If you don't want to fly out to the cayes, catch a cab from the airport and head for one of the water taxis in Belize City. Fares are much lower than airfares, and it's a fairly pleasant 45 minute boat ride to Caye Caulker, and another half hour or so (plus a few minutes loading and unloading time at Caye Caulker) to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. The three water taxis all leave from different docks, but the taxi drivers in Belize City know the schedules and will get you to the right terminal so you can catch the next boat. Note that prices are in Belize currency.
Read unbiased opinions about hotels and vacations at TripAdvisor.
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Generally Useful Places
This is the most active Belize bulletin board I’ve found. I found it useful when we were planning vacations to Belize, and find it equally useful now as we’re figuring out how to live here. Plus, we’ve met a lot of nice people through this forum.
Another good Belize bulletin board. Not as busy as the one above, but also not as susceptible to spam and flame wars.
Another very active bulletin board. This is the place to go for up to the minute hurricane reports during hurricane season.
Lan Sluder’s Belize website. He keeps it up to date and accurate with information about just about everything Belize.
Created and maintained by a former American expat who has since moved back to the US. Doesn’t pull any punches, and gives a good feel for both the good and the bad of visiting or living in Belize.
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News and Blogs
Another big national news station. Uses more exclamation marks than Channel 5, but the news is essentially the same.
Belize weather from the Belize National Meteorological Service.
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Things to See and Do
This website chronicles the dig at Caracol from 1994 to the present. Great photos as well as very interesting reading.
Website for the Elijio Panti National Park. Moonracer Farm is located just outside the Park, and hikes or horseback rides to waterfalls and caves within the Park can be arranged either from here, or from San Antonio. This park is a underutilized natural resource!
Green Hills Butterfly Ranch, just a mile from Moonracer Farm.
Website for the Belize Zoo, the best little zoo in the world. Great source for information about wildlife in Belize, from what birds, animals, and snakes look like, to how they sound.
Birds Without Borders/Aves Sin Fronteras is an organization based in Belize and associated with the Zoological Society of Milwaukee. They provide landowners in Belize with study results and guides explaining how to make your property more hospitable to birds.
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Places to Shop
Cayo’s answer to Marie Sharp, The Hot Shoppe sells a selection of hot sauces and a variety of other treats, as well as pepper-related souvenirs. Their hottest hot sauce isn’t anywhere close to Marie Sharp’s, but their Manganero mango/habanera sauce is to-die-for on chicken and fish and their Sweet Pepper Sauce is an interesting change on almost anything.
Orange Gifts, formerly Caesar’s, is located on the Western Highway between Belmopan and San Ignacio. Definitely a bit pricey, and there’s nothing here that you can’t get more cheaply elsewhere, but everything you could ever imagine wanting from Belize is found here under one roof, and if you have your heart set on a particular souvenir or gift, this is the place to find it. Plus, they’re very nice people and very customer service oriented. I recently broke a necklace which Tom purchased from Caesar’s years ago, and we stopped by to see where they recommended getting it fixed. They took it, called the artist who had made it, and had him fix it, no charge.
This website is the virtual Spanish Lookout, with a list of all businesses in the town, and links to all businesses with web pages.
Located in Spanish Lookout, Universal Hardware has appliances, pumps, hardware, tractors, generators, and just about anything you’d need to build. They also fix things, and are very understanding about not taking forever on your generator when they know it’s your only power source!
Midwest Steel & Agro Supply is a hardware and farm store with the best selection of plumbing supplies in the area, if not the country.
Visit Harry if you need a satellite for either internet access or television, as well as for your other computer needs. We stopped to talk to Harry about a satellite after lunch one day, and by the time we got home from shopping, the satellite was installed. Great customer service!
Located in Spanish Lookout, Western Dairies sells almost all the dairy products we buy here. A trip to Spanish Lookout is never complete without a stop for ice cream at Western Dairies.
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Moving to Belize
This is the main page for the Government of Belize. If you need to know anything about or do anything with the Belize Government, this is the first place to look. If it’s not directly on this site, check the Resource Centre/Links to Your Government page, and you’ll probably find whatever you’re seeking.
Trying to figure out how much it will cost to bring a specific item into Belize? Check here. The Tariff & Duty Info page should explain everything you need to know, and if you can’t find it on the website, contact names are provided. This site doesn’t tell you, but everyone we’ve ever talked to advises the use of a customs broker at the border. We used Steve Kuylen, who doesn’t have a website that I can find, but we would highly recommend him. He had us email and fax information about what we were bringing in to Belize ahead of time (especially our vehicle), and when we finally got to the border, he had a representative meet us before we even crossed into Belize. We figure he saved us thousands of dollars for a very small fee, and made the process completely painless.
The first link is the main website for the Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA), and the second is the page where you can get entry requirements and applications for bringing pets into Belize.
We bought our Isuzu D-Max diesel pickup at Bravo Motors, and highly recommend both their sales and service departments. In addition to providing us with a vehicle that exactly meets our needs and helping us to maintain that vehicle, they've been very agreeable about cooperative marketing opportunities such as posting links to each other's websites.