The Ultimate Teen Adventure in Belize: Sharks, River Rafting and Ziplines

by Carolee Chanona

School’s out for summer. School’s out forever! Well, maybe not but you’ve got until at least September to maximize their time off—which means there’s no time to waste for vacation. And satisfying even the pickiest of young teenagers starts with your destination. More often than not, adults select a resort and assume the pool alone is enough, or choose based on available food for their picky eaters. While many destinations offer unique adventures for families, Belize is one of the easiest to go and for all budgets. Full disclosure that many of these opportunities are not for the faint of heart and are genuinely epic active adventures.

coppola belize family vacation

Photo by the Family Coppola Hideaways

After all, Belize is never short for a diverse range of outdoor activities—leaving teenagers very little time to be on their devices. From a glistening sugary coastline where snorkeling, scuba diving, SUP boarding, kayaking and even sailing can be enjoyed , right down to fern-lined wilds for day hikes (or zip lining), offerings are abound. Equally, wildlife encounters—from swimming with nurse sharks, feeding wild tarpon, petting southern stingrays or visiting the conservation-minded Belize Zoo for paw-to-hand jaguar encounters—make a very meaningful visit to our shores. Beyond physical pursuits, cultural clues and historical artifacts (like the jungle-hidden, ancient Maya ruins) are always fascinating for teens.

Swimming with sharks off San Pedro


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Ziplining through the rainforest


Photo courtesy Bocawina Rainforest Resort & Adventures

ATV Riding


Photo by Leonardo Melendez Photography

Horseback riding


Cave tubing

belize-floating-cave Photo by Esoteric Vision

Photo by Esoteric Vision

Tarpon feeding

Photo by Quilz Tamay Photography

Feeding Pelicans & Hanging with Sting Rays


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A post shared by Amanda Riley Ferree (@lifeofamandariley)

Belize Iguana Project

Luis and a juvenile Green Iguana.

Luis and a juvenile Green Iguana.

A Fluttering Cloud of Butterflies at The Lodge at Chaa Creek 

Jet Skis & Sea Breeze at Grand Caribe Belize 

jet ski grand caribe resort belize

Photo by Grand Caribe Belize


Paddleboard (sitting or standing) on the sea! Image courtesy Belize Tourism Board



kayaking glovers belize

Kayaking at Glover’s Reef Atoll. Photo by Duarte Dellarole Photography

A Pontoon Tour

jungle pontoon cayo waterfall adventure

Photo courtesy Belizing






After a year like 2020 in an age of virtual learning and Zoom graduations, we won’t blame you if you’re bursting at the seams for adventure. If you’re ready for outrageous and over-the-top experiences for teens (and parents) to experience for the ultimate bragging rights back at home, then you’re ready for Belize.

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