People arriving by cruise ship currently have to tender to get into port. What that means, for those who are not familiar with the term, is that instead of walking off and walking back on the ship, you have to take a smaller boat to get into the port. There were 5 or 6 large cruise ships in the day we came in but the tender process was still efficient, the large ferry type boats held at least 100 people and we were able to get off the boat on the 1st tender which took about 15-20 minutes to get into the docks. Belize will likely always be a tender port, the large ships can't get any closer because of the reef. There are several terminals at the dock area but even if you should forget which one you come in at it's still easy to find your tender back.
It is best to find other people or a group to go to Altun Ha and rent a van. There are many independent tour guides in Belize. This will cut down your cost to get there. It cost $45.00 per person to go to Altun Ha and there are about 12-16 passengers in a van. Make sure to find a van that is airconditioned. It takes at least two hours to go to Altun Ha and if it gets hot in the van with 12-16 people.
The drive to Altun Ha was very long but it was great to us because we can see some parts of Belize. We passed by swampy lands and forest.
Our driver was also our tour guide. He knew the history of Altun Ha and as he walked us through the grounds of this ancient ruins.
When it was time to leave Caye Caulker, heading for San Pedro on Ambergris Cay, I walked across the beach from our hotel to buy our water taxi tickets (US$10 each, credit cards accepted) for the 10 AM departure, giving us plenty of time to pack our backpacks for the short ride. It was not long before our departure time that we were standing at the end of the wharf with the other passengers waiting for the incoming craft. Upon boarding, the crew stowed the various backpacks under the seats and down a hatch inside the cabin while we grabbed a couple of seats just at the edge of the cabin in case it was a rough crossing. They have life-jackets aboard (check out the front window!) but none were required to be worn.
We were soon underway on what turned out to be a choppy sea, with the 3x200 HP outboard engines powering us along quite nicely. The 35 minute run to San Pedro stayed on the leeward-side of the coastal barrier reef to shelter us from the worst of the waves of the Caribbean Sea, so the ride was quite comfortable. As always on this vacation, the crossing time passed quickly as we compared notes with the other travellers and their adventures. The second photo shows a view from inside a second water taxi, three days later as we made another run all the way to Belize City - our island hopping days were over! The final photo shows the busy Water Taxi Terminal beside the yellow Swing Bridge in Belize City.
If you get the chance, be sure to take a water taxi ride at least once - they are fun, fast and cheap!
Almost 2 weeks later, at the end of our trip, we returned to Belize City for one night. This photo shows the mini-van shuttle that brought us from San Ignacio, 72 miles away on the Guatemala border. We had spent a week there, based at a great lodgings called the Trek Stop, and they had a planned run into the city for an airport pickup, allowing us to tag along for US$15 each. This was a great deal because we had planned to take the Express bus, which would have been much slower and would have cost US$6 each. The shuttle dropped us off directly at our Seaside Guesthouse accommodations.
Mini-vans similar to this are quite often used as taxis in the city, and we used them twice for in-city rides and twice more to get to the International Airport in Ladyville (once to pick up our rental SUV and again on our final day in Belize). We had a great driver for our final ride to the airport (the standard US$25 rate for the two of us) - the same guy who had picked us up in town the day before. He had given us his card to call him for our drive to the airport and waived the $3 charge for our in-town ride. Give him a try if you get the chance (see below).
We came in to Belize on American Airlines. If you are going to have to be somewhere in Belize by a certain date, it might be a good idea to fly in a day in advance so you can deal with any snafus. Book as early as possible to get the best rate and try not to have a lot of connections to make. Especially if you book early, reconfirm about a week prior to departure, and when you get to Belize, reconfirm your departure flight.
In addition to American, you can fly to Belize on Continental, US Airways (U.S.), or Grupo Taca (El Salvador).
Continental flies out of Houston, American has flights out of Miami and Dallas, US Airways flies out of Charlotte. Taca flies out of Houston, Miami, Washington D.C., Los Angeles, and San Francisco. I prefer AA of course because my daughter is a pilot for them.
You will land at the International Airport which is - like most of larger airports - not in Belize City.
Our Trek Stop accommodations, just outside the hamlet of San Jose de Succotz, was very conveniently located for visiting the Mayan ruins at Xunantunich - a short 15 minute walk along the main highway toward Guatemala brought us to this scenic ferry crossing. This hand-cranked affair crosses back and forth over the Mopan River, providing the only access to Xunantunich since this site was opened to the public in 1954. The single operator winches the the ferry back and forth for both cars and pedestrians as they turn up on one side of the river or the other (second photo).
I had a good talk with him as we crossed on our 8:30 AM walk to the ruins, and he pointed out a very large Green Iguana (they can reach 7-feet in length) to me, as it lay out over the river on a tree branch, warming up in the morning sunshine. Tourists taking kayak tours on the Mopan (and ourselves as well on our tubing ride) have to keep an eye out here as they pass the ferry but it is not difficult since the aerial cable used to winch the ferry is plenty high above the water level. I gave the ferry operator $BZ2 (US$1) for his efforts on our short crossings here.
for longer distances inside belize choose local airlines
either tropic airways or maya airlines
both are same safe, comfortable, good quality for its econocmic price and you get great view from the planes..the local airport look simple but very easy to checkin.-.and absolut safe
if you need quick personalized and fair priced from belize to mexico or to belize
owner henry menzies is very friendly and helpful and tries to find successful solution to any passengers wishes
The least expensive way to get around Belize on a day to day basis is by bus.
Bus travel to Belize from the US border cities via Cancun, Mexico City and Chetumal is comfortable, relatively fast, and inexpensive.
Safe and regular bus connections from Guatemala City are another reasonable and exciting way to get to Belize.
One www.guidetobelizee.info you can find all Bus Schedules and Contact
by using the Bus Topic.
Have a save trip
From Belize Adrian
"At ease in Belize"
Life is like a breeze
The water taxi from Belize City to Caye Caulker and San Pedro is quick and convenient. The fare is B$17 one way and B$34 return. The small power boats depart from the Marine Terminal in Belize City. The trip from Belize City to Caye Caulker takes 45 mins and to San Pedro it takes 1½ hours. Not all the seats are covered so you will need sun block.
Belize City - Caye Caulker & San Pedro 8 am -- 10:30 am -- 12 pm -- 1:30 pm -- 4.30 pm
San Pedro - Caye Caulker & Belize City 7 am -- 10:30 am -- 1 pm -- 2:30 pm -- 3:30 pm
From Placencia, there is a ferry directly to Honduras. The boat leaves Placencia, Belize every Friday at 9:30am, and returns from Honduras to Placencia, Belize on Monday. That is a direct connection across the Bay of Honduras, bypassing Puerto Barrios in Guatemala. It is about a 2-hour boat ride, give or take.
The fare is $50 US per person.
Not sure you will find a bus company based in Belize offering services on the net, although there are loads of forums that will point out the best on, there are excursions that go from San Ignacio into Guatemala.
We had trouble trying to find out about public transport, we had to just go to the relevant bus depot and ask.
good luck and hope you have fun.
I have taken the Batty Bus Service ( in jamaican patois Batty means something else, but the service was started by a Mr Batty from Belize!).. go through immigration, cross the bridge and go on to Corazol and then down to Belize City. once you are in chetumal you might be able to arrange bus trip plus a hotel in belze..
Bus travel in Belize leaves much to be desired. The buses are of the old school bus variety. They are very uncomfortable and crowded. About the best that can be said for them is that they do run their routes frequently enough that there is little trouble in getting from point to point. They also quite affordable to use. Part of the problem here is that the roads in Belize are not up to international standards hence are very bumpy. Another problem I had was people often bring along all kinds of personal items with them on the bus. I nearly crushed some fellows large banana tree well getting off one bus. Finally, the buses are in a sad state of repair. One bus I road on blew a tire and we had to stop while it was changed. I did meet plenty of local traveling this way but on a whole there is alot of room for improvement here.
You will need a car if you want to have your freedom on the mainland. They tell you the roads are bad, but you have no idea how bad they are. At one point, and I wish I had taken a picture of this, the road we were driving up looked like when a bunch of rocks slide down the side of a mountain. They are almost undriveable. That said, I now have a story to tell and it was a bit of an adventure before it got old.
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Negroman Road, San Ignacio, Belize
Good for: Business
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