Cave Tubing in Belize

Cave Tubing at Nohoch Che'en Caves Branch
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Cave tubing is hands down one of the top things to do in Belize and should be on your travel bucket list. Why? Because it’s an exhilarating adventure that is unique to Belize!

Related: Top caves to visit in Belize and The best eco-adventures in Belize

Cave tubing is a relaxing and exciting experience where you drift down the Caves Branch River while learning about the historical value of the cave system to the ancient Maya. You get the best of both adventure and education whilst on this tour!

Cave Tubing at Nohoch Che’en Caves Branch

Belize Cave Tubing
The river crossing signals that you are about to start cave tubing

Cave tubing in Belize is done at Nohoch Che’en Caves Branch, also commonly known as Caves Branch or Jaguar Paw. To get there, you must drive about 30 minutes south of Belmopan City until you see a cutoff called Unnamed Road.

Once you arrive, you will visit the information center to register and get your river tubes, life jackets, helmets, and headlamps. After getting geared up, participants set off for a twenty-minute hike to the entrance of the first cave. The trail is easy and has beautiful greenery: you’ll see many trees and plants that are unique to Belize and the area.

After hiking for some time, you will arrive at a section of the Caves Branch River that must be crossed. The river typically only goes up to people’s ankles, which makes it easy to cross. This crossing signals that you are near the entrance of the cave and are about to start cave tubing.

Once you arrive, the first thing you’ll want to do is take a dip in the river, the water is so refreshing after the hike! The river is so immaculate – you can look right through to the bottom where the rocks and fish are!

River Tubing at Caves Branch
The cave entrance for cave tubing

Once there, you’ll witness that the entrance of the cave is adorned with rocks and formations that are simply beautiful! But before entering the cave, your guide will brief you on the caves, safety protocol, and what you should expect to see.

As you float further into the cave, darkness will surround you. But fortunately, your headlamps will help guide you. Throughout the cave, as you float along you will see various stalactites, stalagmites, broken pieces of pottery, and other ancient Maya artifacts.

Once you’re deep inside the cave, your guide will prompt you to turn off your headlamps for about two minutes. You will be left floating in complete darkness and the feeling is both exhilarating and spooky.

And before you know it, you’ll see a glimpse of sunlight at the end of the cave, signaling that the tour is about to end. Once you exit the cave, your guide will ask you to pick up your tubes and head back to the parking lot, where appetizing chips, salsa, and rum punch will be waiting.

Where is Nohoch Che’en?

The Nohoch Che’en Caves Branch Archaeological Reserve is located on Unnamed Road off the Hummingbird Highway. It is 30 minutes from Belmopan City and one hour from San Ignacio, Cayo.

How to get to Nohoch Che’en?

Getting to Nohoch Che’en is relatively easy. If you have a personal vehicle or a rental, you can easily drive to the site. You can also travel there by public bus – just be on the lookout for the sign to get off the bus. However, if you have booked this tour with a licensed tour operator, your guide will be picking you up and dropping you off.

When is the best time to go cave tubing?

The best time to go cave tubing in Belize is during the dry season, between the months of December and April, when there are fewer chances of storms. Why? A lot of rain — like if it rains non-stop for a week — can cause the river levels to rise, which isn’t the best for cave tubing. However, keep in mind that Belize is located in the tropics, which means that you still can go cave tubing during the wet season since it usually doesn’t rain non-stop for a week. It is usually warm and sunny throughout the year in Belize.

What’s the cost?

A guided cave tubing tour through the cave of Nohoch Che’en costs approximately $85 USD per person. My team and I travelled with Belize Caving Expeditions, who are suppliers on The cost included the entrance fees to the cave, our personal guide, refreshments such as water, lunch and snacks, equipment and transportation – a great deal for the price!

What to bring and wear?

To go cave tubing, our tour guide recommended light and comfortable clothing along with a pair of water shoes. For the guys, a T-shirt and swimming trunks would suffice. As for the women, you can also wear a t-shirt or tank top along with shorts. Make sure to bring a towel and an extra change of clothing.

Gear that you can bring along could be waterproof cameras, bug spray, and a waterproof bag to safeguard your mobile phones, cameras, or valuable jewelry. You can also take a bottle of water in case you need a little extra hydration after the hike.

You don’t need your own river tube, helmet, headlamp or life jacket for the trip. These are provided at the information center near the parking area of Nohoch Che’en.

If you are interested in going cave tubing at Nohoch Che’en, then we definitely recommend Belize Caving Expeditions. Our guide, Edward was great and we had a blast throughout the trip!

Cave Tubing in Belize



Reader Interactions


  1. Kelly Constantine says

    How far is it from ambergris Kaye? And how would I arrange transportation.?

    • Lorenzo Gonzalez says

      Hi Kelly: I suggest you stay in Cayo for this tour. The town of San Ignacio is a great spot to consider staying. Tours from there leave every day for cave tubing.

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