Know Before You Go

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Do you need help planning your trip to Belize?

Well, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve worked in tourism for more than 15 years and have shared expert travel advice here for over 10 years. I use my local knowledge to make this website: Belize Adventure, a resource-rich Belize blog filled with the best travel tips.

There are so many things you need to know before you travel to Belize, from entry guidelines to health and safety concerns, to what to bring/pack or buy on vacation. The information listed below serves as a 10-step travel guide for Belize that offers information on when to visit, where to stay, the best places to go, and top-rated tourist attractions.

1. Best time to visit Belize and top places to go

San Pedro beachfront near Estels Dine by the Sea

Belize is small but it has a lot to offer. Here are the top beach & jungle destinations in Belize

Should you visit Belize during the dry season or wet season?

Belize festivals and events by month

2. Things to do in Belize: Top tourist attractions & activities

El Castillo is the tallest temple at Xunantunich

The 10 best things to do in Belize

TOP 35 Belize Experiences

Belize itinerary for one-week or two weeks

3. Establish your travel budget: low, mid-range, or luxury

Turtle Inn beach hotel by Francis Ford Coppola

Do you want to visit cool spots but want to travel around Belize as cheaply as possible?

Or are you splurging and want to experience the best of Belize? Below you can find my curated lists of top Belize hotels and resorts:

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4. Book hotels by top destinations in Belize

Jungle resort in belize

I’ve spent the past 10 years meticulously curating lists on top places to stay in Belize:

Stay at hand-picked resorts & lodges that partner with me:
Belize Luxury Villas at Chaa Creek Jungle Resort

1. The Lodge at Chaa Creek

Chaa Creek is the oldest jungle resort in Belize and has won many international awards for its eco-friendly status. They are eco-tourism pioneers and were “green” before it was trendy. This eco lodge is perfect for nature lovers since it’s located in a 400-acre private nature reserve 1/2 hour away from San Ignacio, Cayo, which is the hub for eco-adventures in Western Belize.

Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort in Hopkins Belize

2. Hamanasi Adventure & Dive Resort

Located in Hopkins, Stann Creek, the award-winning Hamanasi Resort is the perfect base for eco-friendly travelers seeking an adventure outpost with rustic-chic elegance. This resort specializes in scuba diving (they have a PADI 5-star dive facility) and its prime location in Belize’s southeastern coast makes jungle day trips to Maya temples and caves easy. However, the main highlight of Hopkins is the unique Garifuna culture of Belize.

pelican reef resort in san pedro ambergris caye, belize

3. Pelican Reef Villas Resort

Pelican Reef has several modern and well-equipped beachfront condos in southern Ambergris Caye. It is located 15 minutes away from Downtown San Pedro and offers the perfect setting for families and groups of friends. Guests enjoy having the option of cooking their own meals or eating at the onsite restaurant & bar. After a day of fun activities in San Pedro, you can lounge by their pool or soak up the sun on the beach. They also have a dock that can be used for snorkeling or fishing.

Aerial view of Glover's Reef Basecamp

4. Island Expeditions

Island Expeditions has been offering Belize adventure packages for small groups since 1987. It all started when three Canadian friends explored remote Cayes in Belize and had such an incredible experience that they decided to share it with others. Their signature experience allows visitors to stay on Glover’s Reef Atoll, which is 36 miles off the coast of Dangriga at the edge of the southern Belize Barrier Reef.

5. What to eat and tipping guide

Hudut Garifuna Food

Things you MUST eat in Belize

A simple guide to Belize’s tipping culture

6. Basic facts about Belize and how to get there & around

The hand-cranked ferry used to get to Xunantunich

Get to know basic facts about Belize

People can get to Belize by air, land, and sea

Here’s a guide to getting around in Belize

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7. Travel documents and requirements for entry to Belize

entry requirements for belize

Most people don’t need visas to enter Belize. All that is needed is a passport that is valid for at least 30 days.

There is no entry fee for Belize, however, there is an exit fee a.k.a. departure tax.

8. Health and safety concerns in Belize

Belize is open for travel during COVID-19

Here are travel safety warnings and information

Use this guide to Belize’s healthcare system

As of July 2022, Belize lifted all of its COVID-19 public health measures for entry

9. Belize Packing list

Onsite birding at Hamanasi Resort in Hopkins, Southern Belize

Tips on what to pack for Belize, including what not to bring

10. How to save money on your trip to Belize

Belizean Money. BZ Dollars from $2 to $100

A few ways how you can save money on a Belize vacation

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What are the best places to visit in Belize?

The top 10 places to visit in Belize are Ambergris CayeCaye CaulkerSan IgnacioPlacenciaHopkins, Belize City, Cayo, Offshore Atolls, Tobacco Caye, and Corozal.

What are the top things to do in Belize?

1. Explore Belize’s Barrier Reef by diving the Great Blue Hole and Half Moon Caye Wall or snorkeling at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve and South Water Caye Marine Reserve
2. Learn about Belize’s ancient Maya by visiting top Maya sites such as Xunantunich, Caracol or Lamanai, and top Maya caves such as Actun Tunichil Muknal and Caves Branch for cave tubing.
3. Visit Belize’s many islands (known as Cayes). Popular Cayes include Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker and less-visited Cayes include Tobacco Caye and Glover’s Reef.
4. Visit National Parks and Protected Areas such as Mountain Pine Ridge in Cayo and the Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary in Crooked Tree.
5. Go wildlife spotting by visiting the Belize Zoo or the Baboon Sanctuary. Alternatively, go hiking at the Cockscomb Basin or Monkey River.

Can you drink the water in Belize?

Tap water in Belize is not safe to drink. However, most hotels, resorts and some vacation rentals provide “purified” water to guests so bring a reusable water bottle. If drinking water isn’t included in your stay, it can be bought at supermarkets in 500 ml, 1 litre, 1.5 litres, 1 gallon, & 5 gallons bottles.

How is the COVID-19 pandemic affecting travel to Belize?

Belize was closed to international travel from March 24 to October 1, 2020, due to COVID. Since then, Belize has reopened with minimum tourism protocols.