Spring Break—and by extension, the Easter holidays—is set to be Belize’s busiest after the last two years, but those booking a last-minute getaway may be surprised by some of the deals and events still available. With most people out for the long weekend starting midday Thursday, we’re giving you the last-minute lowdown on where to spend the Easter and what to do. It’s the first holiday we’ve had in a long time with no widespread lockdowns, no curfews, and essentially, no restrictions on events. Of course, this hasn’t gone unnoticed. A vast majority of Belizeans and over half of Americans (53%) according to Tripadvisor’s recent Spring Travel Index plans on traveling this spring (March-May). “Almond Beach Resort is fully booked,” a TBC rep confirms, “[but] walk-ins/last minute bookings are welcomed at [our other resorts].” Here’s everything to know about The Belize Collection resorts, and how to make the most of Easter in Belize.
An extra-long weekend rather, guests can head to any of the three lodgings of The Belize Collection to spend the five days and four nights celebrating Easter! Welcome to The Belize Collection. After checking in—with woven lanterns swaying overhead in each respective lobby—you’ll see why so many choose to return year after year.
There are three options: perch up at the foothills of the Sibun Forest Nature Reserve in the shadow of the Sleeping Giant at the Sleeping Giant Rainforest Lodge, or stay just footsteps from the Caribbean Sea in the fishing village of Hopkins with The Lodge at Jaguar Reef, or be close to the bustle of Placencia in Maya Beach with Umaya.
An Easter Egg Hunt for the Kids
We expect the Easter bunny at The Belize Collection to be very, very busy this weekend. More than just a time-honored tradition, you can’t celebrate Easter without an egg hunt in participating resort gardens. Because, for some, Easter is about multicolored plastic eggs with candy hidden along windowsills while for others, it’s the solemn Catholic culmination of 40 days and 40 nights with Holy Week, marking the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Parents can participate, then spend the rest of the day soaking up the nearby activities, whether it’s inside The Nest alongside the Sibun River at Sleeping Giant Lodge, sunbathing in your private plunge pool at Jaguar Reef Lodge, or toes-in-sand at Umaya. Truly, it’s whatever takes your fancy.
The hunt starts on Easter Sunday at 10:00 am in South with Jaguar Reef Lodge; Umaya Resort’s own starts at 2:00 pm; Sleeping Giant Lodge rounds out the evening with theirs at 4:00 pm. Reservations for participation are required.
Kicking off at 10:00 am, what’s Easter without the love of family and friends around a shared table? Whether it’s after Sunday mass or a long-awaited sleep-in, all three Belize Collections resorts are participating with a special Easter brunch menu, and reservations are required.
At The Grove House at Sleeping Giant Lodge, the field-to-table eatery sources its ingredients from its 600-acre farm, neighboring villages, and from local markets. Can’t decide on sweet or savory? Try the ham and cheese cinnamon rolls: warm cinnamon rolls are stuffed with thin slices of pork ham and mozzarella cheese and then baked to fluffy perfection. And of course, because you’re staying in a river valley perfect for cultivating citrus, try The Grove House’s signature citrus jelly with oranges sourced from the property’s orchards alongside local artisan-made peanut butter spread over toasted homemade bread. If you’re more of a ‘shortcut to lunch’ kind of person at brunch, grab the bacon & egg burger instead, which features grilled steak topped with thin slices of pork bacon and a fried egg on a freshly baked burger bun.
At Umaya’s Laguna Restaurante in Maya Beach, try new favorites like organic eggs scrambled with longaniza sausage over corn tortillas served with a side of creamy guacamole. As a Spanish pork sausage similar to chorizo, Belizean longaniza errs closer to the Yucatec interpretation—richly but pleasantly seasoned with indigenous spices like annato. Although for a perfect pastel plate ready for the ‘gram, order the banana and chocolate ganache crepe: buttery crisp edges are layered for a decadent dessert. I mean breakfast. Take in the view of the Placencia Lagoon and Maya Mountain mastiffs with a mimosa or tamarind jalapeño michelada in hand; the latter is bracingly flavorful as a boldly savory beer drink seasoned well with lime, jalapeño, Worcestershire sauce, and chili-salt.
Those who prefer a more defined regional style and, generally, a more laid-back food destination, will find themselves satisfied eating and drinking their way through Hopkins’ darling, The Paddle House. Found beachfront of Jaguar Reef Lodge, the Paddle House’s all-glass-door walls hint at its menu: the restaurant takes stronghold of nature’s bounty just below the Caribbean Sea in eyesight, alongside cultural staples of the neighboring Garifuna community, like ground provisions and coconut milk. For brunch, choose from sweet options—like fluffy coconut pancakes cooked on a griddle with aromatic coconut oil and drizzled with organic honey & candied bacon slices—or savory options; that include thin slices of cured pork leg & selected Mennonite cheese on a homemade croissant. And because it’s brunch (duh!), wash it down with a sorrel mimosa or jalapeño michelada.