San Ignacio and Caye Caulker – Belize
We originally had plans to visit Israel during this time but we ended up changing for two reasons. First, the 24 hours quarantine requirement had not been lifted and a full day is a lot of time on a one week vacation to sit indoors. Second, many of the tour companies we were going to utilize for day trips, as well as activities we had planned, either had not resumed or were operating at a limited capacity. (There were also several terrorist attacks in Tel-Aviv this week so an inadvertent third reason as well.) Both these reasons made it feel like we would be missing out on too much of Israel to make the trip make sense at this time. I’ll keep this rough draft itinerary on call for a future trip though – it looks wonderful!
That being said, it was back to the drawing board. Signs of revenge travel had started as flight prices began their upward trend. Routes were going for over double what I paid in the past so it was difficult to justify some destinations. One place I researched a rough draft itinerary for was Belize and I remember being amazed at the variety of activities. Belize has a bit of everything – the jungle, wildlife, adventure, beaches, and the second largest barrier reef in the world! After going through the details with Kevin, he was sold and was Belize bound.
For travel restrictions, Belize lifted the testing requirement for fully vaccinated travelers. The only additional requirement was purchasing government issued health insurance which was $18 when we traveled.
The difficult part was shortened the trip from a week to five days so we cut quite a bit out of the trip that would have been nice to include but for five days, we were very happy with what we had in store. I will have a “perfect itinerary” for you to decide yourself on how to make your perfect Belize trip as well. We wanted to do a bit of the jungle and a bit of the beach so we settled on two nights in San Ignacio and two nights in Caye Caulker. While it was definitely not the trip to check everything off the list in Belize, it would be enough to get a taste.
We left on an early morning flight to Belize to get the most out of our first day. Unfortunately at the time we traveled, the direct flights were only occurring on the weekends so we had a layover that lengthened the journey there a little bit. Once we arrived in Belize City, we navigated customs and immigration, as well as a health screening. While we did not need a COVID test to enter, I still had one anyway but all we needed was our vaccination cards and a completed attestation.
There are multiple ways to get around Belize – renting a car, having a driver, ferry, and plane – and we used several different modes on this trip all with the idea in mind that we needed to save time as we were only here for five days. While we considered flying to our first destination, it was actually not going to get us there faster than driving and it was the price. Our Airbnb host arranged for a driver to pick us up at the airport and bring us directly to the Airbnb in San Ignacio.
The drive itself was an easy hour and a half from the city and into the jungle. The scenery slowly changed as we drove closer and closer to San Ignacio. Farm land turned into lush and hilly jungle.
Read about our time in San Ignacio – here!
We arrived at a tiny airport in San Ignacio to take us to the opposite side of Belize to Caye Caulker. Note here that there are many ways to get across to the coast. If driving or taking a bus, it is two hours to the port where a ferry is then used to get to the island. The ferry is a forty five minute ride to Caye Caulker. Flying was more expensive but only a half hour in total landing on the island itself. With so little time on this trip, the minutes add up!
The plane arrived on the tiny landing strip and only held three passengers. I think this was the smallest plane we have ever used for transport before! It was pretty darn close to having a private plane to personally transit us to Caye Caulker.
And with that, we traded the jungle for the Caribbean Sea.
Read about our time in Caye Caulker – here!
While we knew it would be, it was a very fast and jam packed five days in Belize. We packed up our things and checked out of the Airbnb. Our original plan was to take the forty-five minute ferry to Belize City then take a car to the airport. We had such a pleasant experience flying from San Ignacio to Caye Caulker that we decided to just do that instead which would take us directly to the airport. We took a golf cart to the small airport where we waited for our larger size plane seating twelve this time. It was a fully packed flight as Sunday’s popular departure day transported guests to Belize International airport. We had an easy trip home full of new memories made in Belize.
We had such an incredible trip to Belize and we left wondering why it was not a more popular destination like the neighboring countries. While I will not complain about it, Belize has so much to offer and it really does make for a great trip, especially from the USA. There really is something for everyone that can create any time of trip you want all while offering unique experiences.