Blue Hole NP. A less visited but more thrilling experience of caving. At moments you will have to squeeze, scramble and crawl yourself through the cave. If you’re lucky, your guide will take you to the ‘Wonderland’ deep inside the cave.
Read about our experiences in Crystal Cave
Canoe in Barton Creek Cave
Barton Creek Cave is one of the many caves that were used by the Mayas for ancient rituals such as agricultural rituals, ferility rites and human sacrifice. It is one of the longest wet caves making it ideal to explore by canoe.
What adventure appeals to you the most?