Belize, Guatemala · 11 Days · 8 Moments · March 2018

Tessa's adventure in Belize

18 March 2018

Yesterday, we got up early to watch the sunrise- it was a little cloudy, so not too visible but still pretty. We then went around to take some pictures on the beach, and enjoyed our last breakfast at Jaguar Reef. After leaving the hotel, we stopped and learned how to make chocolate the Maya way, which involved grinding cacao beans- we all enjoyed that part as we took turns grinding. Once our chocolate tour was over, we headed toward Belize City. We made a couple of stops along the way at gifts shops and a local tamale stand, where we were all treated to a tamale. Our farewell dinner then took place that evening at our hotel. We cooked our own food on a little hot stone (I had chicken) and closed the night out with some dancing and hugs goodbye. Today, I fly home. While of course I’m sad to leave, I had an amazing time and made a lot of good friends who I know I’ll be keeping in touch with. It’s about to be a long day of travel- DC here I come!

16 March 2018

Well, the past couple of days have been pretty chill. Yesterday, we had a free day so a couple of us kayaked in the ocean early in the morning, which was hard at first because the waves were intense but definitely fun and worth it. The rest of the day, we spent hanging out at the pool, playing volleyball, and grabbing dinner at a local restaurant (their ceviche was on point). Today, we spent the morning snorkeling which was fun, but we didn’t see much. We did see a barracuda at one point, which was sweet. Then, we rode into town on bikes and stopped at a couple shops, picking up some souvenirs and smoothies. Tonight, we grabbed dinner at a different local joint, which was also pretty good. It’s sad that tomorrow is our last full day, but it should be fun. We’re waking up early to watch the sunrise, so sleep here I come!

14 March 2018

Today was our last morning in San Ignacio. We stopped by a local fruit market to pick up some goodies, and then headed on to cave tubing and zip lining. We started off cave tubing. We took a hike through the jungle with our tubes, and then floated downstream, through a cave and seeing sweet stalagmites and stalactites. We got to jump off some high rocks and swim around for a bit. After stopping for a quick lunch break, we geared up to go zip lining. Overall, their were 6 lines that we went down, and hit up to 40 mph at one of them. I had never been zip lining before, so this was super fun. After that, we loaded up for a 3 hr drive to Hopkins where we will be for the next few days. Our hotel suite is absolutely beautiful, and we’re basically beach front. Tomorrow, we have a free day so we’ll see what happens!

13 March 2018

Today, we crossed the border to Guatemala to visit Tikal! It was super neat being able to see all the architecture what the Mayans had created. We hiked the jungle and climbed pyramids and temples for about three hours. At the end, we got to see (and hear) some howler monkeys jumping around in some trees which was pretty neat. There were also a couple local market stands that we got to peruse and pick up some Knick-knacks. Travel time to and back was about two hours, so we spent quite a bit of time in the car, though that was good for me to catch up on sleep and watch the beautiful scenery around me- more than once we saw stray pigs crossing the road (not something you see everyday-or any day-in Virginia). Dinner was chill, and now I’m off to bed to rest up for zip lining and cave tubing tomorrow!

12 March 2018

This post is coming a little late, but yesterday we went snorkeling in “The Secret Spot” (not so secret since there were probably 10 other boats there). A highlight was getting to see a giant sea turtle, and some stingrays! We also saw some sharks, though weren’t in the water when that happened. We had a fun evening out celebrating our last night in Ambergris Caye- there was a DJ competition going on, so we got to listen to some fun music and dance as well. I probably won’t give another update for today, as it was mainly a travel day (1.5hr boat ride, 2hr bus ride). Tomorrow we visit Guatemala!

10 March 2018

This morning, we packed up and left our hotel, heading to a black howler monkey sanctuary which was SO NEAT. We got to see a whole family of monkeys (including babies!!!) right up close. We also got to hear the alpha monkey howl- I can definitely understand where they got their name from. We then droves bit to board a ferry this afternoon, which has brought us to Ambergris Caye. We grabbed lunch, soaked up a little sun, and headed into town for dinner. A bit of a chillax day. Tomorrow morning we go snorkeling, so I’m off to bed!

9 March 2018

Taking advantage of some down time to post a little earlier today. This morning, we enjoyed a typical Belizean breakfast, with eggs, beans, sausage, and bread (which was almost like a sopaipilla and DELICIOUS). We then boarded a speed boat and drove ~1 hr to the Maya ruins in Lamanai. On our way there, we got to see a baby crocodile, some bats, Belize’s smallest owl, a Mennonite village, and the “Jesus Christ bird” (it looks like it walks on water which is pretty cool). When we first arrived at the ruins, just about all we could hear were howler monkeys galore, though I unfortunately didn’t actually get to see any. We walked around the ruins, and hiked up 4 or 5 temples before making our way back to the boat. After lunch, my roommates and some other friends hung out and played a couple rounds of Exploding Kittens. Now, we’re waiting for dinner and our official “meet and greet” with the team. So far so good!!! Having a great (and safe- don’t worry Mom) time!

8 March 2018

Today was a LONG day- started at 5:30 leaving for the airport (after not getting any sleep), and after flying through Houston, I arrived at Belize around 3pm! It’s been a pretty chill evening, just meeting and chatting with the people who are here, and enjoying a delicious dinner together. Looking forward to my first full day tomorrow- lots of pics to come!