This Caribbean country allows for three different experiences—jungle, beach, wellness—all in one vacation
Do your kids want plenty of active adventure, hiking or ATV riding in the jungle? Does your husband want to dive or snorkel in the second largest barrier reef in the world? Do you want to enjoy a great spa and maybe partake in some yoga and meditation? Well come to Belize, where you can have three different experiences all in one trip.
There are direct flights from New York on United, American and Delta. Anyone traveling with kids, knows that direct flights are key. Plus, many people don’t realize that Belize is the the only English-speaking country in Central America—so language barriers are never an issue. Add to that the the combination of so many activities and landscapes—Belize has the second largest barrier reef in the world, plus they have impressive Mayan ruins and and wellness retreats—and you’ve got a great family vacation (enough to make everyone happy).
The first stop is San Ignacio where the Macal River and the foothills of the Maya Mountain intercept only a short drive from. You’ll be in the heart of the Belize jungle where naturalist guides will take guests horseback riding, mountain biking and hiking through the dense rainforest taking in the diverse flora and fauna of the region. Be sure to take a canoe trip down the Macal River—to see birds, howler monkeys and other wildlife.
Where to stay: The Lodge at Chaa Creek, a 400-acre eco lodge specializes in adventure with dozens of different activities offered each day. Be sure to go on a bird watching tour—this area has some of the best bird watching in the country—or taking a tubing excursion deep in the jungle. Zipline among the trees and see a view of the jungle from above. Stay at the new Ix Chel Luxury Rainforest villas—they have private plunge pools, al fresco outdoor showers and personal butlers. Think luxury in the rainforest. Ten percent of room rates go toward environment and community projects.
With more than 200 miles of coastline, Belize is world-famous for its beautiful Caribbean landscapes. Travelers can snorkel, scuba diving, fish, windsurf, kayak, and enjoy the beautiful waters of Belize.
Where to stay: The award-winning Victoria House Resort & Spa, located on Ambergris Caye, features spacious villas for larger families, a gourmet restaurant with freshly-caught seafood fare, two beachfront pools and a dive shop where groups can arrange charters for exhilarating adventures such as diving the world renowned Great Blue Hole or snorkeling Shark Ray Alley. The resort also boast the largest spa on Ambergris Caye—taking luxury and wellness to the next level. Be sure to book one of the villas—ranging from two to five bedrooms — and up to 5000 square feet — some have their own private pool (all are located beachfront).
Whether travelers are looking for a challenging yoga session, an inspirational hike, or a relaxing soak, the Placencia area of Belize—located in the southern part of the country—is the place to be.
Where to stay: Naia Resort and Spa can provide exactly what one needs to recharge over a holiday. At the heart of the resort lies Naia Spa, a breathtaking retreat that is spread over a collection of small islands dotting an enchanting freshwater lagoon where the resort’s skilled and experienced therapists work their restorative magic. The spa features a fully-equipped fitness center, plus a yoga and movement studio that overlooks a tranquil lagoon. Leisure bike rides, kayaks and SUP will leave guests centered and rejuvenated.