Belize City

Destination Location

Belize
Hotel reviews summary
4.0

Our guest rating from 1 reviews

Overview

More than a little bit different. Definitely more than meets the eye and the imagination. That's Belize. And it's the vacation you've been dreaming of.

Beyond the beaten path.

From the lush greens of the rain-forest to the silky soft sands of picture perfect beaches, a vacation in Belize feels absolutely right, and beg the question: why have I waited so long to be right here?

Woman lying on a white sandy beach with palm trees in Belize.

Belize City is becoming one of the fastest growing vacation getaways. You should go - and, we'll be more than happy to fly you there. This Central American country, once known as British Honduras, is located alongside Guatemala and is surrounded by the stunning, crystal clear Caribbean Sea. It's home to the Belize Barrier Reef, the second largest reef in the world. It's no wonder Belize is a must-go place for snorkelling and diving. While most Belizians can speak up to three languages, English is the country's dominant language.

Critters for every kind of animal lover: Belize is best-known for its abundance of whale sharks - and they are completely harmless. Definitely a great place to go whale shark watching. Belize is also home to the world's largest jaguar reserve: Cockscomb Basin Wildlife sanctuary. Also, you may even spot the baird's tapir, the largest land mammal in the region and the country's national animal. And if that's not enough for you, Belize is a birder's paradise. The country is home to almost 600 bird species.

Fascinating archaeological sites: Mexico's not the only place you can visit Mayan ruins. Belize has more than 900 Mayan sites throughout the country, and the Mayan temple Caracol just happens to be the tallest building in the country. Whether you get to a Mayan site via boat, bus or horse, you have days of endless exploring waiting for you.

Belize City, where coffee's coffee and fast food chains don't exist: Belize City greets your morning coffee fix with cafes that are definitely not the typical cookie-cutter caffeine slingers. Travellers are quick to visit Spoonaz Phot Café and Le Petit Café. The city also boasts a wide variety of restaurants to suit just about any taste. However, if you're after some of the best seafood – especially lobster - be sure to get yourself seated at Celebrity Restaurant. And, for the vegetarian and vegan crowd, Happy Cow and Vegan Bites are two very highly recommended spots to hit.

Cave tubing, kayaking and all sorts of eco-touring: Get yourself underground. Literally. Cave tubing is highly popular here and it'll give you that relaxed, subterranean adventure you'll never forget. From kayaking above to diving below and jaguar trekking to ziplining. Belize has everything your inner-adventurist is seeking.

Airport served by: BZE

Destination basics

The seasons in Belize are pretty easy to to remember: wet and dry. Whatever time of year you decide to go, you're sure to have a great time. The warmest months are May to September and days reach an average temperature of 27 °C (81 °F). With the coolest months being November to January and an average temperature of 23 °C (75 °F).

Average monthly temperature and average monthly rainfall diagrams for Belize City
From a celebrated Mayan history to a brush with colonial forces, Belize City's intertwining cultures have a lasting effect on those who visit. Once the historical capital of its country, the shift in power from Belize City to the neighboring Belmopan has hardly diluted its colorful character. This is evident from its bustling streets that demand attention, its flamboyant Caribbean culture, riveting seascapes and stunning colonial architecture. Despite being subject to nature's wrath in the form of Hurricane Hattie in 1961, the city has displayed incredible resilience by jumping back to its feet and resuming life the only way it knows - with full force and abandon.

The city embraces the Caribbean Sea, thus making it the country's vital port. Belize City's Haulover Creek cuts through the metropolis before spilling over into the sea. Over the creek, the famous Swing Bridge holds the city's North and South sides together, each side bringing to the fore a distinct personality.

Fort George
Its proximity to the Caribbean Sea makes Fort George one of the most handsome and affluent neighborhoods in the city. This is where the city's most luxurious hotels and resorts are located, alongside privately owned colonial houses that manage to attract a second look each time you pass them. You will also find some hint of nightlife in this part of the city, with a number of hotel bars and lounges located steps away from each other. Fort George is home to the city's picturesque promenade overlooking the dreamy waters of the Caribbean, as also to the historic Baron Bliss Lighthouse located on the far eastern tip of the city. Other attractions in the Fort George neighborhood include Memorial Park and the Belize Tourism Village.

Old Town/Downtown
Not to be confused with the Old Belize park that lies outside the city, Belize City's Old Town forms the heart of this frenzied city. The city's major museums - the Maritime Museum and the Museum of Belize are located here. The city center is also home to local vendors and small businesses.

New Town Barracks
Also located on the north side of the city, this street runs parallel to the Caribbean Sea, providing calming vistas of the ocean. A few public parks are also located on the seaside promenade that comprises of a handful of restaurants and bars.

Financial District
The other side of the bridge lives in a more down-to-earth dimension compared to its affluent northern counterpart, mainly consisting of offices, banks, and a few budget accommodations for travelers on a shoestring budget. On the sightseeing front, there is quite a bit to explore around in this neighborhood, with the Supreme Court, the Battlefield Park, the Government House and St John's Cathedral, all situated in close proximity to one another.

Outlying Areas
Providing a nice break from the chaotic pace of Belize City are the small islands of Caye Caulker and Ambergris Caye, located off the Caribbean coast. Day trips from Belize City are possible to these towns via the San Pedro Ferry. Here, visitors will find ample opportunity to kick back and relax with a cocktail. These islands also provide easy accessibility to the Belize Barrier Reefs, inviting snorkeling opportunities. Other activities include sailing, kayaking, scuba diving and manatee-spotting.
Although it is short on conventional forms of entertainment, Belize City has a lot to offer in terms of culture, history and the outdoors.

Museums & Galleries
Museums, such as the Museum of Belize and the House of Culture Museum, offer interesting insights into the city's history and culture. Browse through colorful Mayan exhibits at the Museum of Belize, where a riveting history lesson is certain. The Maritime Museum, located on North Front Street, outlines the city's history as a center for shipbuilding, and documents how it came to be the country's vital port. Belize's art mainly focuses on local artwork and installations, available for study at the Image Factory gallery near the city's Water Taxi Terminal. Ardent art lovers who are willing to take a slightly longer trip to San Pedro and Caye Caulker will stumble upon galleries such as Belizean Arts and the Caribbean Colors Art Gallery, where earthy Mayan art is displayed.

Historic Sites
The Altun Ha ruins are one of the closest Mayan ruins from Belize City, offering a fascinating tour of the ancient city founded in BC 900. Closer to the mainland, the historic St. John's Cathedral stands as testimony to the Britishers' influence on the city's architecture and religion.


Performing Arts
The Bliss Centre for the Performing Arts hosts a multitude of performances throughout the year, from dance and concerts, to plays and festivals. The pièce de résistance of this center is its impressively built 600-seat theater.

Outdoors
Belize with its favorable closeness to the Caribbean Sea is a thriving adventure hotspot. Engage in thrilling cave-tubing experiences along the Belize River, while those with affinity for great heights can explore their ziplining tours. Water lovers can take the ferry to Caye Caulker for memorable snorkeling and diving adventures that will let them appreciate Belize's beautiful coral reefs. For more family oriented adventures, look up the Old Belize Adventure park located a little outside the city. This comprehensive entertainment park hosts a museum, an amusement park and a beach in its premises, promising fun-filled times.
Belizean cuisine comprises of a strong Creole-Caribbean influence, governed by seafood specialties and locally available ingredients. From modest rice and beans, to the elaborate conch curry, and from hole-in-the-wall eateries to harborside restaurants, Belize's restaurants serve some of the best that Central America has to offer. Its Mayan influence does not go unnoticed either, with the occasional Mexican restaurant serving up splendid ceviche and tamales.

Downtown
The city center in Belize features top culinary picks, especially if you are looking for a relaxed ambiance and unrushed service in this fast-paced city. The Riverside Tavern is among Belize's best, known for its burgers, chili dogs, and chilled out vibe. The view of the boats along Belize's harbor is an added bonus. On Daly Street, Nerie's popular quarters serve excellent Cassava Pudding - a Caribbean baked specialty. Those who prefer a more elegant dining ambiance can head to the Celebrity Restaurant, touted also as one of the most romantic restaurants in Belize. The restaurant serves varied seafood dishes, and a mix of Mexican and Caribbean cuisines alongside choice libations.

Southside
The Southside of Haulover Creek hosts only a handful of decent restaurants. Start out by gorging on Dario's superb meat pies at the nondescript bakery on Hyde Street. Head to King's Street for Creole-inspired Stew Chicken, and Johnny Cakes at Dit's. For dinner, the Bird's Isle Restaurant on Albert Street is a fantastic choice to enjoy Belizean cuisine, with sweeping views of the Caribbean Sea.

New Town Barracks
Along Barracks Road, the waterside BTL Park is home to quite a few watering holes in the city. The Thirsty Thursdays bar offers top-notch happy hour choices, besides hosting karaoke nights. Located along the pier is the more picturesque Pier I Bar & Grill that overlooks the sea. Stop by here for hot tamales and chilled beer. This neighborhood also consists of establishments such as the seafood specialist Club Calypso, and Sumathi, a lovely restaurant serving authentic Indian food.

Fort George
Home to the city's most glitzy hotels, the Fort George has an unmistakably elite air about its culinary tenants as well. The Wet Lizard is one of the more popular watering holes here, dishing out a wonderful combination of Coconut Shrimp and local brews. On Cork Street, the Smoky Mermaid is one of the city's top-billed restaurants for regional cuisine. Set up in a stately colonial mansion, the restaurant offers calming sea views, alongside specialties such as Conch Curry and Banana Chimichanga. In case you plan to start your day early, head to the Le Petit Cafe where a hearty breakfast of hot pockets and fresh cinnamon buns awaits you.

Belize City

Country: Belize

Belize City by the Numbers

Population: 57,169
Elevation: 0 meters / 0 feet
Average Annual Precipitation: 23.59 centimeters / 9.29 inches
Average January Temperature: 27°C / 80.6°F
Average July Temperature: 31°C / 87.8°F

Quick Facts

Electricity: 110 volts, 60Hz, AC

Time Zone: GMT-6; Central Standard Time (CST)

Country Dialing Code: +501

Area Code: 2

Did You Know?

Belize City was the former capital of the nation of Belize.

The city of Belize was hit by Hurricane Hattie in 1961, and again by Hurricane Earl in 2016.

Orientation

Belize City is the largest city in the nation of Belize in Central America. It is located 81.4 kilometers (50.6 miles) from Belmopan, the current capital city of Belize.

Previously recognized as Holzuz, an ancient Mayan village, Belize first invited British settlers in 1638. The first British settlers comprised of lumberjacks and seamen who needed to establish a port for shipping mahogany and logs along inland water bodies. Belize was a favorable port, and thus spurred the foundation of Belize Town.

The initial years of settlement were fraught with dramatic episodes during which the Spanish disputed the British for the territory, ultimately conceding to the latter in the Battle of St. George's Caye. The onset of the British settlement also meant the trickling in of several African slaves, known as Creoles, who were employed by the British.

Eventually, the Belizeans overthrew the British in 1981, declaring independency. However, the city of Belize still seems to carry the shadow of its former past, as can be seen from its Anglican churches, colonial mansions, and street names.

Departing from:

^Total price one-way per guest. See terms and conditions.

*Prices are per guest, based on double occupancy and are limited; may not reflect real-time pricing or availability. See terms and conditions.

Explore our world.

or find your dream vacation with our Vacation Finder

Belize