Friday, July 31, 2009

Belize


Stop #1.
View of the beach on Ambergris Caye.


This was our hotel.

I expected Belize to look like this.

But it mostly looked like this....

And this....

And this.
(2 points to you if you spot why I really took this picture)

The furthest South I've been is Tijuana.
For some reason, I didn't think Belize would be so much more Tijuana and so much less Kauai.

Silly me.

But it was still warm & sunny.

Excellent travelers.

Her favorite place.

Note the sea grass washed up on shore.

The beach was not really a "play in the water" type of beach.

To preserve the ecology of the reef, the sea grass growing up from the sea floor is left intact. Stingrays live in the sea grass, so we tried to discourage her from exploring beyond the minimal open areas under the waves.

Big J spent much of his time here. He enjoyed himself tremendously.
We enjoyed not having to tote the stroller.

Big Daddy got to dive the reef (2nd longest barrier reef in the world).
I snorkeled Shark Alley & saw Nurse Sharks & 4 foot Stingrays.

Stop #2.
The Jungle.
7 miles outside San Ignacio, 4 miles from the Guatemalan border.
This is the River Camp portion of the resort.
Yep. That's where we slept.
No A/C.
No Fan.
Enormous Bugs - no extra charge.

It was sort of what I imagine summer camp would be like.
But with 90 degree heat and 93% humidity.

This is where we ate breakfast and dinner (included in the price of our campout).
The Belizean food was excellent.

This is the single track mud trail we hiked to go to and from the main resort.
There was a 70 degree drop down to the river below (a good 200 yards below).
We held hands very tightly.
Our little adventurer, Lane, was eager to take the lead (We were informed that Lane is her "explorer name").

This was the saltwater pool at the main resort.
It was delightful.

These little friends let us know they were around each night between 1 and 4am.
Howler Monkeys don't really howl. It's more of a low & rather terrifying growl.

A little disconcerting when the only light is the weak glow of the kerosene lamp left outside to illuminate the way to the outhouse.


We met many iguanas.



The resort raises Blue Morpho Butterflies.




We had an up-close tour & learned all about them.

We explored the ruins at Xunatunich.

They've recently been dated to 1200BC.



Partial frieze seen on the North and South sides of the main temple structure.
This is a replica, with the original directly behind it.
The day we visited, a tropical storm hit.
Our guide said he's never done the tour in that kind of rain before.



A moment of relief from the rain. We were soaked to the skin in minutes.

To get to the ruins, we took a hand-cranked ferry across the Macal River.

It rose 6 inches in an hour and a half. Later that day the river rose & covered one of the two bridges in San Ignacio (about 5 feet above the river).

4 comments:

sarita said...

Now this is the kind of vacation post I LOVE! Lots of pics and just enough words to fill me in.

Is that a church meetinghouse in an apartment building? Sweet.

I miss you and so does Iowa.

Rosie said...

Hooray and welcome back. Stella is constantly drawing pictures of herself with Lane. We miss you. Did you actually go to church?

Ashley said...

Oh my jungle stay - I am SOOO impressed y'all stayed there with the bugs and monkeys in full swing (haha, no pun intended originally..;)

Oh how FUN y'all got to go to Belize - I loved the pics!! Crazy the church can be found anywhere - even storied buildings. Yea for vacations and the fact that y'all made it happen!

Jackie S said...

This looks amazing! What an awesome experience! When you're sweltering in the heat back home, remember the jungle and play a game of "which is hotter?" to distract you.