Best Central America Destinations

Belize Travel Guide

Home to around 405,000 people, Belize is the smallest country in Central America when ranked by population. And only El Salvador has a smaller land mass.

But with shores lapped by the Caribbean Sea, the huge Belize Barrier Reef, dense jungles, hundreds of low-lying islands, and breathtaking Mayan ruins, Belize punches well above its weight.

At Martsam Travel, we have taken the time to carefully curate a range of tours in Belize that showcase everything this incredible country has to offer. In addition to pre-planned trips, we also design custom Belize tours with tailor-made itineraries.

Whether you want a relaxing beach holiday or a Central American adventure, our team goes above and beyond to make your dream vacation a reality.  

For now, though, we present our Belize travel guide. We hope that it’s full of all the inspiration and information you need.

However, if you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Where is Belize?

If you’re unfamiliar with Central American geography, let’s get our bearings first. Belize sits on the east coast of the Central American subcontinent and shares boundaries with Mexico and Guatemala.

The north of Belize is Central America’s northernmost region. This makes the country an ideal starting point for anyone looking to complete a north-to-south journey through all seven Central American countries.

Such an adventure would take you through neighboring Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama.

Our travel guide for Guatemala is another useful resource for anyone looking to travel beyond Belize

What is the Weather Like in Belize?

Like all Central American countries, Belize sits in the Tropic of Capricorn. It’s little surprise, then, that it’s hot and humid here year-round.

Average temperatures only vary by around 39°F (4°C) between the hottest part of the year (May to September) and the coolest (December to March). On a daily level, temperatures differ by around 50°F (10°C) between the day’s peak and night’s low.

Of course, the higher into the uplands you travel, the more the temperature decreases. Factor in a fall of approximately 37.5°F (3°C) for every 1,000ft increase in altitude.

Belize also has dry and wet seasons. The dry season typically runs from February to April with the wet season starting in mid-May and lasting until November. Late November to February is a transitional period between the two and comes with limited rainfall and the coolest temperatures.

It’s also worth noting that the south of the country receives significantly more rain than the north. The north averages around 60 inches/1500mm compared to the south’s 160 inches/4000mm.

Is Belize Safe for Tourists?

Every traveler has their own sense of safety. Influences on this can vary from personal experiences to gender. As such, we don’t want to give a sweeping generalization here.

Belize is a country that is renowned for, and relies on, outstanding tourism. This is reflected in the country’s fourth-place finish in the Top 10 Countries to Visit in 2022 as part of Lonely Planet’s ‘Best in Travel Awards’.

Like any other nation or city that welcomes large numbers of visitors, Belize’s most popular places are safe and welcoming.

The reality is that you only need to take the same precautions you would when traveling outside your own country.

We advise planning your trip comfortably in advance. This gives you time to gather plenty of information about the locations and attractions you want to visit.

You can also use the pre-travel period to research and assess the most trusted and most highly rated tour companies, like Martsam Travel.

What Languages do People Speak in Belize?

English is Belize’s official language. Many Belizeans are multilingual, so it’s common to find speakers of Spanish and a creole patois too. The Mayan people in the country also speak Yucatec, Mopán, and Qʼeqchiʼ (Kekchí).

With Martsam Travel’s English-speaking team guiding your travels in Belize, you should have no worries about communication during your time here.

What are the Requirements for Entering Belize?

Citizens who hold US, Canadian, EU, and UK passports do not need a visa to enter Belize. You can legally stay in the country for 30 days after the date of arrival.

If you want to remain longer than this, you must visit an Immigration Office and secure a Belize Visitor’s Permit Extension.

What Should I Pack for a Trip to Belize?

With such a wide range of activities, day trips, and tours in Belize, we can’t list everything that every visitor will need to bring on a trip here. After all, what works for a jungle and Mayan history adventure won’t apply for a relaxing beach vacation.

Generally speaking, though, it’s worth packing the following items:

  • A quick-dry travel towel
  • Waterproof phone case
  • Cooling towels
  • Broken-in hiking/walking shoes
  • Waterproof jacket and socks
  • Lightweight cotton t-shirts
  • Casual shorts and trousers
  • Swimwear
  • A hat and sunglasses
  • Longsleeve shirts for outdoor adventures
  • Long pants for the same reason!

The above list is only a starting point. Needless to say, you should always travel with the appropriate documents (and copies), personal medication, and spares of essential clothing.

The country’s currency is the Belize dollar. If you’re traveling from the US, you have the added benefit of being able to use US dollars as they are widely accepted everywhere. But please note that you will always receive change in Belize dollars.

Of course, it’s always sensible to exchange some of your native currency for local money in a bank on arrival.

What are the Must-Visit Places in Belize?

From Belize cultural experiences to adventure tours in Belize, whatever your reason for visiting, you’ll find plenty of activities for an unforgettable trip!

Beach and Ocean Lovers

If your perfect vacation involves days spent beside the sea, Belize is a playground to explore! Located in the Caribbean Sea, the Belize Barrier Reef is the world’s second-largest, behind only Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

With warm, translucent water, over 100 types of coral, and more than 500 tropical fish species, Belize’s reef is a paradise for snorkelers and scuba divers.

If you’re a snorkeler, you can marvel at the shifting kaleidoscope of coral, fish, turtles, and whale sharks. Divers can descend even deeper to investigate underwater caves and the world-famous Great Blue Hole.

Is the Great Blue Hole on your bucket list? It’s a key feature on our Explore Belize Tour.

And let’s not forget the wonderful island life on Belize’s sandy Cayes. You can spend your time swimming, fishing, kayaking, windsurfing, paddleboarding, or just lazing in a hammock.

Jungle Adventurers

Given its small stature, Belize has a relatively vast network of inland national parks and wildlife sanctuaries. These include Mayflower Bocawina National Park, Shipstern Nature Reserve, Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, and Río Bravo Conservation Area. 

These protected areas offer a haven for all manner of flora and fauna. Even a brief run-through of the animals you can find here includes:

  • Cutter ants
  • Iguanas
  • Tapirs
  • Spider monkeys
  • Howler monkeys
  • Peccaries
  • Coatimundis
  • Jaguars
  • Some 570 bird species

For an added touch of exhilaration, Belize has numerous excellent locations where you can zipline through jungle canopies! With outstanding hiking trails and opportunities for rappelling down waterfalls, Belize is a genuine adventure, both in and out of the jungle.

History Enthusiasts

Central America was home to one of the world’s most mysterious civilizations: the ancient Maya. Peppered with fascinating archaeological sites dating back to between CE 250 and 1000, Belize has plenty in store for history aficionados.

Just two of the famous names on any archaeological tour of Belize include the jaw-dropping Xunantunich and the astonishing Lamanai. Both of these Mayan wonders feature on our Explore Belize Tour.

The Cayo and Toledo Districts are rich in historical sites, including the iconic massive stone temples with enormous steps leading to the summit. Today, that journey leads to stunning 360-degree views of the surrounding landscape!

With intricate hieroglyphs, excavated tombs, and natural caves where kings made sacrifices and performed rituals, there’s so much to learn and explore about this amazing civilization.

Experience Authentic Belize with Expert-Led Day Trips and Tours!

Martsam Travel is the leader in first-class Central American experiences. With us, you have complete peace of mind. Our Belize tour packages take you to every corner of this beautiful country.

With options for custom tours in Belize too, there’s no need we can’t meet! Please feel free to contact us with any questions about the tours we operate.

For the ultimate in flexibility and freedom, consider a tailor-made itinerary. Our custom tour packages let you design your own experience. The type of hotel, methods of transport, and places to visit — the choice is yours!

Adventure Tour

Explore Belize Tour

This Tour Package is a nine days example itinerary that will take you to discover some of the best archaeological and natural wonders of Belize.
Adventure Tour

Inside Belize Tour

This is a 9 day vacation package that will take you to rainforest and beach destinations, while you will enjoy creative activities.
Adventure Tour

Family Adventure Belize

Belize it is a nine days example itinerary that can be used as it is or customized to meet your expectations, places to visit, travel time and budget.
Adventure Tour

Belize Adventure Tour

This all-season package is for small groups, families and independent travelers and can be easily customized to fulfill your interests.
Cultural Tour

Belize Vacation Tour

This six days Archaeological Adventure tour will take you through significant Maya sites in Belize and the unequaled Tikal in Guatemala.
beach belize
Adventure Tour

Guatemala & Belize Tour

This adventure tour package is ideal for families, independent travelers and small groups looking to experience a mix of quality activities and adventures.

Over 200 5 Star Reviews

5 star reviews

Visiting the Maya ruins in Peten Guatemala is a fabulous travel experience. Lily and the team at Martsam Travel in Guatemala are experts at making your travel plans come true. ln addition to the immense cultural value of the sites, you have chances to see unusual tropical animals. Totally great experience!

Craig

5 star reviews
A travel agency that makes you feel assisted every step of the trip – what a nice experience. Lily was checking every day to make sure things were going as well as possible, and went out of the way to accommodate last minute changes to my trip.

Massi

5 star reviews

I am beyond thankful that we found Martsam as they made our 10 day trip so perfect. We learned so much about Guatemalan and Mayan history. The hotels they booked for us were beautiful, luxurious, and affordable. I HIGHLY recommend using Martsum to plan a trip to Guatemala!!!

Rose

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