Most people fly into Belize at the Philip Goldson International Airport in Ladyville, just a few miles north of Belize City. From there, it's relatively simple to get to San Ignacio, the country's second-largest urban area.
Flying from Belize City to the airport outside of San Ignacio (called Maya Flats) only takes about half an hour, but the price of tickets is pretty steep. Furthermore, the planes are tiny "puddle jumpers" that only hold a dozen passengers. For flight information and schedules, contact Tropic Air or Maya Island Air.
If you're driving your own car, simply follow the signs to take the George Price Highway (still widely known as the Western Highway) which goes straight to San Ignacio. The George Price Highway is a modern, two-lane roadway that has several gas stations and roadside restaurants along the way.
Once you get near San Ignacio, you'll have to cross a wooden bridge with just one lane. From Belize City, be sure to turn right and head downhill to cross the bridge into San Ignacio. If you miss the turn, don't worry! People in Belize are very friendly and will be more than happy to give you directions. When you're leaving San Ignacio to head back east, you'll need to take a different bridge, the Hawksworth Bridge, the only suspension bridge in the country. Assuming you don't make any wrong turns or stop to take photos along the way, it takes approximately two hours to drive from the Belize City airport to San Ignacio.
Taxis can be hired from the airport or anywhere else in Belize City, but the cost can be prohibitively expensive. All legal taxis have a green license plate and the name of their co-op (company) posted on the window. Be sure to negotiate the fare before you begin your journey!
Belize has a nationwide network of public buses, affectionately known as "chicken buses" by the locals. The cost will be less than $10, but you'll have to deal with frequent stops, crowding, and no air conditioning. The trip will take about two and a half hours. The good news, however, is that you can catch a direct bus to San Ignacio from several different locations in Belize City.
If you're looking for the fastest, most comfortable way to get to San Ignacio, try Untame Belize Shuttles. Untame Belize offers prompt, professional door-to-door shuttle service to any destination in the country, including hotels, lodges, resorts, and Airbnb residences in San Ignacio.
All international flights into Belize land at the Philip Goldson Airport in Ladyville, located approximately nine miles north of Belize City. From there, a nationwide network of highways leads to all points on the mainland, making it easy to any destination.
The easiest, most comfortable, and often most affordable way to get around Belize is by shuttle. Untame Belize offers courteous, prompt, and professional door-to-door shuttle service to all destinations in Belize, including Corozal, Orange Walk, Belmopan, San Ignacio, Dangriga, Hopkins, Placencia, and Punta Gorda. Untame Belize also offers shuttle service to hotels, lodges, resorts, and AirBNBs as well as popular transportation hubs like the Belize City water docks and the bus terminal that serves Cancun, Mexico.
If you're heading to Placencia, travel time from Belize City is around three and a half hours. Travel time from Placencia to San Ignacio is around three hours. Attractions like Davis Falls, the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, Monkey River Town, Dangriga, Hopkins, and Punta Gorda can be reached from Placencia in an hour or less.
All of Untame Belize's shuttles are spacious, modern vehicles equipped with the latest safety features and amenities, including icy cold air-conditioning and wireless internet. Shuttle vans are large vehicles that can easily accommodate groups and their luggage. Child car seats can also be provided free upon request.
Every shuttle driver working for Untame Belize is an experienced professional who has passed rigorous safety and background checks. Upon request, shuttle service can include stopovers at local restaurants, cafes, scenic overlooks, or attractions along the way such as the Belize Zoo. Shuttle service can also be booked for transportation to remote destinations such as wilderness sanctuaries, national parks, traditional villages, and ancient Maya sites.
Untame Belize offers very competitive prices for its shuttle services, and prices based on distance, meaning that larger groups can save substantially. Shuttles can also be booked from Belize to nearby resort destinations in Mexico such as Cancun and Playa del Carmen. Untame shuttles must be booked at least 30 days in advance and a 50% deposit is required.
If you're interested in visiting southern Belize, be sure to book your adventure tours with Untame Belize as well, including exciting off-road ATV expeditions, zip lining in the jungle, visiting a waterfall, and horseback riding. And be sure to book your lodgings at Davis Falls Inn, a locally-owned guesthouse offering clean, comfortable rooms and delicious, home-cooked meals.
Pronounced "keys," all of the islands in Belize are known as cayes. Harvest Caye is a privately-owned island located just a few miles offshore from Placencia in southern Belize.
All of Norwegian Cruise Line's routes to Belize include a port of call at Harvest Caye, where more than 400 NCL employees are on hand to ensure that passengers enjoy a wonderful time in the country. The island has its own lagoon (perfect for swimming), restaurant facilities, and a beautiful beach.
If you're coming to Belize on an NCL cruise ship, why not skip the crowds and enjoy a tour of the mainland? There is regular ferry service from Harvest Caye to Placencia on the coast, one of the most beautiful areas in the country. Placencia is both the gateway to the UNESCO World Heritage Belize Barrier Reef, a mecca for snorkeling and scuba diving, and to popular destinations on the mainland like animal refuges, ancient Maya cities, and national parks.
Untame Belize, based in southern Belize, is a locally-owned and operated company offering a full range of tourism services. If you'd like to explore Belize, Untame Belize can meet you right at the Placencia docks and arrange for guided tours to some of the most exciting activities in Belize.
Because Belize is such a small country, cruise ship passengers docking at Harvest Caye can choose from popular activities like climbing ancient Maya pyramids, hiking through the Cockscomb Basin Wilderness Sanctuary (home to more than 200 jaguars), and boat tours of the well-named Monkey River. Other popular choices include zip lining through the jungle, cave tubing (floating down underground rivers), and horseback riding.
And, if you want to really get out and see the wildest, most untouched parts of the jungle, Untame Belize offers ATV tours. Using rugged, all-terrain vehicles, visitors can blast through jungle river crossings, zoom across enormous citrus orchards, and visit inaccessible sites deep in the rainforest such as the mysterious Lyman Prison. Now abandoned and considered by some to be haunted, Lyman Prison was once home to Belize's most hardened criminals.
Untame Belize also operates cultural visits to local villages where visitors can learn more about the traditional music, dances, and foods of the Garifuna and Maya people. Untame Belize also has guided tours to local chocolate factories and colorful, open-air markets where you can find authentic, homemade souvenirs.
If you're visiting Harvest Caye on your next cruise, be sure to book all of your activities with Untame Belize.
Placencia, Belize, is more than just beautiful beaches. It's the perfect starting point for excursions that will thrill any adventurous traveler. Here are the top five adventure trips you can take from Placencia.
The world's first jaguar sanctuary is one of the largest and best-known nature preserves in Belize. The sanctuary, which is managed by the Belize Audubon Society, encompasses hundreds of acres of wetlands, savannah, pine forest, watersheds and rainforest. The sanctuary is home to a huge variety of wildlife and birds. Enjoy spectacular scenery as you hike or kayak through the well-marked trails of this preserve.
The pristine Monkey River is a coastal waterway that runs from Cockscomb Basin to the Caribbean. A ride down this wild, untouched river lets you experience Belize's true nature. Glide through the jungle as you spot crocodiles, hummingbirds, scarlet macaws, toucans, deer, ocelots, tapirs and howler monkeys.
If you picture the ideal tropical island of your dreams, you're probably thinking about the unspoiled, white sand cayes of Belize. The cayes are uninhabited islands that dot the coastline off the Placencia Peninsula. They offer unparalleled snorkeling and scuba diving. Swim among amazing numbers of sea mammals, friendly sharks, and rare fish.
Spend a day of adventure in lush, green Bocawina Park. Start your adventure with the longest zip-line in Belize. The thrills continue with your choice of waterfalls. Beginning rappelers can take a 10-minute hike to the Bocawina Waterfall and take a thrilling 100-foot drop through the rushing water. Experienced rappelers can take a 90-minute jungle hike to reach the Antelope Falls, where you'll enjoy a 250-foot drop through the water.
Did you know that Maya chocolate is world-famous? You can sample some as part of this tour. Visit an authentic Maya village where you'll meet a Maya chocolate maker, tour a cacao farm and try your hand at roasting cacao beans. Naturally, you'll have a chance to buy some chocolate to take home with you.
Belize is the ideal vacation destination in 2020, especially for adventure travelers. This tiny, beautiful country is jam-packed with incredible adventures at every turn.
It's hard to narrow down the top things to do in Belize, but here are some of the things that should top any adventure traveler's must-do Belize itinerary.
The Actun Tunichil Muktal (ATM) Cave is considered one of the most important sacred caves in the world. Used by the ancient Maya for burials, religious ceremonies and human sacrifices, this massive cave is located in the Tapir Mountain Nature Reserve in western Belize. Visiting the cave is a test of skill and endurance that requires a long jungle hike, fording several streams and hiking the cave's twisted chambers.
The great Maya civilization built many of its most important city-states in Belize. The ruins at Cahal Pech and Xunantunich are prime examples of their impressive engineering and architectural knowledge. Visiting these ruins takes you back in time.
The second-largest barrier reef in the world, the Belize Barrier Reef is a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its stunning beauty and amazing biodiversity. The barrier reef offers world-class snorkeling and scuba diving. Experienced divers who want a true challenge can attempt the Blue Hole of Belize.
This is an adventure excursion that could only exist in Belize. It involves a river ride on a professional inflated tube that takes you through a network of ancient Maya caves. A cave tubing trip is scenic, heart-pumping and purely Belize.
Cockscomb Basin is the world's first jaguar sanctuary. This stunning preserve protects thousands of acres of pristine rainforest, scenic waterfalls, exotic birds and a huge variety of wildlife. Managed by the Belize Audubon Society, it's the perfect spot for hiking, camping or birding.
One of Belize's major rivers, this coastal waterway begins in the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary and travels through southern Belize to the Caribbean. It is a wild, pristine river with spectacular scenery. If you want a rugged boat trip, Monkey River is your destination.
If you're planning to visit Belize, make the most of your adventures by booking your tours and transportation with Untame Belize. As Belize's premier adventure tour company, we can create an unforgettable, action-packed vacation for you.
The Toledo District of Belize is sometimes called "the forgotten land," but this wild, pristine region of southern Belize offers something special to adventurous travelers.
The southern part of Belize is home to seven major national parks, marine reserves and other areas dedicated to protecting the wildlife, native vegetation, fish and marine mammals of Belize. It's filled with incredible scenery including rainforests, mountains, caves, waterfalls, and riverbanks.
Be prepared to encounter nature in its purest state. If you need luxurious accommodations and high-class tourist amenities, this is not the trip for you. If you're ready to see nature in its pure form and meet local people who live a simple, rural lifestyle, you will enjoy this tour.
What will you see in the Toledo District? Here are some highlights of the region.
Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary: The world's first jaguar sanctuary, this spectacularly scenic preserve includes over 200 square miles of protected areas. Hike, canoe or walk through protected rainforest habitat where you'll see wildlife, exotic birds, stunning waterfalls, amazing views of the Maya Mountains and more.
Monkey River: The clear blue waters of this river will take you on one of Belize's most scenic tours. You'll pass through a preferred habitat of Belize's famous howler monkeys, who will cheer you on as you glide by.
Nim Li Punit and Lubantuum Maya Ruins: Take a jungle trek to the ruins, hike the pyramids and learn about the Maya. The Maya built magnificent city-states in Belize, and visiting these ruins is an impressive experience.
Maya Chocolate Farm: If you love chocolate, it's time to learn more about Maya chocolate, which has become internationally recognized for its quality. On this tour, you'll visit a cacao plantation where some of Belize's finest Maya chocolate is produced.
Bocawina National Park: A birder's paradise, this rainforest preserve is also home to the longest jungle zip-line in Belize. There's nothing like zip-lining through five miles of the rainforest while exotic birds fly around you.
Offshore Cayes: Laughing Bird Caye and the Silk Cayes are uninhabited, undeveloped tropical islands on the edge of the Belize Barrier Reef. They provide some of the best snorkeling and scuba diving in the world.
Once you arrive in Belize, you need a way to get around the country to ensure you see all the sights. What's the best way to get from point A to point B? There are various options depending on where you're staying, but most experienced travelers to Belize will tell you that a private shuttle service from Untame Belize is the best way to go. Let's look at the various options.
Driving yourself might seem convenient, but it has some drawbacks. First, it can be dangerous. The roads here can be rough. Many are unpaved, and most are dotted with huge potholes, deep ruts and speed bumps.
Second, it's expensive. Car rental rates have gone up in Belize as they've gone up everywhere. Gas is very expensive here.
Belize has buses and a water taxi. You'll have to travel according to their schedule, and you'll also have to make sure you know where to pick them up. Water taxis can take you from Chetumal or Belize City to Caye Caulker and back.
There are also small, local airlines that can get you around the country quickly. These so-called puddle jumpers can whisk you from the airport to Caye Caulker, Dangriga or San Pedro. If you're staying on the cayes, you can rent a golf cart.
If you're hopping around from one end of town to another, it's easy to flag down a taxi. You can also find them at the airport, bus station and water taxi terminals. You should only get into a taxi that has a green license plate.
Keep in mind that sharing taxis is common in Belize, and your driver may pick up an additional passenger on the way.
Private shuttle services provided by a professional tour guide are the best, safest and most convenient way to get around Belize. At Untame Belize, our spacious, comfortable and air-conditioned vehicles can provide:
We're not just a great choice for transportation. We also provide some of the most exciting tours and excursions in Belize. We can arrange everything so all you have to do is get ready to enjoy an unforgettable Belize vacation.
Get ready to celebrate Belize's amazing cultural diversity by joining us for Garifuna Settlement Day in November.
Garifuna Settlement Day is a week-long celebration of the Garifuna people's arrival in Belize. This is one of Belize's largest and most important celebrations. It pays tribute to a proud, traditional culture that has contributed enormously to Belize's past and present.
Take part in the colorful parades and watch traditional Jankunu dancers moving to the beat of rhythmic, evocative Garifuna music. Sample Garifuna dishes like serre, a fish stew cooked in coconut milk, hudut or fried plantains, and other Belizean delicacies.
Spend time in the Garifuna communities of Hopkins, Dangriga and Seine Bight. While you're here, visit the Gulisi Garifuna Museum in Dangriga to learn all about the Garifuna's fascinating history.
The Garifuna people descended from a group of Africans who intermingled with indigenous people of the Caribbean after a sinking slave ship in 1653. Over the next century and a half, the Garifuna fought fiercely for their independence. They were forced to flee several times until they found permanent homes along the coastlines of Honduras, Guatemala and Belize.
They came ashore in November 1809 and have been a welcome, integral part of Belize's culture ever since.
The Garifuna have developed a distinct Afro-Caribbean style of music, dance, food and language. The Garifuna musical group "The Garifuna Collective" has won dozens of music awards and has been ranked the top world music group in the world.
The Garifuna people have forged a lasting legacy from their history of slavery and dispossession. They built a thriving community where they've preserved their language, customs and culture for centuries. UNESCO has listed the Garifuna as a Representative of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
If you want to experience all the excitement of Garifuna Settlement Day, plan your trip with the help of Belize's most exciting tour company. Contact Untame Belize for the best shuttle and transportation options in Belize.
One of the top things to do in Belize is scuba diving, and Placencia is one of the best places in Belize to do this.
The majority of divers go right to the Atolls and Cayes in Belize, but the more knowledgeable ones also leave room for a visit to Placencia. In this section of southern Belize, you'll get to see a more isolated part of the Belize Barrier Reef. The inner half of this spot is a nice place to work on getting certified if you're an experienced diver. If you're a beginning diver, then it's also a good place to sharpen your skills.
The visibility here is amazing, plus there's no current and a multitude of colorful reefs. If you're an advanced diver, then the outer reef is the place for you. Here, there's plenty of opportunity for deep dives and exploring walls with steep drops. Most of the diving in Placencia takes place from small dive boats. The reefs are roughly half an hour from the village.
Another great attribute of diving in Placencia is the lack of extra fees. The rest of Belize is not like this. Diving to see whale sharks is highly regulated, and boats may be limited to 1.5 hours. Sometimes the only interaction allowed is via snorkeling. If you use a DIN regulator, then you should bring an adapter. Most divers visit the Placencia waters from April to June, which is whale shark season. However, the entire dry season offers perfect diving conditions and weather. The wet season between August and October is considered a low season for both diving and tourism. In terms of diving, it's really not a bad time to go as the only issue is somewhat compromised visibility from the rain. However, you'll find fewer crowds at this time as well.
The three main diving highlights in Placencia are Laughing Bird Caye, the Southern Coast and the whale sharks at Gladden Spit. Laughing Bird Caye can be found on the inner section of the southern barrier reef. It's an ideal place for beginning divers and features schools of rays. The Southern Coast tends to have fewer divers than the north part and new dive spots are being found each year. Whale sharks are arguably the biggest attraction in Placencia waters. You're almost guaranteed to see one if you dive between April and June.
Book your diving tour with UntameBelize.com today to see the beautiful waters of Placencia!
Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary is the world's first and only jaguar preserve. This spectacular preserve includes over 125,000 acres of pristine rainforest that jaguars, pumas, ocelots, kinkajous, coatimundis and almost 300 species of birds call home.
If you think the sanctuary is amazing in the daytime, imagine how spectacular it is at night. That's when you have a better chance of spotting the shy cats. It's also when you can experience the jungle's unique nightlife.
A Magical Experience
At Untame Belize, we find that our guests love this tour. They describe it as a breathtaking, magical experience. They can't believe the huge variety of animals they get to see in their natural habitat.
Many of the animals only come out at night. These include most of the big cats, foxes, opossums and the mountain tapir, which is Belize's national animal.
Travel Back In Time
As you enter this preserve in the shadow of the Maya Mountains, you'll see and hear the rainforest the same way the ancient Maya did. You'll get a sense of what they experienced before there were cars or electric lights. The deep silence and darkness of a true, untouched rainforest is something few people experience.
What Will You See?
You never know what you'll see in the preserve. We can't guarantee that you'll spot a jaguar or any other creature. These animals are shy, and spotting one is a rare opportunity.
We can guarantee that you'll be deeply inspired. We haven't yet had a guest who was disappointed by this magical, mysterious tour.
Is This Tour Right for You?
This is an ideal tour for any animal lover who wants to experience nature in as true, wild and untouched a setting as possible. It takes three to four hours to arrive at the sanctuary and hike through it.
What Is the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary?
Cockscomb Basin was established in 1990 as a jaguar preserve. It also protects the upper watersheds of important river systems. The sanctuary is managed by the Belize Audubon Society. It is about 20 miles from Dangriga on the Southern Highway.
Untame Belize Is the Natural Choice for This Tour
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