Favorite Travel Destinations: Belize Part 1

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Belize; with dense jungles, ancient Mayan ruins, waterfalls, underground caves, gorgeous beaches, and the 2nd largest barrier reef in the world it truly has something for everyone to enjoy.

We arrived in Belize City and met our driver who was taking us to the Blancaneaux Lodge which is a 2.5 hour drive from the airport and is located in the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve. This would be our home for three nights. 

The last hour of our journey was on dirt roads as we passed orange groves, Amish horse and buggy (I was surprised to learn that Belize has a fairly big Amish community), and Caribbean pines.  

We arrived at the Blancaneaux Lodge tired and in desperate need of a shower. We were greeted with warm smiles and offered some Jaguar punch. Yes, please! 

They explained the logistics of the resort and showed us to our cabana. This would be my idea of glamping.  Definition: glamorous camping, satisfying your craving for the outdoors and your penchant for a good meal, nice glass of wine, and a comfortable bed. 

After we settled in and had some major hammock time we were desperate for dinner which started at 6pm. 

We were the first and only couple to arrive promptly at the start of dinner service (which would be a reoccurring theme throughout our stay). 

The Blancaneaux Lodge has only 2 dining options either Italian or Guatemalan.  Limited dining options are the one drawback of being so secluded. Since the Italian restaurant did not need reservations this is where we wound up. We devoured our pizza (yes our first meal in Belize was pizza, tragic I know) and retired back to our cabana to get some well needed sleep.

During the night I found out that mosquitoes love me (can I really blame them)!?  I don’t know how many times I had to wake up in the middle of the night and spray myself with mosquito repellent which clearly was not working. All the while my husband was in a peaceful deep sleep dreaming about dancing candy canes. Not really but he was sleeping like a baby which is rare for him. It must have been the mountain air and the fact that the mosquitoes were not showing any love and affection towards him.  

We woke up pretty late the next morning but did make it in time for breakfast which was complimentary with our stay. We filled up on fresh fruit and delicious homemade pastries and were off to hike Big Rock Falls.

Sneakers-check, bathing suit-check, hat-check, camera-check, water bottle-check, mosquito repellent-check. 

The hike takes about 30-40 minutes each way from the Blancaneaux Lodge depending on how often you stop for photo ops, which was a lot for me, and the fact that I was not in the best shape and needed to take breaks to catch my breath.

The hike itself is not that strenuous but actually making it down to the falls is another story.  It is steep and rocky but is worth the effort.  

We were hot and sweaty by the time we made it down so we stripped down to our bathing suits and jumped in. It was freezing. I had to force myself in because I was not about to miss an opportunity to swim underneath a waterfall (bucket list item). So in we went and it was amazing! 

The feeling of the rushing water hitting your back and the sheer beauty was unforgettable. I was so grateful I was able to spend that moment with my best friend and husband. We could not pry ourselves away and spent hours just swimming and soaking in the sun. 

We decided to go a different (and yes easier) route back to the lodge. 

We relaxed in our room’s hammock and cheered to an amazing first full day in Belize!

To be continued...