Best Attractions in Belize
Local Recommendations from our My Guide Belize team
Located 30 miles (48 km) east of Belize City, there is a large group of mangroves and tropical atolls, where there is nothing more than a handful of private resorts and a small population of resident fishermen. The waters surrounding the Turneffe Islands are home to the largest coral reef atoll in all of Belize and were set aside as a protected marine reserve in 2012.
Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary is also known as “Jaguar Preserve” or Jaguar Reserve and is located in the Mayan mountains area, Cockscom Basin covers about 100,000 acres of tropical forest and rises to about 300 to 3,675 at the summit of Victoria Peak. Most of its protected acres are east of the South Highway between Dangriga and the return to Placencia. The entrance to the sanctuary is the village of Maya Center which is located at mile 15 on the south road at Stann Creek.
Coral Glover, the southernmost of 3 coral atolls in Belize, requires a little more dedication within reach: a flight from Belize City to Dangriga, followed by a one-hour boat trip on the high seas. But once there, this ancient refuge for pirates and world heritage is unmatched in beauty.
A protected area and UNESCO World Heritage Site, Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve and National Park is a wildlife park and habitat that spans a diverse collection of habitats, allowing visitors to learn how varied the landscape of Belize truly is.
Established in 1988, the Rio Bravo Conservation and Management Area has accumulated enough land over the years to become the largest terrestrial conservation area in the country that amounts to four percent of all of Belize. On top of this, Rio Bravo is one of the most open conservation areas, and tourists can even stay on property for days or weeks at a time to pitch in and help with conservation efforts.
This park has a lot to offer. Adjacent to a parking area, steps lead to the pool that gives the park name (not to be confused with the other blue hole on lighthouse reef. The stairway leads down through the forest, and birds can often already be seen resting on over-hanging vines, especially emerald green jacamars and blue-crowned motmots.
The Golden Stream Corridor Preserve is a 33,384-acre nature preserve. The region makes up one of the last stretches of rare lowland tropical broadleaf forest which serves as a valuable conservation corridor linking the extensive protected areas in the Maya Mountains to the north (Maya Mountain Forest Reserve, Bladen Nature Reserve and Chiquibul National Park) with the Port Honduras Marine Reserve.
Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave is also known as ATM cave and is located in the heart of the Tapir Mountain nature reserve. This 6,700-acre park is managed by the Audubon Society of Belize and is 45 minutes away by car from San Ignacio in Cayo District and within walking distance of Pook’s Hill Lodge. This is one of the most impressive caves in the Mayan world.
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