January 22, 2015

You Better Belize It: Ambergris Caye – Day 1

My first time in Belize, I never really knew what to expect. I know I was just so excited to escape this damn East Coast winter weather. Getting to Belize from New York City will take under 4 hours by plane.

Getting to Ambergris Caye: It is easy to take a taxi from the airport to the Belize Express Water Taxi Terminal in Belize City. When I arrived, I simply asked someone who works at the airport where I can find taxis (they’re right outside when you get out of the arrivals area). It will only take 20 minutes to get to the terminal, and $25 USD per taxi (not per person). Everybody accepts USD ($1 USD = $2 BZD), but expect to get your change in Belizean dollars.

The Belize Express Water Taxi Terminal is small with a couple of stores that sell souvenirs, snacks and drinks. Buying tickets from the terminal will cost $35 USD (roundtrip). They also sell tickets on their website, but you have to pay an additional fee (God knows what for, but I guess you can guarantee yourself a seat). Ferries to Caye Caulker also leave from this terminal. San Pedro Taxi Terminal

Getting from Belize City to the town of San Pedro in Ambergris Caye takes about 1 hour and 25 minutes by ferry. Depending on where you are staying at Ambergris Caye, you might have to hail a taxi to get to your hotel. I stayed at Corona del Mar Hotel, which is only a 15 minute walk from the Belize Express Water Taxi Terminal in San Pedro. There is also a Supermarket that is only a 10 minute walk from the hotel, which is really convenient for buying drinks and snacks to take when exploring. I knew where I was going because I used Google Maps before leaving the US and saved screenshots so I can later on use it as my map. It is also possible to rent a golf cart ahead of time, since golf carts are the main mode of transportation on the island. Renting them costs $70 a day.

Trust me, in 90 degree weather, it will take you more than 9 minutes to walk from Point A to Point B

Trust me, in 90 degree weather, it will take you more than 9 minutes to walk from Point A to Point B

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View from the room at Corona Del Mar Hotel

Click here to learn about Corona del Mar’s current room prices per night

 

One thing to know about Ambergris Caye is that it is not a beach destination. Even though it is surrounded by waters, it lacks the sandy shores most people would be expecting from it. Instead, Ambergris Caye is dotted with numerous docks extending from dry land into the water- some belonging to resorts and dive centers, and some just there for the sake of being there. Most of the docks I’ve seen are deserted and empty, which makes them a good hang out place. Here, you can go tanning, picnic, or do whatever you want. You can also jump in the water from the docks if you want to. I didn’t on my first day, cause the water was full of sea grass and I just wanted to relax after traveling for hours. I spent the afternoon enjoying the sunshine, watching the sunset, making friends with the locals (because it’s the best way to learn the secrets of an unfamiliar place!) and hopping from one empty dock to another. IMG_8071IMG_8037 IMG_8133 IMG_8134IMG_8153IMG_8079IMG_8182

“I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.”

-Susan Sontag

 

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