A Travellerspoint blog


San Ignacio, Belize

Mayan ruins in a cave!

sunny 93 °F

Following the Mayan Route, we visited Xunantunich and the ActunTunichilMuknal (ATM) cave to get a little feel for the Mayans that lived here so long ago. Xunantunich is very accessible from San Ignacio, and has one of the largest castillos.We traveled to the site early one morning by bus and then hand cranked ferry.

We found ourselves to be the only people at the whole site for the first hour of the day, before being swarmed by endless amounts of Belieze’s finest 3rd graders!Climbing the Castillo made for an epic view of the surroundings, including views of Guatemala.

Our visit to the ATM cave included spelunking, wading and swimming through a beautiful cave.

We snuck past the batsgoing 1.5k deeper into the cave to find Mayan remains, including huge pottery vessels and 15 skeletons believed to have been sacrificed in this entryway to their underworld.The cave is most famous for the Crystal Maiden which is a skeleton of a young girl in which the bones have calcified, giving it a glimmering look.

We frequented the local farmers market and had a little culinary tour sampling lots of different foods including fry jacks, papusas, salbutes, panades, and garnaches!All are pretty much the same ingredients (corn with some filling) in lots of different forms :)

Posted by Robin-and-Kevin 14:18 Archived in Belize Comments (1)

Placencia, Belize

Shoes optional!

sunny 93 °F

You don’t have to find a secluded island to live the island life, but you still might have to take a boat! With only an email reservation for a “ferry” with just one departure a week, we were happy to see the boat waiting for us at the Honduras dock… even if it was the smallest ferry we’ve ever seen! Belize had one of the most interesting immigration processes we’ve experienced. We docked at some unknown place about a 10min boat ride away from our destination (think Ellis Island) but weren’t allowed get off the boat. Instead, the immigration officer actually boarded our boat and did a role call from the passenger manifesto. Gringos were last, so we had plenty of time to prepare our passports and sneak a pic.

The ferry was supposed to take 2 hours, but since one of the engines blew up after a half hour, our journey took a little over 4 hours, but it was worth the wait! Placencia sits at the end of a very narrow peninsula so everything is covered in sand except for the road out of town and the world’s narrowest ‘main street’, which is actually more like a sidewalk.

Despite it’s size, this cute little main street had everything we could hope for – food stalls, hotels, tour operators and cinnamon rolls! – all possible to visit barefoot. The locals in Belize speak Kriol – which is like a mixture of severely stunted English, Spanish, and slang. It sounds very Rastafarian and was fun to try to figure out what people were saying. We took full advantage of the peninsula by watching both the sunset and the sunrise.

One morning, we were chatting with a nice lady who introduced us to her neighbor, Francis, who offered to take us on a snorkeling/spear fishing trip. We decided to take him up on the promise of a fresh fish BBQ on one of nearby Cayes. Snorkeling suddenly took on a whole new meaning and instead of saying “look at that cute fish!” we kept asking “can we eat that one?” Heh heh. Luckily, Francis has been doing this for years and we ended up with quite the tasty BBQ.

Posted by Robin-and-Kevin 17:05 Archived in Belize Comments (0)

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