Historical & Archaeological Itinerary in Belize 

by Jiyoung Chehade
st. john's anglican cathedral

The country of Belize evolved from a rich history; from North to South you’ll find interesting back stories behind the people, sites, and monuments in each district. So, if the purpose of your trip is to learn and see the deep roots from which Belize was made then this itinerary is just for you. Here are some of our top picks for historical and archaeological sites in Belize. 

Belize City 

St John’s Cathedral  

(Pictured above) is located in downtown Belize City; this is the oldest church in Belize that still has its original colonial design. Here you’ll learn about the construction of this church, the 4 kings that were crowned here, and you’ll get a tour around the church.  

 

Museum of Belize  

Housed in a former prison, this museum gives you a real look into the country’s past. You’ll find an actual prison cell, Mayan artifacts, pictures of important events in Belize history and much more. This museum is located in Belize City, directly in front of the Central Bank of Belize. 

museum of belize

Photo by Museum of Belize

Altun Ha 

The most accessible Maya site in the country, it’s a small site and the temples aren’t very tall so if you’re afraid of heights then this is somewhere you’d want to visit. This site is located about 45 minutes north of the Philip Goldson Int’l Airport. 

Orange Walk 

Las Banquita’s House of Culture 

Las Banquitas is located in the heart of Orange Walk near the New River. Here you’ll find many artifacts and tools such as Mayan ceramic, carvings, and weapons; and tools used by the logwood cutters to cut mahogany, and tap trees for chicle. You’ll also find the history behind the sugar and logwood industries in Belize.  

Lamanai  

One of the largest and oldest ceremonial Maya sites in Belize, traveling there is quite a scenic adventure. You will need to get on a boat from Orange Walk and travel down the New River where you will see abundant wildlife species. At the site, you will be able to explore and climb the temples if you so choose. 

lamanai

Stann Creek 

Gulisi Garifuna Museum 

Many centuries ago, the African slaves and local Arawak/Carib people intermarried and therefore created the Garifuna culture. This museum focuses on that culture along with their history, music, people, traditions, and spiritual practices. They are located in the Stann Creek District near Chuluhadiwa Park.   

Cayo District 

Xunantunich 

Located in the Cayo District; it’s only a short ferry ride across the river. This site has various levels of temples, but the tallest is El Castillo which you can climb and where you’ll enjoy the best panoramic view of the Belize jungle.  

xunantunich

Written by Jiyoung Chehade

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