After flying direct from Chicago into Belize City, we took a quick flight over to Ambergris Caye, which is the country’s largest island. The island-city of San Pedro has plenty of options for accommodations. Rent a few bikes or a golf cart to get around during your stay. It’s what the locals do.
We spent a day with Belize Diving Adventures snorkeling through Hol Chan Marine Reserve, and then swimming through Shark Ray Alley. The local crew took us out on a large catamaran. We saw a rare group of spotted eagle rays, schools of tropical fish and even got to swim with nurse sharks.
After getting a proper sunburn the first day out on the water, we decided we had to go out again. The second time we went with Under Da Sea Adventures (don’t worry, no sunburns that time). Our guides had been spearfishing in the same waters since they were kids. They taught us how to hunt for fish, lobster, and even conch—you know, the large snails that live inside those beautiful, spiral shells. We made conch ceviche on the boat, then docked at a smaller, nearby island to cook up lunch with what we had caught.
Out of the water, we enjoyed the laid-back vibe of the island, the tropical flora, and the kindness of the locals. We kayaked along the beach, ate (too many) banana pancakes, and even enjoyed fireworks from a dock on New Year’s Eve.
Looking for more beach-vacation ideas? Check out our article on Yelapa, Mexico.
All photos by Tobey Schmidt Photography