Belize Island Adventure Blog

If you love culture and not crowds then Dangriga is the place you have to visit. Located at the end of the Hummingbird Highway, Dangriga is the capital of Belize’s Stann Creek District and is home to the Garifuna, a cultural and ethnic group who are descendants of shipwrecked slaves and native Caribs.

The town is a suitable base to explore the following Belize tours:

Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary

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Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary was established in 1986 as the first jaguar reserve in the world. Covering approximately 150 square miles of tropical forest, the park lies at the foot of Victoria Peak, the highest peak of Belize’s Maya Mountains.

Hike through the jungle, splash by the waterfall, or float down the river under a sky of birdsong and green canopy.

Zip Line and Water Fall

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Soar with the birds through the pristine canopy in the Mayflower Bocawina National Forest. The complete system features 3 zip line courses over 2000 feet with the longest being over 2,300 feet. You will soar with the birds in this magnificent rainforest.

After zipping for a mile and a half on the longest zip line in Belize, fill your belly with a delicious lunch provided by Mama Noot’s Restaurant. You will then venture on a guided hike to Bocawina Falls where you will have the opportunity to rappel one hundred feet down the falls!

Dangriga Culture Town Tour

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Get to know the Garifuna journey and culture, view paintings, murals and thread art portraying all aspects of Belizean culture at a colonial era gallery. Practice some basic drum rhythms and learn about Pen ́s musical creation, Punta Rock. You will have an introduction to the four major Garifuna dances and rhythms: Jankunú, Punta, Hungu Hungu, Chumba. Lunch is a traditional Garifuna delicacy of Hudut, cooked on a fire hearth. Relax under shady coconut trees and listen to the sound of nature.

Following the visit at the Gallery you will visit the quaint workshop of legendary drum-maker, Austin Rodriguez, who manually carves Garifuna drums from mahogany, cedar and mayflower wood.

Marie Sharp’s Factory Tour

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Marie Sharp’s Pepper is one of the best hot sauces on the planet and on this tour; you will enjoy the different samples of products that Marie produces.

Marie’s Sharps is a household name in Belize and is found on hundreds of dining tables around the country.

A recent guest posted this review on Trip Advisor about the Marie Sharp Factory tour:

We enjoyed sampling all their sauces and jams. They are very good. The tour of the factory/plant was quite interesting. Our guide was very pleasant. The small gift shop had all their products at great prices and you could create your own gift boxes.

If you visit, the Bonefish Hotel is the premier hotel in Dangriga and can arrange the above tours for you. The hotel offers modern comforts for business and leisure travel.

From Dangriga, you can also head to South Water Caye, a treasured secluded paradise where you can enjoy a private island experience at Blue Marlin Beach Resort.

Contact us today for more information!

South Water Caye is a 15 acre gem in southern Belize that is a haven for scuba diving and snorkeling. The Belize Barrier Reef is only a short swim from the shore and the beach at the southern end of the island is one of Belize’s sandy beauties according to Fodor’s Travel.

We hope we can lure you to South Water Caye with these 7 beautiful photos:

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South Water Caye is about 14 miles off the coast of Dangriga and Hopkins in Southern Belize.

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South Water Caye Marine Reserve is home to sea grass beds, patch reefs, sand bores, mangrove habitat and over a dozen major cayes and many smaller islets.

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The Marine Reserve at South Water Caye is zoned to protect fishing nurseries and unique habitats; however it provides extensive multi-use areas for snorkeling, fishing, diving and educational activities.

See also: South Water Caye Lodging

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Three times as big as Tobacco but with half as many resorts, the 15-acre South Water Caye has excellent sandy beaches and an interesting combination of palm and pine trees.

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South Water Caye is your perfect tropical island getaway!

See also: Belize Dive Packages

south water caye belize

South Water Caye is a treasure for sea and underwater enthusiasts as spectacular scuba diving, snorkel and salt-water fishing is literally at your doorsteps.

See also: Belize Fishing Vacations

Blue Marlin Resort, Belize.

Blue Marlin Beach Resort is the only full-service resort on this intimate coral island.

 

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Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, established in 1990 is world renowned for being the first jaguar reserve. This “one of a kind” reserve was established as a result of jaguar studies conducted in the area by Alan Rabinowitz. Besides being the home to Belize’s largest cat, the Sanctuary protects the headwaters of two major river systems and supports an abundance of hardwood vegetation and a diverse faunal assemblage.

See also: Belize Sea Tours

Over 128,000 acres of lush jungle are ringed by the spectacular Cockscomb Mountains. The wonders and diversity are accessible to both the casual visitor and the serious naturalist through a series of nature trails. These trails vary in degrees of difficulty ranging from an easy hour-long stroll along the river to a four (4) day challenge of conquering Victoria Peak . The Victoria Peak trail is only accessible during the dry season and requires a permit and a tour guide (experienced guides can be hired from the local communities buffering the sanctuary).

The trail system within the sanctuary provides breathtaking views across the Basin and waterfalls abound. If the hiking is too much, relax with a swim or try tire tubing down the river.

Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary is home to all five (5) of Belize’s cats: Jaguar, Puma, Margay, Jaguarundi, and Ocelot. It is estimated that over 80 resident Jaguars are in the area. Belize’s national animal, the endangered Baird’s Tapir also inhabits the Basin and over 290 different species of birds have been recorded.

The jaguar is the third largest cat in the world after the Tiger and Lion, and is the only member of the large cat genus to live in the Americas.  An adult male may weigh up to 200 lbs and measure 6 ½ feet from nose to tail. The CITES Red List (International List of Endangered Species) declares the jaguar as in need of international protection.

See also: Maya Ruins & Jungle Package

Jaguars are often found in dense forests and swamps with good cover and easy access to water.  The best time to spot one is at dusk or dawn.  When the ground is damp, look out for the Jaguar tracks on any of the trails.

Some groups of Maya, known as the Jaguar people, worshipped the jaguar or “Baalum” believing their kings would reincarnate into these cats and so killing a jaguar was a serious crime, punishable by death.

Park Attractions

With over 20 miles of maintained trails, you are offered many opportunities for hiking and wildlife and bird watching over a variety of terrain.

Two of the trials at CBWS are specifically designed educational trails with accompanying information packs and pamphlets.

For those hiking on the Tiger Fern trail and the trail to Ben’s Bluff, bathing in the cooling waterfalls is a must.

More fun can be had in the water with tube floating and swimming in the South Stann Creek.  Visitors with their own equipment can take advantage of the exciting canoeing and kayaking possibilities.

As might expected in such a wild and remote setting, wildlife abounds- Tayra, Neotropical River Otter, Kinkajou, Baird’s Tapir, all five species of wild cat, and numerous snakes and reptiles.  Over 290 species of birds have been recorded here, from the beautiful Scarlet Macaw and the majestic King Vulture to many tiny hummingbirds.

The Sanctuary also has an educational Visitor Center with interactive displays, wildlife specimens, and a spacious conference room ideal for school and other large groups.

There are three designated camping areas in the Sanctuary, the first next to the Sanctuary headquarters and the others are on the trails, for the more adventurous.  Alternatively, we have a wide range of accommodations – from the communal dormitory to the totally independent White House- all set in the picturesque jungle.

Getting There

Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary is located six (6) miles off the Southern highway, approximately 20 miles from Dangriga (the nearest town). The access road to the Sanctuary is located in the village of Maya Center where the Maya Center Women’s Group is responsible for the sale of entrance tickets. The entrance fee is US$5.00 and the tickets can be purchased at the Maya Center Women’s Group craft shop located at the head of the access road (immediately off the southern highway).

By private vehicle:

The journey takes approximately 2 ½ hours from Belize City – take the Western highway out of Belize City, turn left into the Hummingbird Highway (follow sign to Belmopan and drive past Belmopan), then turn right onto the Southern Highway (follow sign to Punta Gorda). Drive approximately thirty-minutes down the Southern Highway to the village of Maya Center; turn right into the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary access road (signposted on the highway). Drive six miles on unpaved road to the visitor center.

By public transportation:

The Southern transport bus line traveling from Belize City to Punta Gorda will stop at Maya Center if requested (approximately 3 ½ hours). From Maya Center, Cockscomb Basin is a six (6) mile hike, or a US$15.00 taxi journey.

By air:

You can fly from Belize City to Dangriga via Maya Island Air or Tropic Air. The flight takes approximately 20 minutes. From Dangriga either take a taxi to Cockscomb or take a bus to Punta Gorda and ask to stop at Maya Center. From Maya Center , Cockscomb Basin is a six (6) mile hike or a US$15.00 taxi journey.

Source: http://belizeaudubon.org/parks/cbws.htm

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Situated directly atop the Belize Barrier Reef, Blue Marlin Beach Resort just launched a potpourri of amazing Belize summer specials that will definitely lure you to visit South Water Caye which was voted best beach island by the prestigious Islands Magazine this year.

The Belize vacation specials are comprised of the following:

Belize Special #1: Last Minute Deals

Code: BMR-0714

Travel Dates: July 10 – 12 inclusive and July 18 – 20 inclusive

* Nightly Rates starting at $165 US per couple

Belize Special #2 : Island Break in Belize!

Code: BMR-sum14

Travel Dates: July 1 – November 15, 2014

Belize Nightly Rate Special #3:

* Nightly Rates starting at $185 US per couple

Discount on Belize Vacation Packages

Full Board Package Special:

* 15% discount on 5 nights or more bookings

* 25% discount on 3 or 4 nights bookings

Applies to:

Relaxation Package

Snorkel Package

Honeymoon/Romance Package

Mayan Ruin & Jungle Package

Discover Culture Package

Some package restrictions apply.  Please call us at 1-800-798-1558 or write us at reservations@bluemarlinbeachresort.com

 

 

GiftshopMacawWe want all of our guests at Blue Marlin to be safe and happy during their stay here with us in our tropical paradise. Don’t worry, if you forget anything we offer a variety of products and gifts at our beautiful island MACAW GIFT SHOP.

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