home-en, Traveling (en)

Belize, a cultural crossroads

Belize kusmi tea

Turquoise lagoons, majestic palm trees, and dazzling sunlight shining down on stilt houses… It’s not for nothing that Belize now needs no introduction! Here is a little glimpse of the wonders that await in this multicultural country. More than enough to fill you with inspiration… Don’t be surprised if it soon becomes the top destination on your travel list – if it isn’t already!

Belize is an astonishing little country in Central America. It is bordered by Mexico to the west, Guatemala to the south, and the Caribbean Sea along on its east coast. It owes its originality to the vast number of ethnicities that make up its population and the incredible diversity of its landscapes.

 

A country of contrasts

But first, a little history lesson… The Mayans are thought to have been the first to inhabit Belize around 1500 B.C. A long time after, Christopher Columbus was the first European to set foot there in 1502. The country was a British colony for many years – it was even known as British Honduras – before becoming fully independent in 1981. As a result, it is the only Central American country whose official language is English! However, visitors will hear many other languages and dialects spoken around them. There are no fewer than eight different peoples living in Belize – Mayan, Mestizo, Creole, Garifuna, East Indian, Mennonite, Arab, and Chinese. Despite their differences, they all love their country and are eager to offer a warm welcome and experiences enriched by their diversity.

But the immense variety of this magical land doesn’t stop there! Belize is also renowned for its unbelievable biodiversity and unique ecosystems. Swamps, jungles, and forests are found alongside hills, mountains, and nature reserves, all filled with incredibly rich plant and animal life. The leading species to spot include the black orchid, the mahogany tree, the toucan, the hummingbird, the jaguar and the tapir. Discoveries, exoticism, astonishment and a total change of scenery guaranteed! And while the year-round average temperature is 84°F (29°C) go between February and May to avoid the monsoon!

The many faces of Belize, from Mayan temples to ocean floors

Discovering Belize means getting involved in many activities and excursions. Two of the leading things to do are diving and exploring the Mayan ruins. Scuba diving and snorkeling enthusiasts are guaranteed an unforgettable experience. The world’s second-largest coral reef lies off the coast of Belize, stretching 185 miles and listed as a Unesco World Heritage Site. A multitude of little coral islands known as cays surround this natural wonder. This slice of paradise with its enchanting, crystal-clear lagoons and white sand is perfect for relaxing or exploring the magnificent underwater world. The star of the cays is undoubtedly the Great Blue Hole. With its 1,043-foot diameter, this circular sinkhole is one of the world’s biggest dive sites and offers a truly unique adventure!

Hiking through the Mayan ruins is another unmissable activity. Many of the spectacular archeological sites are now open to visitors, such as the ancient city of Caracol. You can even scale its famous, 141-foot-high pyramid, Caana, if you aren’t afraid of heights! Triumphant climbers will be rewarded with breathtaking views over the surrounding jungle. You can also trek up to the restored ruins of Lamanai, one of the oldest Mayan sites. The summit boasts more exceptional vistas over the nearby dense, fascinating, tropical forests.

 

The cultural mix and sensory awakening mean Belize shares a lot with Kusmi, which has always embodied the beauty of blends! Dare to discover this magical land as you dive, climb, dialogue and marvel at every turn… You may never be the same again!