Christmas in Belize

by McNab Editorial Team
Christmas decorated boats

What can you expect from a Christmas in Belize?

Though our coconut palms don’t dress up quite as pretty as your traditional conifers on Christmas – the sun-soaked coast, sparkling blue waters, and famously friendly people make Belize an irresistible tropical escape for the holidays.

With average temperatures ranging between 71°F (22°C) to 80°F (27°C) during December, it’s no surprise that visitors are ditching their snow boots for sandy flip flops. US News & World Report agrees in naming Belize #1 in Affordable Winter Vacations this year.

Whether your wish list experience is naughty or nice, Belize is the perfect place to celebrate the festive season!

For the adventure seekers

Diving, snorkeling, fishing, kitesurfing – you name the water adventure and Belize offers it. This small country is home to the largest barrier reef system in the Western Hemisphere and the second largest in the world. The 180-mile long reef is dotted with various islands, cayes, and atolls. For the daring adventure seeker, a trip to Shark Ray Alley located near Ambergris Caye is a must. Here, the fearless can snorkel with some of the sea’s most feared fish. But not to worry, these friendly nurse sharks don’t bite.

For jungle adventurers, Belize is also home to an array of magnificent natural wonders. Trek through our lush rainforest and discover our hidden caves, waterfalls, and Maya ruins. You can even visit the tallest waterfall in all of Central America – 1000 Foot Falls, which is located in the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve of the Cayo district.

Get in the holiday spirit!

Christmas is a lively time to be in Belize with traditional Christmas masses, parades, and festivities held countrywide. In the northern islands, the town of San Pedro comes alive with the sounds of Christmas carols played out on steel drums for all to enjoy. In Belize City, the island carolers are replaced with marching bands and festive floats which promenade through the city streets during LOVE FM’s annual Christmas Parade.

To experience Christmas lights with a tropical twist, be sure to add to your list the annual Holiday Light Boat Parade along the island coast of Ambergris Caye. Here a convoy of boats light up the sea along San Pedro’s waterfront and compete to see whose boat is the brightest.

It wouldn’t be Christmas without a festive feast…

While many Belizean households enjoy a traditional glass of eggnog accompanied by a slice of black fruit cake, each and every culture in the country adds their very own flavor to Christmas Dinner. The Maya traditionally enjoy tamales – a specialty dish of chicken or pork with tomato sauce and spices, covered with a corn dough, and then wrapped and steamed in banana leaf. The Mestizo celebrate with white Relleno – chicken stuffed with Edam cheese and ground pork, then boiled, baked and topped with a white sauce that includes raisins, onions, tomatoes, olives, capers, slivered almonds and peppers, quite the combination of flavors! The Kriol, of course, carry their fork to a signature dish of stuffed turkey, ham, rice and beans, and potato salad. Whatever the dish, most Belizeans claim their Christmas meal can’t be beaten.

Pile your gifts under a palm tree!

Give the gift of Belize with our top local gift picks:

christmas gift

  • Belizean Coffee Scrub – Belize Product
  • Flavors of Belize Cookbook

Written by Louise Roe

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