#A preserved nature
Aware of its exceptional natural resources, Belize has been able to work to protect its environment. Almost half of its territory is protected by numerous nature reserves. To you the lush jungles landscapes hiding a thousand archaeological treasures, the Mayan mountains, the caves, the white sandy beaches of the coast and islands, and the second largest coral reef in the world. All these wonders have the added advantage of being concentrated in a small territory of just over 20,000 km², which makes it possible to limit travel times between two points of interest as much as possible. Professional guides trained throughout the country offer quality tours that allow you to learn more about the regions you are travelling through. Belize's fauna and flora are also one of its great assets, as with a census of 150 mammal species, 550 bird species, 600 fish species, 150 amphibians and reptiles and 4,000 flowering plant species, the country has a breathtaking biodiversity.
Mayan archaeological treasures :
Belize is inseparable from its Mayan heritage, which still resonates in its history and culture today. The country is part of Mesoamerica, a cultural and geographical area that saw the birth of this brilliant civilization, and which has left behind exceptional archaeological treasures. Archaeologists who have explored these sites have been able to discover a civilization endowed with important scientific knowledge, particularly in astronomy and mathematics, and a culture of rare richness. Even today, people are still trying to unravel many of the mysteries left behind by the Mayans. Belize has about twenty sites whose visit provides a better understanding of this history. Perhaps the most famous site is Caracol, in the western part of the country in the Cayo District, for its crucial historical interest. Caracol was the centre of one of the greatest kingdoms of the Mayan civilization and extends over an area of 200 km². Many other sites are also famous and their visit may allow you to discover part of the great Mayan mystery: Xunantunich, Altun Ha, Cahal Pech, Lamanai or Lubaantun.
Paradise beaches, kingdom of idleness
Whether on the Caribbean coast or on the country's hundreds of islands and cays, you can try your hand at the comfort of Belize's white sand without limit. Palms and coconut trees are also on the agenda, and it is difficult to get tired of these dream sceneries mixing turquoise crystal clear water and multicoloured fish banks. Often the blue of a swimming pool completes the colour palette. Hammocks, the country's specialty, are located all over the beaches and restaurants to offer you optimal comfort, and for those who quickly get tired of sunbathing, all that remains is to discover the underwater world of the country, renowned throughout the world for its richness, which is difficult to match.
Ethnic and cultural wealth
Through its history of successive waves of immigration from all over the world, Belize has built its identity around a unique mix of populations in this part of the world. While the country has only about 370,000 inhabitants, you can still practice your English, Spanish, German, Creole or Mandarin! Mayan, Garifuna, Creole cultures, and European, American and Asian influences are very strong and highlighted.
© Dominique Auzias & Jean-Paul Labourdette
Practical guide for you trip to Belize