Things to do in Belize

things to do in belize

Headed to Belize and want to make a list of must-do’s while you’re there? I got you.

On my adventure to Belize, I stayed on the island of Ambergris Caye! This island is aproximately 25 miles long, with an estimated population of 24,000 people (not counting tourists). I flew back and forth to Belize City, so I have the scoop on a variety of things to do! This includes San Pedro and surrounding areas as well.

#1. Truck Stop

This place is unbelizeable!

I was lucky enough to stay at my friend’s house that’s located right next store to all the fun.

Truck Stop is a shipping container food truck park with a bar in the center that has some of the best local staff and food I’ve ever experienced. It also features a swimming pool with a swim-up bar, an 18-foot movie screen, has live music, games (like Family Feud, which was highly entertaining) and all sorts of other awesomeness.

Truck Stop Belize
Truck Stop Belize

My favorite thing was ordering ice cream from Cool Cone and eating it at the bar….Because I’m 80 years old and don’t party like all you other wild cats.

In my defense, a double shot can also be a double scoop, so it’s kinda the same thing

Truck Stop Belize

#2 Secret Beach

Going to Belize and seeing the beaches. I know, this seems obvious. But there’s a reason why people flock to places like Belize for the beach. The lagoon side features the stunning Caribbean Ocean. The turquoise water cannot be beat!

Secret Beach located on Ambergris Caye is a must-do. You can either rent jet skis, a boat, or a golf cart to get there from San Pedro or surrounding areas. The most popular choice is the golf cart route. It takes about 45 minutes on a golf cart to get there on an extremely bumpy road, but it’s totally worth it!

The following photos are from the amazing Bamboo Fence Swing Bar.

Swings, picnic tables floating in the ocean, hammocks, AMAZING food and drinks – does it really get any better?

Secret Beach Belize
Secret Beach Belize

This is the moment where you feel like you really are living your best life.

Secret Beach Belize
secret beach belize

And when I said they have great food, I mean it. These were probably the best tacos I’ve ever had in my life. And that says a lot.

secret beach belize
secret beach belize

I’d also like to add that all around Ambergris Caye you will find amazing beaches. You really can’t go wrong. Here’s some shots from beaches located from the Tres Cocos area to the border of San Pedro.

Amergris Caye Beach
Ambergris Caye Beaches

The awesome thing about this island is that every pier and beach is open to the public, whether it’s located near a hostel or beach-front hotel. It’s illegal to have private beaches and piers. Which means you’re free to explore to your heart’s content.

Ambergris Caye Beaches
Beaches Ambergris Caye Belize

#3. Take a small plane to anywhere

Yup, you read that right. There are 2 charter airlines – Maya Air and Tropic Air that both fly to and from Belize City to Caye Caulker, Amergris Cay, and other islands in the area. All major airlines fly into Belize International Airport and from there, you take a small plane (each charter plane fits 12 people max) to whatever island you want.

Maya air belize
maya air belize

Now let me be the first to say, coming from someone that struggles with overall anxiety and also fear of small places, I was absolutely freaking terrified to do this flight for the first time. To add to my stress, they also asked me if I wanted to be the co-pilot. I said no, but everyone else yelled at me to do it. 

I have no regrets because the views from that seat are insane! I ended up doing this flight a total of 4 times in 10 days, so the anxiety wore off pretty quickly.

maya air belize
view of belize via maya air

#4. Belize Zoo

Speaking of taking a small plane to anywhere, we hopped the charter to get us from Ambergris Caye to Belize City. We rented a taxi for an all-day animal experience of a lifetime.

The Belize Zoo exhibits over 200 animals, representing over 45 native species. The zoo keeps animals which were orphaned, rescued, born at the zoo, rehabilitated animals, or sent to The Belize Zoo as donations from other zoological institutions.

Keep in mind that this isn’t your average, run-of-the-mill zoo. I got the vibe of a super home-grown zoo. Hand-made signs, etc. It’s really neat to see and you simply self-guide yourself through all the adorable and amazing animals.

The Belize Zoo
The Belize Zoo

By far my favorite was holding the snake! I wish I could’ve held all the animals, if I’m being real. 

The belize zoo
The Belize Zoo

#5. Community Baboon Sanctuary

You can now experience the world of Howler Monkeys in their natural habitat! It’s literally a family passed-down community located in the heart of the jungle with families of monkeys!

It’s just a short 10 minute walk into the jungle before the “guide” (family member) starts making the howling sound to call the monkeys. It’s such an amazing experience that I honestly can’t fully put into words. 

baboon sanctuary belize
baboon sanctuary belize

YA’LL. You literally get to hand-feed monkeys. Are you kidding me. They are sooo cute! They grab on to your hands. It’s the most amazing thing I’ve ever done. Keep in mind that this is NOT a zoo. They run completely free. The people that live in the community have taken years and years taking care of them to actually earn their trust.

#6. The Iguana Eco Corner

This place is a true hidden gem. There are zero signs showing what it is and hardly ANY info online about it.

Mr. Calvin started The Iguana Eco Corner with the sole intention of saving iguanas from getting eaten by locals. Yup, you read that right. (Apparently they taste like chicken)

He started with 3 iguanas and has grown to over 200!

Iguana Sanctuary Belize
Iguana Sanctuary Belize

It’s free (we donated of course), still a work in progress, and it’s located right on his property. He doesn’t care about the money. His goal is to have a place for people to go and experience the iguanas while becoming educated!

It’s a bit tricky to find. But don’t fret. I got you.

📍 The sanctuary is located by the lagoon side, north of the gas station, in San Pedro Town on Ambergris Caye, Belize.

#7. Bar Hop

Let’s talk about Ambergris Caye for a moment. The entire island is full of beach-front bars. Bar hopping is a great way to get to know locals, tourists from all over the world, and see the beautiful beach views! 

I ate Lion Fish at Pirate Treasure Restaurant and Bar. That was quite the experience. 

I loved Rum Dog! Like many other local bars, they have tubes you can float in right outside where they bring you food and drinks while you float your life away. 

Stellas Sunset Wine Bar and Restaurant is also amazing! It’s actually owned by my friend’s friend (his Belize neighbor!) I had the best bacon grilled cheese  and papaya chips and dip!

Rum Dog Belize
belize

For a full list of awesome bars on Ambergris Caye, click here.

#8. Volunteer at Hope Haven

Hope Haven is the only children’s shelter on the island, hosts the Colleen’s Kitchen Food Bank to over 150 women and children, and hosts empowerment programs for youth and young women.

Twice a week they serve less-fortunate families in the community by providing them with a hot meal. We went twice to help serve food and spend time with the children. They are so incredibly sweet. 

hope haven belize

The highlight of my volunteer experience was this adorable little girl putting both her hands on my face and saying “You are beautiful.” I literally had to choke back tears. They are so sweet and loving.

The second night that we volunteered, they had soccer shoes donated, and the kids were so excited! We got to help them try on shoes until they found a pair they could take home. 

hope haven belize
hope haven belize

When you see beautiful “Instagram-worthy” places on social media, you are NOT seeing what the people on these islands are really going through. They live in poverty, have no hot water, and are not able to feed their families. We took the golf cart to go pick the children up for dinner, and these are their living conditions.

poverty belize
poverty belize

Please, if you are in the area visiting, take at least one night and volunteer. For volunteer info, click here.

#9. Walk to the dogs at the local shelter

It’s really neat that the local shelters allow you to go walk the dogs. Giving them a chance to get out and play is so fun!

They are NOT a kill shelter, and take very good care of the animals. Just walking into get leashes we saw dogs getting baths! The volunteers take the dogs out regularly for walks, even if there aren’t volunteers.

SAGA Humane Society Belize
SAGA Humane Society Belize

#10. Go snorkeling AND see the Mayan Ruins

Ok, so in light of all the Coronavirus madness currently unfolding, I had to leave my trip 7 days early. Making my trip 10 days instead of 17.

I had plans to go snorkeling and see the Mayan Ruins. I didn’t get to do this, unfortunately. I’m adding it to the list because it would’ve been there if I had done it!

To see the top 10 Mayan Ruins in Belize, click here.

We were also supposed to go snorkeling with some locals on the north island of Ambergris Caye. The three most-popular areas for snorkeling from boats near Ambergris Caye are Hol Chan Marine Reserve, Shark-Sting Ray Alley and Mexico Rocks. 

I’m super bummed I missed out on these, but guess what? My friend owns a house there so I can go back when the travel bans are lifted. I’m just so grateful I got to experience 10 wonderful days in paradise!

Travel Tips

Looking for more beach vacation recommendations around the world? Click here!

Have you been to Belize? What was your favorite thing you did? Tell me in the comments!

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Leave a Comment

  • Vera Dooley
    2020-03-20

    Truly amazing photos! Living the island life in a world gone crazy right now would be wonderful! Thank you for sharing this post! How awesome you were able to do this humanitarian trip! Loved the post and the photos!

    Reply
    • Jessi Bang
      2020-03-20 Vera Dooley

      Thanks so much for the kind words and for taking the time to read!

      Reply
  • Amy
    2020-03-21

    Awesome blog post and insights to Belize!! Thank you for sharing the good AND the bad. It was funny watching you feed the monkey and iguanas too ??.

    Reply
    • Jessi Bang
      2020-03-23 Amy

      Thanks Amy!! I loved feeding them! With the monkeys, it was definitely a bucket-list checked!

      Reply
  • Lisa
    2020-03-23

    Thanks for sharing your wonderful adventure and all of your photos. I appreciated the one you included about living conditions. What a contrast from the touristy sites. I hope I get the chance to visit Belize one day.

    Reply
    • Jessi Bang
      2020-03-23 Lisa

      Thanks for taking the time to read, Lisa! It’s so important to highlight what most people DON’T see. I hope you make it there! It’s such an amazing place!

      Reply
  • Ashli Ferguson
    2020-03-23

    So when I tell my husband I want to go to Belize can I tell him it’s your fault LOL this looks AMAZING and that secret beach is to DIE FOR!!!

    Reply
    • Jessi Bang
      2020-03-23 Ashli Ferguson

      Omg, you totally need to add it to the list! It’s awesome!

      Reply
  • Ashleigh
    2020-03-24

    This sounds like an amazing trip! Belize has been on my bucket list for years. Saving this post for the future!

    Reply
    • Jessi Bang
      2020-03-24 Ashleigh

      You totally need to go!! Check out some of the places I mentioned when you go!

      Reply
  • Mike
    2020-03-24

    We had a really good time at San Pedro. Scuba diving was great. Looks so much different now though. The pizza at Pirates was really good also. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    • Jessi Bang
      2020-03-24 Mike

      San Pedro is awesome! I’m so glad you got to go! I plan to return hopefully shortly!

      Reply
  • Paige
    2020-03-24

    Great post! I’m going to Belize for my honeymoon (assuming our travel plans don’t get canceled) and this is making me so excited for it!

    Reply
    • Jessi Bang
      2020-03-24 Paige

      Yay! What part are you going to? You’re going to love it!!

      Reply
  • Sandra Joseph
    2020-03-24

    Belize is beautiful. I was able to see a little of it through a cruise a few years back. I was also fortunate to have seen the Mayan ruins there. Sorry your trip was cut short but that just means you get a do-over!

    Reply
    • Jessi Bang
      2020-03-24 Sandra Joseph

      Thank you! The ruins sound and look so amazing!

      Reply
  • Sheriden Stokes
    2020-04-01

    Belize looks amazing!! Always been on my list but don’t know much about it, and sadly haven’t got around to it yet. Thanks for sharing, will be for sure using this list when I eventually get to go! X

    Reply
    • Jessi Bang
      2020-04-03 Sheriden Stokes

      Thanks so much! It’s definitely one you want to add to the list!

      Reply
  • Anna
    2020-04-22

    Such a beautiful place! Thanks for sharing this!

    x0x0,
    Anna
    https://www.annalovelife.com/

    Reply
    • Jessi Bang
      2020-04-23 Anna

      Thanks for reading, Anna!

      Reply