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You won’t believe how many electrifying and rejuvenating adventures you can fit into this 5-day Belize getaway. In Belize City, take your pick between a lava-tubing excursion, a rainforest canopy zip line adventure or a visit to the Belize Zoo. Each choice offers insights into Belize's rich natural treasures. On a tubing excursion, see crystalline formations, stalagmites and stalactites as you float through limestone cave systems that once housed ancient Mayan ceremonial centers.
Or get a different perspective on a thrilling zip line tour across six platforms through Belize's subtropical rainforest. Animal lovers will enjoy an introduction to the animals of Belize at the Belize Zoo—a third choice—where species like jaguars and black howler monkeys greet visitors.
Then venture to one of the most easily accessible Mayan ruins in Belize, Altun Ha. This small but well-preserved site was once an important trading post and center of Mayan culture. Wander among its two large central plazas surrounded by midsized pyramids and mounds. Only a few of the most imposing temples, tombs and pyramids have been uncovered and rebuilt; hundreds more lie under the jungle. Many jade, pearl and obsidian artifacts have been discovered here, including the unique jade-head sculpture of Kinich Ahau (the Mayan sun god), the largest carved jade piece from the Mayan era.
Conclude your trip on Ambergris Caye on the Belize Barrier Reef, the second largest barrier reef in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Opt for a snorkeling excursion at Hol Chan Reserve, one of Belize's most popular diving sites.
Experience the dazzling beauty of aquamarine waters filled with giant groupers, nurse sharks, sea turtles and sting rays. Or swim through several types of corals and schools of small, colorful fish at Mexico Rock, a star coral patch located in shallow waters, perfect for beginning snorkelers. A glass-bottom boat adventure along a barrier reef is another option, unless you prefer a free day to roam this island in paradise.
• 4 nights accommodations: 2 nights in Belize City and 2 nights in Ambergris Caye
• Meals - Daily breakfast, 2 lunches and 1 dinner
• On-tour transportation plus boat to/from Ambergris Caye
• Activity in Belize City - Choose a cave tubing excursion, zip line adventure or a visit to the Belize Zoo
• Sights - Visit the Mayan ruins at Altun Ha, dated from 250 BC
• Activity in Ambergris Caye - Choose snorkeling at Hol Chan Reserve, snorkeling at Mexico Rock or a glass bottom boat tour
• Round-trip airport transfers
Please note: This is a set itinerary. It cannot be customized although additional pre-tour or post-tour hotel nights can be added, subject to availability. Upgraded hotels can also be requested on Ambergris Caye. Inquire at time of booking.
Day 1- Arrive in Belize
Arrive at Belize Airport where you will be greeted outside and driven to the Radisson Fort George Hotel & Marina in Belize City. During your stay, you can make use of the hotel's outstanding amenities. Entertainment will be provided this evening.
Accommodation: Radisson Fort George Hotel - 2 nights
Day 2 - Choice of Activity
Pick one of three half-day activities:
• Cave Tubing – Cave tubing is one of the most electrifying and rejuvenating adventures you can experience in Belize. Explore some of Belize’s finest caves via inner tube and hiking trails and see ancient Mayan ceremonial centers, underground waterfalls and the famous crystal cathedral. Lunch will be provided on site. Duration: 2 hours. Level of difficulty: Easy to moderate.
Note: Bring bathing suits, beach towel, water shoes (flip flops not recommended), sunscreen and bug repellant. There are changing rooms onsite. Your guide will help you get your inner tube, life jacket and headlight/lamp then you will walk down to the river and through the jungle to the entry point for your adventure.
• Zip lining – For those interested in a different brand of fun, a rainforest canopy top, zip line adventure may be right for you. Zip lining is as close as you can get to flying over Belize’s subtropical rainforest. Experience the thrill of 6 platforms from which you zip across the jungle tops with a 5-minute walk between your stops. Some steep stairs are required but this excursion is not strenuous. As you soar from tree to tree, experience a bird's-eye view of the rainforest and scenery that cannot be seen from the ground. Duration: 2 hours. Level of difficulty: Moderate.
Note: Sturdy shorts or pants, shoes, bug repellent and sunscreen are required for this adventure.
• The Belize Zoo – This is the best introduction to the animals of Belize, many of which are endangered species such as the Jaribu Stork, Scarlet Macaw, Jaguar, Margay, and black Howler Monkey. The Belize Zoo and Tropical Education Center is set on 29 acres of tropical savanna and exhibits over 150 animals, representing over 45 species, all native to Belize. The zoo keeps animals which were orphaned, rescued or born at the zoo. It also houses rehabilitated animals and those sent to The Belize Zoo as donations from other zoological institutions. Duration: 2-3 hours.
Day 3 - Altun Ha Mayan Temple then on Ambergris Caye
After breakfast, check out of the hotel and board our air-conditioned van for a 1-hour drive to Altun Ha Mayan Temple. Founded around 250 B.C. but with its heyday between 100 and 900 A.D., this ancient Mayan Center was a small but extremely important trading post for the Mayan civilization at the time. You will not find steep hills or sudden drop-offs; instead walk over smooth, well-kept grass and admire all the structures of some of the most majestic Mayan Temples in Central America. On return to the city, we will stop for lunch at the exquisite Biltmore Hotel restaurant for lunch.
This afternoon depart for one of the most exciting islands in Belize—where the clear waters glint in the tropical sun. Enjoy a 90-minute scenic boat ride by a San Pedro Belize Express Water Taxi to the islands, which are also called “cayes” (pronounced “keys”). The Ambergris Caye is the most famous and largest island in Belize. Situated 36 miles from the mainland and known as a world-class snorkeling, diving and fishing destination, this narrow strip of paradise surrounded by the azure Caribbean Sea is approximately 36 miles long and was once a part of the Yucatan Peninsula. It is believed that the Mayans occupied the area over 1500 years ago and dug a narrow channel to separate Ambergris Caye from Mexico. Check-in at the hotel and enjoy the rest of the evening on your own.
Accommodation: The Villas at Banyan Bay (or similar) – 2 nights
Note: You have the option to fly to Ambergris Caye from Belize City for additional cost. The flight is 20 minutes and is $40 for adults and $30 for children. The return flight tickets from Ambergris Caye to Belize Airport are $70 for either adult or children. There are luggage weight restrictions so please inquire at time of booking.
Day 4 - Ambergris Caye Adventures
Today you can choose one of three half-day snorkeling or boating adventures. All snorkeling equipment will be provided, depending on adventure you choose but please bring swimsuit, water shoes and waterproof sunscreen/sunblock. Also provide the shoe size of all persons participating in each excursion.
• Snorkeling at Hol Chan Reserve/Shark Ray Alley – This excursion is one of the most popular diving and snorkeling sites in all of Belize and is located conveniently by boat 15 minutes away from the resort. All levels of diving can be accommodated in the waters that are as shallow as 5 feet. Large schools of jacks, groupers, snappers and barracuda abound. Along each side grow healthy strands of corals and sea grass in shallow water, perfect for the beginner snorkeler. The more experienced swimmer can explore the drop offs over the steep sides of the "cut" and swim among sea grass and sand beds in the middle of the channel. Swim with colorful fish, and if you’re lucky, swim with the sea turtles of Belize. See and be able to pet nurse sharks and sting rays in shark ray alley. Duration: 2-2.5 hours.
• Snorkeling at Mexico Rock/Tres Cocos – Snorkeling Mexico Rock is great and it is only a 20-minute ride from Ambergris Caye. Here you will swim through several types of corals, home to many small, colorful fish. Unlike many of the snorkeling spots in the area that are right on the barrier reef, Mexico Rocks is a star coral patch that is located in the shallow waters midway between the reef and the island. Snorkeling at Mexico Rocks is very shallow, with a maximum depth of only about 12 feet making it an excellent beginner's snorkeling spot. But even experienced snorkelers will find this a great spot, with lots of beautiful corals and soft sponges to check out. Because it is a shallow area, the sun lights everything up, and the good underwater visibility is excellent for taking pictures. Duration: 2-2.5 hours.
• Bottom Boat Adventure/Reef Runner Glass - Non-snorkelers can still see the many colorful varieties of fish, different types of sharks and graceful stingrays from a glass bottom boat. Enjoy a sightseeing tour of the reef in water so clear you can even view sea life from the side of the boat. You can also swim by the boat at Hol Chan where the water is waist deep or sunbathe on the top of the boat. Duration: 2-2.5 hours.
You may also choose to spend today at leisure. Walk, bike or rent a golf cart and explore Ambergris Caye. The town of San Pedro has many little souvenir shops to explore and the locals are very friendly. Or you can just find a quiet spot and lay in a hammock sipping a cold drink. The choice is yours. The night life can be dancing the night away or karaoke with the locals in one of the fine establishments along the beaches. Or feel free to find a secluded beach to watch the sunset and listen to the surf.
Tonight, you will receive a voucher for dinner at Wild Mangos located in an open air-deck. It has a true Caribbean ambience and serves innovative cuisine that is wholly unique. Due to Wild Mangos’ seasonality, you may receive a voucher to another comparable restaurant. Fresh seafood is an island specialty!
Day 5 – Depart Belize
Today we transfer you back to the Belize International Airport for your return home.
Limitations & Restrictions
*Prices are per person based on double occupancy, are subject to availability at time of booking, and may change without notice. Price given based on Feb - Nov 2015 departures; rates for other time periods may be higher. Child rate applies to children 12 years of age and younger sharing a room with two adults. Single supplement may apply. Except for packages including air transportation, unless stated otherwise, airfare, taxes and government fees are not included. Offers valid for new bookings only. Member Benefits are per person and apply to first and second traveler only. Member Benefits are available only with advertised fare and are subject to change without notice. Your travel arrangements may be modified or canceled subject to the travel providers’ policies. Blackout dates and other restrictions may apply. We make every effort for accuracy at time of printing but reserve the right to correct errors. AAA Travel strongly recommends the purchase of trip protection insurance. Except for packages including air transportation, fares may not reflect additional fuel supplement or port charges and vary by provider.
CST #1003968-80. Registration as seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.