Every traveler has their own bucket list itinerary when they visit Belize, and most of it revolves around the sea, sun, and sand. But while the Caribbean jewel does hold its own when it comes to world-renowned beaches, there is a smorgasbord of things to do across the entire country. If your vacation falls on a longer length of stay, hit up each region in Belize to get the full sense of what the enriching destination has to offer. To get you started, we’ve curated an ultimate powerhouse of cool things to do in every Belize region.
Go on a Crocodile Safari. If you truly want to impress your friends who have only just learned Belize isn’t the same as Brazil, tag along on a crocodile safari. This unique nighttime river expedition begins in Orange Walk Town, the taco capital of Belize. On this tour, you’ll help out the knowledgeable nature guides on checking, tagging, and re-releasing the crocs into their natural habitats. But don’t start hyperventilating just yet. All crocs will be no bigger than three feet long, but that doesn’t mean the cool factor is any less in this Northern Belize region. Not only are you helping the tracking and preservation of Belize’s biodiversity, but you also get cool pics to splash all over your Instagram.
Swim with sharks. Putting the wild in another wildlife adventure is Shark Ray Alley off Ambergris Caye. As if briefly holding up crocs weren’t enough, you get to jump right in literal shark-infested waters at Hol Chan Marine Reserve. But once again, your safety isn’t compromised as the only snacks these rubbery-skinned nurse sharks are interested in are the small fish around them. Swim alongside stingrays and giant sea turtles as well, if sharks aren’t your exact cup of chum. Either way, the warm Caribbean waters, and vibrant corals will be enough for it to be the coolest thing you did in this region.
Visit Altun Ha. Less than an hour away from the international airport is the Maya site of Altun Ha. This ancient abandoned city makes for a quick city break when looking to get out from the hustle and bustle. It’s also an ideal location to get to know Belize’s past as well as enjoy the grand expanse of greenery surrounded by the structures. What makes Altun Ha – translated to “Rock Stone Pond” – is that the region’s largest jade head was discovered here. You can see a replica of it at the visitor center since the original is under tight lock and key.
Explore ATM Cave. Inland Belize is known to hoard most of its adventurous activities but for good reason. On the western end of the country, dense rainforests, rich biodiversity, and vast cave systems rule the region. For the latter, you’ll want to explore the best of the best and that is the Actun Tunichil Muknal cave. The ATM Cave was well-known way before National Geographic named it a Top Sacred Cave in the world back in 2019. Archaeologists have been completely astounded by it since its discovery years ago, and now it remains one of the most popular caving activities in Belize. Dare to venture inside and you’ll be greeted by vast, dark caverns, Maya pottery, and even a crystallized skeleton. All for the low low price or passion, endurance, and sheer will (since the difficulty is reserved for fit travelers.)
Learn the art of chocolate making. Eating chocolate is one of the finest joys in life, according to many, but it’s also a cool thing to do in this Southern Belize region. Learning to make chocolate could very well be second. Head down to Southern Belize and learn how to make the sweet delicacy at an organic cacao farm. You’ll become acquainted with the weird-looking fruit that bestows the precious cacao beans and learn how to turn them into liquidy goodness. The Maya learned how to harness the power of the cacao, and down here their descendants will teach you just how detailed (and rewarding) the process of producing chocolate is.
Try out Ziplining. For a sense of pure unadulterated coolness, you can’t go wrong with good ol’ ziplining. Make the coastal village of Hopkins your base before setting off to soar in the nearby jungles. A great place to try out your make-believe wings is at Bocawina National Park. Said to have the best ziplining adventures in the country, Bocawina is one of the most stunning reserves in Belize. Peek over the jungle canopy and admire the swaths of greenery enveloping the Earth. Strap on your harness, secure your GoPro, and launch yourself into the beyond, knowing you are officially the coolest version of yourself you’ve ever been.