We had all our meals here at the Lodge’s lovely restaurant, with a thatch roof and sides open to the fresh (if often damp) air. During the day you get great views of the surrounding trees and the birdlife, while at night there is candlelight and flaming torches at the entrance, giving everything a warm glow. The décor reflects local culture and the floors are tiled (and a bit slippery when wet – be careful!)
Favorite Dish: Breakfasts were included in our package and there was a good choice every morning – always a continental platter (fruit and muffins) and a daily special, as well as all the usual. My choices included banana pancakes with fresh fruit, omelette and huevos rancheros – all were very good.
At lunchtime there is an extensive menu of lighter options and full meals. Among our choices were the burgers (fish for me, “Happy Cow” for Chris), an excellent chicken curry wrap, quesadilla and a cheese and ham sandwich. Our beverage of choice was the Belizean Lighthouse Beer, and a typical price for two mains and two beers was in the region of $30.
Dinner is quite an affair here. There is an á la carte menu but few people seemed to opt for that, ourselves included. Instead we went for the daily set four course menu which starts with a complementary amuse bouche and then has a limited choice of (usually) two starters, three or four mains and a dessert special (although the a la carte options could be substituted for this). This menu always aims to blend local ingredients with international favourites. The chef is actually from neighbouring Guatemala and is clearly passionate about his work – he came round the tables regularly to chat to guests, as did the owner Mike.
The quality was very good on the whole, although one or two dishes disappointed us. The best of the starters included some tasty soups (tomato, consommé) and a cauliflower salad; my favourite main course was a steak cooked with Argentinean style spicy sauce; and the best of the desserts the Key Lime Pie. Prices weren’t cheap but were OK considering the quality, the very good service and the fact that we were a “captive audience” with no real choice but to eat there.
Mr Greedy's You might find yourself visiting Greedy's every day until you hit your personal pizza wall. Fantastic pizzas will have you calling them to deliver even when you get back home. They offer free wi-fi to customers. Located on Burns Ave.
Favorite Dish: Fantastic BBQ Chicken pizzas!!
Great secluded place off the main street, it's a little difficult to find but it's well worth the hunt. Service is a little slow but the food is excellent and fresh.
We ordered a tomato, mozzarella and pineapple sandwich, and quesadillas for lunch. Food prepared while we waited, and the aroma wafted from the kitchen to entice us. There are computer stations with internet connection for a modest fee, and a sitting area with comfy sofas to relax while you read some of the news and articles they have on legalizing marijuana....!
The cuisine is largely vegan or vegetarian, but they do offer a few chicken selections. (No pork or beef, though). Juices are also excellent.
Favorite Dish: Try the freshly made sandwiches!
Running W Steakhouse is located the the San Ignacio Resort Hotel, a premier 5-star resort. They offer the only A/C bar & grill in town. We chose to sit outdoors on the patio, which overlooks the Macaw River, the city of San Ignacio, and the gorgeous pool and deck below.
Running W Steakhouse is considered the premier restaurant in this area. They serve the best steaks in Belize, direct from the beef producer of the same name. They offer good seafood and many traditional dishes.
We tried the sampler platter for an appetizer, made from fresh ingredients, and they were simply delicious. We also recommend Tenderloins Galore, which was beef and pork tenderloins.
The photo shows the first view of the Trek Stop you will get as you ascend the stairs from the parking lot area. Behind the outdoor seating area of the restaurant (right side) is a small kitchen where the meals are prepared for guests. This area is part of the larger Educational building to the left, which houses a number of interesting exhibits, displays and inter-active activities geared to educating all about the geology, history, plants, animals and insects native to Belize. One of the three free-internet access computers at the Trek Stop is also located in this building. The restaurant hours are from 7 AM to 7 PM and it is basically a 'one-woman' show! One of the two friendly Belizian cooks who alternate here will take your order from either their standard menu or their Specials of the day. Depending on what it is, she may have to make a short trip to the Common Area (see my Accommodations tips) just up the pathway to retrieve some frozen ingrediants from the freezer located there.
Favorite Dish: The restaurant has a good menu selection of various American, Mexican and Belizian type dishes - ranging from steaks, chilis, quesadillas, sandwiches and so on. It is a very informal and pleasant place to eat and interact with the other patrons staying at the Trek Stop. Some of the meals we enjoyed were:
- 'American' - scrambled eggs, bacon and toast (US$4) with coffee and fresh orange juice (the first 'fresh' one we had had in 2 weeks)
- French toast with syrup and bacon (US$3.50)
- Toasted Ham & Cheese sandwiches (US$2)
- Tuna sandwiches
- Cheeseburger with or without fries
- Vegetarian Delight (US$5) - a pasta covered in vegetarian tomato sauce with Parmesan, Garlic bread & Garden Salad Vinagrette
- Large bowl of Chili with a corn biscuit (US$3)
- BLT sandwich
For alcoholic drinks, Belikin beer seemed to be the favoured brand (US$1.50 each) and you can actually bring your own from the separate 'Common Area' building.
On our first trip into San Ignacio, we had done enough wandering under the hot noon sun and decided that it was time to sit down somewhere cool. We had heard that the two best restaurants in town were Hannah's and Cafe Sol, so as soon as we spotted the Sol, we headed in to check it out.
We immediately liked it's large treed front lot, with a number of tropical birds flitting about making the appropriate jungle noises. That combined with the large shaded front patio area was enough for us, so we sat down and had a look at the menu, and we were not in any rush in these circumstances.
Favorite Dish: Things just kept getting better and better as we both grabbed cold Belikin beers (US$3.50 for two) while we checked out our options. The entire menu looked great, with an amazing assortment of either local dishes or those with an international touch to them. We decided to get something to take away so ordered a Chicken Curry Wrap - cooked in a coconut-based curry sauce, with rice and topped with chutney and yoghurt (US$3.50). I could not beleive how big it was for the price, and we thoroughly enjoyed it when we soon arrived back at our accommodations!
I just wish that we had spent more time in San Ignacio to properly sample what Cafe Sol had to offer.
Located up the pathway between the Trek Stop Restaurant/Educational building and the actual accommodations is the Common Area. This building was the main spot for congregation and interaction between the various residents (see 'Accommodations' for more details) and it also contained a kitchen area for use by the residents. It was equipped with a freezer, refigerator, stove, sink, counters, cutlery and dishes - so it was possible to prepare your own meals here if you wished.
Favorite Dish: The Trek Stop brought in cases of Belikin beers and stored them at the owners house. A case was always left under the sink and bottles could be put into the fridge or freezer by the guests to chill them before use. Any time a resident wanted to have a beer, they just put a check-mark beside their name on a sheet of paper tacked onto the wall - the honour system. At the end of your stay, this was tallied up as part of your bill at US$1.50 per beer.
We had done some shopping at a small nearby supermarket (see 'Shopping') so sometimes had a breakfast here of granola and yoghurt or slices of fresh pineapple from the San Ignacio market, or even some left-over banana bread that we had bought in Belmopan a few days before arriving here. It was also a good place to mix a few sundowner drinks of the local rum or munch on Pringles chips while on the two free internet computers located here. All this in the wonderful tropical warmth with green surroundings - it was great!
I took the picture of Rose's because of the name. It advertises Belkin which is the beer of Belize.
Most of the time, we ate at Clarissa Falls - we had all our breakfasts and dinners there. But our travel agent recommended that we get a softside cooler to carry materials for lunch, especially going up to Mountain Pine Ridge. So we did that, and it proved to be a very excellent suggestion.
We arrived in San Ignacio on March 8th after we had a picnic lunch at the Blue Hole National Park.
Favorite Dish: On March 9th we had lunch at the Tropical Wings Nature Center. We had egg salad sandwiches (and she made the egg salad while we watched) which cost us BZ$5.75 We also got Sprite and cookies for BZ$2.75.
The following day, we had lunch up at Hidden Valley at 1000 Foot Falls. We could have bought stuff to eat up there, but we ate our own food because we were leaving soon and wanted to eat it up before we went across the border.
San Ignacio is quite tourist oriented and therefore has many restaurants to choose from, all are very reasonably priced. You shouldn't pay more than $10 US for a meal.
I'll list a few of my favourite places here...
Favorite Dish: Cafe Sol was my choice for breakfast. They have a wonderful granola served with fruit and yogurt and excellent iced coffee. I also had dinner here once, the place was packed. I enjoyed a huge chicken parmesan sandwich and fries for only $5US.
I can recommend the pizza at Erva's, that with a juice only cost $7.50US.
I also had a very good curry chicken at Serendib for $7.50 as well.
Mile 6 Cristo Rey Road, San Ignacio, 000000, Belize
Good for: Business
Negroman Road, San Ignacio, Belize
Good for: Business
Mile 69 1/4 Benque Viejo Road, San Ignacio, Belize
Good for: Business