This was definitely my favorite stop of the trip. We anchored pretty far away from shore since Belize is surrounded by tons of little islands (most of them were just featured on the Bachelor). We were tendered (taken by smaller boats) into the Belize City port where we met up with our cave tubing group. From what I could tell there really aren’t many beaches close to the city port – which is one reason I’m glad we decided on the cave tubing excursion. If you are looking to travel to the exotic beaches of Belize I would definitely stay off the mainland and visit places like Turneffe Island or Lighthouse Reef (home to the infamous Great Blue Hole, as seen on the Bachelor).
Anyway, after getting on the bus it was about an hour long drive to the cave tubing site.
During the ride we heard about Belize’s history and all of the buildings in the city. Most of Belize is underdeveloped and below what Americans would consider the poverty line. In the King’s Park area, homes are an average of $85,000 USD and in order to afford a home at this price you have to be very, very wealthy (hence the name King’s Park). The picture below is of a beautiful house (well, I’m actually not certain it’s one single house) in that neighborhood. It was the nicest I saw, by far! Pretty crazy to think that only $85,000 would buy you a mansion in Belize.
Here was another large house in the same area, but not so beautiful on the outside.
This is what their speed bump sign looks like – so funny! There definitely aren’t two humps in the bump so kind of funny to use that image.
It was so interesting to learn about their culture and history. The native language in Belize is English, but a different dialect called Kriole (pronounced creole). But not like you would hear in New Orleans – it’s much, much different. Our tour guides would talk to us fluently in English, and you could understand them perfectly. But when talking to each other they could automatically turn on the Kriole just like that and you couldn’t understand a word they were saying. I mean they are speaking English still, but such a different broken (for lack of a better word) version that it was too hard to understand. Here are a few pictures of our wonderful tour guides.
We did have quite a hike to get to the start of the tour (since you float back south on the tubes). We learned a lot about the plants in the rainforest. We even saw a baby pineapple. Who knew they take 9 months to grow!
Here is Evan and I on a hike break before entering the caves.
The whole group before the caves.
Finally we got to the cave site! Evan and I were in the front of our group’s tube train, which was awesome because you could hear the tour guide really well. We didn’t take many pictures once we were inside the caves, because it was so incredibly dark. We all turned off our headlamps at one point and you literally couldn’t see your own hand in front of your face. It was kind of scary, especially since there were bats flying at the top of some parts. And I hate bats. Below you can see how dark it was. Without a light shining towards the walls you couldn’t see them.
After the tour the guides took us to a place where we ate a home-cooked meal. It was pretty yummy too! We got back to the port right at 4pm, which is when we were supposed to be on the very last tender. I was freaking out a little, because I thought we would miss it. But, we made it. Thank goodness.
After getting back on the ship we watched as we weaved through all of the islands to get out into deeper waters, and we saw this quaint little island. I had to zoom in all the way so it’s blurry. But it’s definitely what you would think of when you hear “stranded island”. And Evan wants to move there apparently? I don’t think I could handle it for more than a week…maybe not even that long!
And then we watched a beautiful sunset to end the day!