Here Are Five Belize Bucket List Ideas for When You Visit This Winter

by Giulissa Hernandez

Winter might be known for snowflakes and cold weather, but in Belize, it’s all about sunshine, adventure, and tropical bliss. With diverse ecosystems and a captivating blend of history and natural beauty, there are endless possibilities for a magical escape. Here, you’ll have all the freedom to complete your bucket list before the year ends. Instead of staying inside by the fireplace for warmth, chase sunsets as they set behind towering mountains and on calm waters. The warmth of the ambiance, the Belizean people, and action-packed adventures will keep the flame going. Here are five adventures to try and check off your bucket list when you visit Belize this winter. 

1. Skydive into The Blue Hole

We’re starting strong right off the bat. When we say bucket list, we mean it! How many people have skydiving on their list? We’re sure more than just a few. In Belize, combine this thrilling adventure with the view of a lifetime. You’re not just skydiving out of any plane and over any landscape. You’ll have the opportunity to soar over the Great Blue Hole.

Afterward, if you want to stay in the area and explore, venture beneath the waves and explore one of the world’s most iconic dive sites. This colossal marine sinkhole is a UNESCO World Heritage site, known for its striking blue waters and vibrant coral formations. Swim alongside nurse sharks and giant groupers. This experience will get your heart racing and set the tone for all the other Belize adventures to come. 

2. Explore Ancient Maya Cities

The sun sets behind the Mayan temples at Caracol in western Belize. After nearly 1,000 years in darkness, the site was discovered in 1937 by a woodcutter; archaeological excavations soon followed.
PHOTOGRAPH BY IMAGEBROKER, ALAMY STOCK PHOTO

Delve into Belize’s expansive history by visiting centuries-old Maya ruins. Sites like Xunantunich, Caracol, and Lamanai offer an opportunity to step back in time and witness the architectural marvels of the Maya. Ascend stone pyramids, explore sacred temples, and marvel at intricate carvings while you soak up the enchanting tales of the ancient Maya civilization. Visiting these temples reminds us how far we’ve come, and how far we have yet to go in the future! It’s always interesting to step into the world of the Mayas, even if just for a day. 

3. Discover Waterfalls and Caves

Photo by Gaia Riverlodge

Become a character in Jumanji for a day with this adventurous trek. Belize’s western district, Cayo,  holds some truly astounding waterfalls and caves. Where can you find them? Traverse through the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve, boasting all-encompassing panoramic views and breathtaking sites like the Rio on Pools and Big Rock Falls. Hike to these spots one by one and then cool off in emerald pools beneath cascading waters.

Similar: Have You Visited This Magnificent Belize Attraction Yet?

For an underground adventure, journey to captivating caves such as Barton Creek Cave and Actun Tunichil Muknal, where you’ll find ancient artifacts and crystal formations deep within the Earth. Accomplish another thing off your bucket list with this adventure.

4. Make New Connections

Tortilla Making with the San Antonio Women’s Cooperative. Photo by the Belize Tourism Board.

While finding deep connections with people may not be at the top of many lists, we guarantee it’s just as important. After the pandemic, many find it essential to find and establish true connections with where they visit.  It’s even becoming a trend! According to a niche travel blog, cultural immersion is described as “An experience that allows you to fully engage with the destination and its culture, leaving having learned more than you would on an average vacation.”

It’s not just about seeing the sights, but more so, learning about the local culture, and its people and experiencing life as if you lived there.”

In Belize, you can form strong bonds as soon as you arrive. Sign up for cultural tours such as a cooking class, chocolate-making ceremony, or a Maya spiritual cleansing. If you come in November, you’ll even have a chance to partake in Garifuna Settlement Day, a vibrant holiday that remembers the brave people who came to Belize’s southern coasts. Savor the taste of hudut, sahou, and cassava bread. 

Get to Know the Wildlife

Students marvel at the Community Baboon Sanctuary. Image by Belize Wildlife and Referral Clinic (BWRC)

Belize is home to a colorful array of species. Encounter animals found only in this part of Central America and cross it off your bucket list as a once-in-a-lifetime encounter. Deep in the jungles, keep an eye peeled for ocelots, jaguarundis, and howler monkeys. Make sure to bring your binoculars with you! You can spot ten times more animals if you carefully observe from a distance.

If you want to make waves, go underwater exploring in the Caribbean Sea and discover a whole other world of wildlife. Snorkel alongside sea turtles, rays, and colorful fish, or even join whale shark excursions when these gentle giants migrate through Belizean waters. These encounters can last in your memories for years to come.

Featured Photo by Duarte Dellarole Photography

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