Belize is a happy harbour for beach bound romantics—just take a southbound turn down the Yucatán coast. This English-speaking Central American and Caribbean nation has been a long-time, low-key tourists’ gem for some time, especially those looking for easy-breezy vacations. Despite a lack of large hotel chains and sprawling resorts, Belize is one of the easiest countries to travel through. But, that partly what makes Belize so special. Not to mention, the famously hospitable Belizean people and close proximity of its cities—connected through a network of small planes operated by just two local airlines. So if the beach is calling after months at home, answer with Ambergris Caye – choosing between any of the breezy beach hotels below.
For those looking to get away from it all, meet Matachica Resort: an eco-chic island lodge in Belize with colorful beach casitas perched within steps of the Caribbean Sea. Spread across 10 acres of pristine beach, 26 individual villas combine the best of natural elements, like thatch roofing and open air hammocks, with modern comforts. One benefit of beachside living? No shoes means no problem at the onsite Mambo Restaurant, serving up the freshly-caught seafood from local fishermen.
Besides being beachside, Sunbreeze Suites on the south edge of the picturesque San Pedro offers 21 suites to enjoy the best of the town. Eight Oceanfront suites and thirteen Oceanview suites directly face the Caribbean Sea and the infamous Belize Barrier Reef, found just a half mile offshore. Marvel at waves breaking with earshot from your private balcony—a given regardless of suite type—on the world’s second largest barrier reef. Walk to town to explore shops, restaurants and galleries or stick to the SunBreeze’s open-air beachfront Jambel’s Jerk Pit for poolside Caribbean dining.
For easy access to dives, stay in the heart of downtown at Ramon’s Village Resort—a charming locally-operated hotel with thatched-roof accommodations, tropical flowers, retro furnishings, and the oldest on-site dive shop in the entire country. Beachside, stay in Tahitian-styled cottages (modeled from the Polynesian island of Bora Bora) with Belize’s local craftsmanship of native materials. Besides, you are in no concrete condo encompassed by concrete parking lots. Bounce between Ramon’s Village Resort’s tropical garden interior that’s lined with Royal Palms and hibiscus, to the beach, and back.
Although Belize’s Victoria House Resort & Spa is set two miles outside of the town, the immaculate white sand beach is worth a little social distancing. Inside, 42 rooms shines across 10 acres as intimate and casual; rooms vary in size and style, however they all have garden and sea views. Choose from a Casita, Plantation Room, Suite or Private Villas; and for dining, bounce between the Admiral’s Bar and Palmilla Restaurant. So while Victoria House is an award-winning luxury resort, expect a casual, relaxed and comfortable vibe – exactly what you need for an easy, breezy beach hotel.
While The Landings at Tres Cocos are not a hotel per se, the beachfront condominiums deserve an honorable mention. Located just one mile north of the bridge outside San Pedro Town, two adjacent properties face the Caribbean Sea: Bermuda Beach and Bermuda Landing. Here, choose up to 5-bedroom units – both equipped with an onsite management team that handles all the rest. After all, two fresh water swimming pools, a salt water swimming pool, and beach side BBQ cooking station also helps sweeten the deal.
Welcome to Las Terrazas: the ritzy resort on Ambergris Caye inviting guests to recharge body and mind at their private seaside refuge. Iconic wooden, over-water swings and white Pueblo Revival architecture are just the beginning. With a 70-foot palm-lined pool as the focal point to indecisively lay in and lay out of at the same time as the centerpiece of the resort, its crisp, 37 high-ceilinged “townhouses” range in size from 1,000 to over 3,000 square feet. Soak in beachy Belize views, which at Las Terrazas, include Pool, Tropical Courtyard or Lagoon views. The sleek, all-white boutique hotel boasts ocean, pool, tropical courtyard or lagoon views; that is, in addition to its open-air lobby, signature O Restaurant, plus on-site spa and wellness center.
Meanwhile, there truly is something for every need and budget on Ambergris Caye, Belize’s largest island and a longtime haven for expats. Dubbed La Isla Bonita after the 1987 Madonna song about the island, Ambergris Caye is renowned for its water sports, snorkeling, scuba diving and beachside living. After all, the beach beckons, and in Belize, you’re on island time.