Monday, September 10, 2012

Best Of Belize

I am going to back track just a little bit. Before Meghan and Joe's visit we needed to officially check into Belize. It is not a simple matter here. We sailed to Ambergris Caye and then anchored by the very charming town of San Pedro. Steve went ashore and returned a while later with a boatful of guests: Mr. Customs man, Mr. Port Captain and Mr. Agriculture. Our boat got a thorough inspection and we were finally deemed OK to remain in the country. 

Ambergris Caye is a busy island with lots of tourists. At anchor your boat is rocked to and fro from passing tour boats...busy, busy, busy. Ashore there are lots of shops and you can find some good provisions. Eating out is tempting with many good restaurants. This was one of our favorites. They call the cuisine Mayan but how would we know?? It was good so we were happy.
Nice fire house.

Good local beers

You can only take so much boat traffic and after two days at Ambergris Caye we were ready for calmer waters. We would be back soon, however, because we had arranged for Meghan and Joe to fly to San Pedro from Belize City. No problem. There was a great Caye a short 1-2 hour sail away that we knew would be a wonderful respite. Tally Ho to Caye Caulker. Here life was slow and laid back. Great small restaurants

Local food here is fish and more fish. If you like fish this is the place for you if you don't like fish

You can try some Dragon Fruit. The strong color would suggest a strong taste, sweet maybe? Not so, it is very bland but it is supposed to be very good for you!

The streets in Caye Caulker are made of shoes required.

Favorite local beach and hangout. You can see the reef in the distance. There is good snorkeling along the reef.

Once anchored we do a few checks. We check for our stow away. He has been with us since Roatan, Honduras and we are getting somewhat attached to him  :). He (or maybe she) is a Remora. They have a suction cup type structure on their topside and attach themselves to fish, boats or anything else that is passing by. Our Remora is showing off hanging upside down.
We also like to check our anchor and when it looks like this we are very happy. Not going anywhere tonight!
The animal life under and near our boat is pretty impressive

Here at Caye Caulker there is lots of turtle grass and lots of turtles



Coral is a good hiding place for these Grunts


We found this seahorse in an aquarium onshore


Porcupine Fish

Big bad eel

Another Grouper

There is only one marina in Belize. Located near Belize City on the mainland, Cucumber Beach Marina is not a bad place to dock for a few days. Belize City has very little to offer tourists but there are some great land excursions to enjoy.

Joe left us after a week and with Meghan onboard we left the marina and followed our friends, Paul and Mary on Roam About, south.
June is the beginning of hurricane season and it was time for us to head towards the Rio Dulce River in Guatemala. We enjoyed some beautiful small cayes on the way south.
Great weather

Meghan getting into Steve's rum....missing Joe alot!

Cruising around

There a lots of small retreats in Belize for underwater studies. A bit pricey but you get college credits.....please Mom and Dad!!!

So far so good, the weather was great, no storms, but it was hot.
Off in the distance we saw lots of clouds and lightning is a nightly occurrence. From June to December, boaters fear lightning strikes almost as much as they fear pirates.

Last night in Belize.

 We arrived in Livingston, Guatemala on June 25th (which happened to be our 35th Wedding Anniversary). We spent 3 weeks prepping the boat and arrived back in San Diego on July 18th. We have lots of great pictures of Guatemala we will post soon. Stay tuned.

Steve, Anne and Meghan