Belize Itinerary: How to Spend 3 Days in San Ignacio

by Gisselle Hernandez

As one of the twin towns in the central hub of Western Belize, San Ignacio is an all-embracing cultural mecca rife with adventures. The historical town is located about two hours away from the international airport in the Cayo district and is a must not just for first-time visitors but for travelers wanting more depth in their travels. You can spend an entire week here and not get enough, but what if you only have one long weekend to explore the region? Below we’ve listed our short itinerary on how to spend three days in San Ignacio Town.

Day 1: Lunch with feathered friends 

After driving from the airport on the quaint and charming road to San Ignacio, it’s time to enjoy lunch at your base stay in the area: San Ignacio Resort Hotel. The resort’s on-site restaurant, Running W, produces the richest meats that make delicious burgers and sandwiches. They also have classic authentic Belizean cuisine. However, the icing on the cake is being able to have “lunch with the birds” as many tropical birds flutter around the area, perching on trees or on the nearby veranda. 

Cahal Pech Maya Site belize cayo

Cahal Pech Maya Site. Photo by Duarte Dellarole

After you’ve munched down every last bite, it’s time to explore Cahal Pech, a Maya site that is conveniently about a four-minute drive from the hotel. Make sure to stock up on bug spray before your venture and don comfortable hiking shoes. For a stunning archaeological combination, hit up Xunantunich in nearby San Jose Succotz after Cahal Pech. By the time you’re done with both, you’d have earned a hearty pasta papalina at the Running W Restaurant

Day 2: Adrenaline & Adventures 

big rock falls San Ignacio Resort Hotel

Big Rock Falls. Image via San Ignacio Resort Hotel

Day two requires a bright and early start if you want to make the most of the short time in the San Ignacio Area. You can dedicate your second day solely to thrill-seeking though what that looks like is totally customizable. If you prefer mountains and jungle scapes, head to Mountain Pine Ridge about a couple of hours away from the resort. You’ll have the chance to jump in waterfalls, explore caves and see the beauty of the broadleaf-turned-pine rainforests. 

Zimmerman_BTB_Vagrants_Cave_Tubing_4409

Cave Tubing in Belize. Image via Belize Tourism Board

For adventure a little closer to civilization, choose a combination zip lining and cave tubing at Jaguar Paw. You’ll be kicking off the morning with a heart-pumping adventure and in the afternoon, relax at the resort pool while iguanas suntan nearby. 

Day 3: Laidback & Easy 

Puffy fry jacks are Pop’s signature. Image via Belize Tourism Board

Many may argue your last day should go out with a bang, but after a high-energy itinerary yesterday, it’s best to kick back and relax before hopping on a flight the next day. Still, since you only have three days it’s best to wake up early and head for breakfast at the local favorite Pop’s in downtown San Ignacio. Slather the fluffiest fry jacks with beans and eggs before downing a hot coffee. Now you’re ready to explore the historical downtown San Ignacio, next up on your itinerary. Make your way to the San Ignacio Market located on the banks of the Macal River where it is open seven days a week from 5 a.m. to 6 p.m. Chat with the locals and buy from local artisans. You can also have lunch here since many Belizean and Hispanic-inspired restaurants dot the area. 

The Green Iguana Conservation Project [Photo Courtesy: Kaitlin Narciso/HOLR Magazine]

In the afternoon, spend the precious time you have left at San Ignacio Resort Hotel. Visit the iguanas at the Green Iguana Rehabilitation Center and make some scaled friends. Walk the medicinal trail to imbue your soul with nature and wildlife. For a truly rejuvenating experience, reserve an in-room spa treatment that involves natural ingredients and holistic practices. From aromatherapies, massages, and facials, the spa service at SIRH does not disappoint. Now you’re refreshed and reenergized to take on any itinerary hassles the following day in San Ignacio. Happy exploring!

Header image of The San Ignacio Market in Western Belize. Image via @Amber_CRNA via Instagram. 

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