Belizean People and Culture

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People of Belize
Belizeans gathering in Burrel Boom

Belizeans are people associated with the country of Belize through citizenship or descent. The current population is approximately 430,000 people from various ethnic groups that harmoniously co-exist together. Due to this, the country is recognized as a melting pot of cultures.

Related: Belizean folklore & Belizean beliefs and superstitions

Below are some of the main cultures that make up the people of Belize.

People of Belize

The people of Belize are diverse, but the primary cultures are the Mestizo, Maya, Garinagu, and Creole. Other smaller but established ethnic groups include the Mennonites, East Indians, and Chinese. Additionally, there is a growing number of people from Central America that are moving to Belize. They should not be mis-characterized as Belizean Mestizos.

Maya woman in Belize


In the peak of the Maya civilization, at least 400,000 Maya inhabited Belize, today they comprise about 11% of Belize’s population. Currently, the Maya live in small villages, often near the many majestic Mayan ruins that dot Belize.

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mestizo man in Belize


Representing almost half of the population of Belize, Mestizos are the most common culture in Belize. They are people of mixed Spanish and Maya descent. Many also have some African heritage. Mestizos should not be mistaken for immigrants in Belize from Central America.

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Garinagu people of Belize


Southern Belize is the cultural hub for the Garinagu of Belize. Garifuna is used to describe their language and Garinagu is used to describe them as a group. This group of people are prominent in Belize and have greatly influenced Belizean music.

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creole woman in Belize


The Creole are descendants of African slaves that were brought to Belize in the 18th and early 19th century. They are the result of slaves — and their offspring — mixing with British settlers. Creoles are urban people and primarily live in Belize City.

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