Our second port of call was in Belize City, Belize. Welcome to Central America! How exciting!
Except not really.
We may have gotten really lucky with our excursion in Cozumel, but our “private island beach getaway” in Belize meant that we were directed away from the mainland, towards a private, man-made island for about 4 hours. It also rained on and off for most of the morning.
Ok, ok, I’m painting a bit of a terrible picture here. I was in Belize, after all!
Belize is known for its immense barrier reef, protected by its government. Our ship had to dock in the middle of the ocean and we were assigned numbers to embark a smaller boat that would bring us to wherever we needed to go (in our case, private island). It was another really awesome view of our ship! In retrospect, I kind of wish we’d chosen to snorkel the barrier reef, but I was nervous about not being able to enjoy it because of my terrible eyesight.
My day, for the most part, looked like this. The beer was very cheap on the island so we took full advantage (alcohol on the ship? More expensive than I realized!) and I definitely got some excellent reading done with the peace and quiet.
The island itself didn’t have anything super exciting to it. It was a lot of trees and some huts along the coast that we didn’t go to. There was a lunch resto/bar where we had lunch included in our afternoon, although somehow the extra 10$ I paid on my excursion ticket wasn’t even covered by the prices on the menu (my meal was so-so, and cost something like 7$). There was a complimentary punch rum that came with it, but I could barley take two sips of it. One of my favorite drinks, but it tasted a lot like Pine Sol.
When we got back to our boat, we quickly changed out of our bathing suits and made it on another boat heading towards the mainland. We had close to two hours or so left, but unfortunately the port of Belize was more underwhelming than a morning on the beach. Luckily we uncovered the chocolate cafe where we had some AMAZING chocolate, bought some Belizean chocolate bars, as well as a chocolate milkshake. Definitely the highlight of our stop! Again, the shopping was very expensive and souvenirs not all that exciting. We didn’t buy anything except the edible kind!
We had another very quiet evening on the boat- nothing very exciting was going on so we decided to catch a comedy show before calling it a day and heading to our room. I’m so lucky to have a ridiculous best friend that’s as crazy as I am. We ended up relaxing in our state room and we got caught with the worst case of the giggles EVER.
Next up: Mahogany Bay, Honduras!
The minute we pulled up into the port of Mahogany Bay, I knew I was going to love this infinitely more than yesterday. There were shipwrecks in the water which we later found out were very real, but had been around for so long they had become a part of their coral reef which was again, protected by their government. Our tour in Honduras was a two-parter: we would be touring Gumbalimba Park, a national park and home to many of their native animals, and then we’d spend a few hours on the beautiful Tabyana Beach.
We wandered around the park a bit before ending up at this rickety bridge that crossed above a big swamp. I have an almost paralyzing fear of heights, and apparently we had to cross to get to the best part. We’d be hanging out with monkeys! Apparently there was a “chicken’s crossing” but I sucked it up and followed all the big kids across this one
We crossed through the parrot’s home and nesting area. They were all super friendly and didn’t dig their claws into your skin the way I remember from past experiences. I love birds so this was a lot of fun for me. although poor travel BFF hates them with a passion. Luckily she stuck around to take photos, since I’d left my camera behind. It was raining on and off!
We finally arrived to the monkey’s home, at which point I had to spend most of the time without glasses on because there was the risk that the monkeys might come and steal them, ha! There was a complete downpour as we arrived so we were all completely drenched, but I must admit it made the experience that much more amazing. We were in the middle of a jungle, a rainstorm, playing with monkeys. Crazy!
I was nervous at first, but quickly got used to them jumping around. I figured out how to call them up to my shoulder, although I got quite the surprise when one of them fell in love with my curly hair and messed it up, ha
Afterwards, we continued driving to Tabyana beach, where we spent about 2 hours or so. The water was crystal clear, and it was so warm out! It was barely 10am for them (just after lunch for us) and already so, so hot outside.
The island is quite small so our drive also meant we got to tour most of the island. I was amazed by life on the island of Roatan; there is no speed limit on their one, single road on the island. The smallness of the island also means they have very little to no crime, because there is just about nowhere to hide! The people there are SO nice and humble, and the scenery is to die for. I could easily imagine myself visiting this part of Central America again. They had some really beautiful hotels and access to the mainland to visit more of Honduras if we wanted.
We ended up watching BOTH showings of the hypnotist, Asad Mecci. He was AMAZING and we literally laughed ourselves into tears both times. The great part about having “your own time” dining was that we got to choose our schedules each night. We didn’t eat until pretty late that night, but it was sooooo worth it. I would totally check out another one of his shows in the future if I could!
Overall, Honduras made up for Belize ten times over. It was SUCH a wicked experience and a beautiful day. Even the rain couldn’t get our spirits down. We were back on a cruising-high, and very excited to see what Grand Cayman had in store for us in the morning!