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Battle of St. George’s Caye: Why Belize is an English Speaking Country

The Battle of St. George’s Caye on September 10, 1798 is the most historical battle to happen in the land that is now known as Belize. This battle, however, was the final one of (at least) six attempts by the Spanish to conquer the Baymen (resident woodcutters), which ended in victory for the Baymen, as the Spaniards withdrew when ravaged by sickness during the two and a half-hour fight. If any of the attempts by the Spanish were successful, Great Britain would not have been able to establish British sovereignty over British Honduras, which is now known as Belize. If the British had not colonized the land, Spanish would be the official language of Belize, much like its neighboring countries (Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras). Read below more information about the battle(s) of St. George’s Caye: Prior to this historic final battle, the territory of (modern day) Belize was under dispute by Great Britain and Spain. Although Spain never officially occupied Belize, they considered it a part of its Central American territories, which include Mexico and Guatemala, after a war between England and Spain left much of Central American to be reigned by the Spanish. However, the British had entered the territory as early as 1638 to harvest logwood […]

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San Pedro, the Entertainment Capital of Ambergris Caye

Located on the island of Ambergris Caye, the largest island off the coast of Belize, the town of San Pedro is widely known as the entertainment capital of the country. The inspiration for the 1986 Madonna hit “La Isla Bonita”, San Pedro Town is known for its restaurants, bars, and lively nightlife scene while still retaining plenty of easygoing charm and is a popular spot for visitors to base their fishing, snorkeling and diving vacations thanks to its close proximity to the Belize Barrier Reef. With only 10,000 year-round inhabitants, San Pedro is a shorts and sandals town (and sometimes even a barefoot town) with a historic downtown ideal for stopping to have a leisurely meal or sip on a cold beer. Although a few cars are permitted on the island, most residents and visitors to San Pedro Town prefer to get around by bicycle or golf cart. Once primarily focused on fishing, San Pedro has since grown to become the tourism destination of choice for visitors to Belize. Many of Belize’s most popular festivals and celebrations are held in San Pedro Town, including a raucous and colorful Carnival season, replete with paint and water “bottles”, the International Costa Maya […]

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2016 International Costa Maya Festival

First held in 1991, the International Costa Maya Festival has since boomed to become one of the most popular entertainment events in Belize. Held every year in San Pedro, the capital of Ambergris Caye, the festival is a three-day celebration of beauty, music, and food.

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Eat More Lobster at the San Pedro Lobster Fest

San Pedro, the thriving capital of Belize’s Ambergris Caye, will be celebrating the 10th annual Lobster Festival starting on Wednesday, June 15. Regularly acclaimed as the number one festival in the country, the San Pedro Lobster Festival heralds the beginning of the lobster season with a 10-day celebration. Alongside an incredible array of delicious lobster-themed delicacies, the festival will also feature a wide variety of activities for the whole family to enjoy.

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La Ruta Maya Belize River Challenge

Now that spring is here, excitement in Belize is growing as one of the biggest sporting events of the year, the La Ruta Belize River Challenge, starts this Friday.

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Belize: Top cultural vacation destination for travelers

Belize is one of the most beautiful countries in the world thanks to an unspoiled landscape of tropical rainforests and jungles, fertile plains, mountain summits, and a unique coastline that is home to vibrant marine ecosystems. Travelers to Belize have a unique opportunity to explore the natural wonders of the country while experiencing a rich cultural society that is filled with a harmonious blend of different peoples, music, traditions, and food. Geographically, Belize is located in Central America between Mexico and Guatemala but culturally it resembles many of its neighbors in the Caribbean and Central America. The official language of Belize is English but the most common language spoken is the Creole dialect. Eight different and eclectic ethnic groups harmoniously co-exist within Belize: the Creole, Mestizo, Maya, Garifuna, East Indian, Mennonite, European, and Chinese. Each of these groups proudly maintains their culture, food, and mother tongue while blending with their neighbors to form the unique melting pot that is Belize. As you travel across Belize, don’t be surprised to hear a wide variety of languages. In the north, many people speak Spanish while in Belize City the most popular languages spoken are standard English and the Creole dialect. Southern Belize […]

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Easter Celebrations in Belize

Celebrate the Four Days of Easter in Belize Easter is a very special holiday in Belize as locals celebrate the festival with their unique blend of the exotic and the familiar. All around the country, Belizeans make the most out of the four-day holiday to celebrate Easter in a way that visitors from America, Canada and Europe will partially recognize and partially find engaging and interesting. In every store window you’ll see plenty of chocolate eggs and bunnies, as well as the familiar marshmallow chicks and jellybeans familiar to Americans. For local Belizeans, Easter dinner includes familiar standards like fry fish, potatoes, and roasted meat but also local favorites like hot cross buns, tamales, garnaches (refried beans on a tortilla), salbutes (fried tortillas topped with cabbage and pulled chicken) and plenty of beans. The homes and shops use a combination of the usual Easter decorations but add lots of brilliant color from using the blossoms of local flowers and trees. As the weather is almost always gorgeous on Easter, swimming and backyard barbecues are a popular Belizean activity. The melting pot culture of Belize offers many different flavors when it comes to celebrating Easter. Depending on where you are in […]

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Family Vacations in Belize

The lovely Central American nation of Belize is becoming increasingly popular as a family vacation destination. With lovely beaches fronting the Caribbean Sea, a friendly English-speaking population, and located just a short flight from the United States, Belize has all the ingredients for a quality family vacation. Wildlife A large percentage of Belize is protected parks and wildlife sanctuaries. Visiting one of these many protected areas gives kids and adults a chance to see and interact with many exotic and interesting species. Located in the lovely Belize River Valley, the Community Baboon Sanctuary measures about 20 square miles and is home to the endangered black howler monkey, known by locals as baboons. Local Creole villagers serve as nature guides, bringing visitors up close to the free-roaming monkeys living in a natural habitat. Another special family-friendly destination to see local wildlife is at the Belize Zoo. Spanning more than 29 acres, this zoo is unique in that all of its residents are animals which were rescued from captivity, orphaned, or are being nursed back to health. The Belize Zoo is a great place to see jaguars, ocelots, and the huge Baird’s tapir, a large rodent that is Belize’s national animal. Swimming, […]

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Plan Your Dream Destination Wedding in Belize

Belize is truly a tropical paradise, with gorgeous sunny weather, cool sea breezes, and miles of white beaches. Tie the knot in tropical splendor, with the sparkling waters of the Caribbean as a backdrop and your friends and family gathered to support your special union. The small nation of Belize is located just south of Mexico, a short flight from many destinations in the United States. With a gorgeous coastline fronting the Caribbean, majestic waterfalls, pristine rainforests, deep caves, jungle rivers, and some of the best diving, snorkeling, and swimming spots in the Western Hemisphere, Belize is one of the most beautiful unspoiled areas of the world. Home to a diverse range of exotic flora and fauna as well as many Maya ruins like Altun Ha and Xununtunich, Belize is truly a dream destination for your wedding. Requirements for Getting Married in Belize Foreigners are allowed to legally marry in Belize and the procedure is rather straightforward. The groom and bride must present copies of their birth certificates, as well as proof of their citizenship (a valid passport will suffice) to the Register General. When applicable, you will also need supplementary paperwork like divorce decrees. Couples seeking to get married […]

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The Villas at Banyan Bay Named Winner in 2016 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards for Hotels

The Villas at Banyan Bay  has been selected as a recipient of the 2016 Travelers’ Choice Award for Top Hotel from the prestigious travel website company TripAdvisor. The Travelers’ Choice Award is the highest honor given by TripAdvisor, with selections based on the combined reviews and feedback from the global travel community. For the 14th consecutive year, TripAdvisor has named the world’s best properties after carefully reviewing and tabulating millions of reviews and feedback opinions from travelers around the globe during the previous year. Travelers’ Choice Awards are selected for the categories of Top Hotels, Bargain Hotels, B&Bs and Inns, Luxury Hotels, Service, and Small Hotels. Winners of the Travelers’ Choice Award are selected on a criteria of outstanding service, quality, and value. The Villas at Banyan Bay is proud to have been selected by the global travel community for the Travelers’ Choice Award in the category of Top Hotel. “We extend a hearty congratulations to all of the hotels that won this year’s Travelers’ Choice Awards for Top Hotel,” stated Barbara Messing, TripAdvisor’s chief marketing officer. “When travelers choose where to book their next trip, they should consider the winners of this prestigious award for having demonstrated outstanding value, […]

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Belize is the Perfect Honeymoon Destination
A Belize Wedding
Banyan Bay Donates to First Children’s Home on Ambergris Caye
WestJet and Southwest making it easy for travelers to visit Belize