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BELIZE

2015 Big 6 Week Trip


View 2015 HK Canada USA Belize on aussirose's travel map.

FAVOURITE PHOTO -

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WHEN PLANNING OUR BIG CANADA AND USA TRIP, I WANTED TO PICK
SOMEWHERE IN THE CARIBBEAN TO RELAX AFTER THE ORLANDO VT MEET
AND BEFORE OUR BIG TRIP HOME TO PERTH, AUSTRALIA.

I THOUGHT ABOUT A CRUISE AND ALSO LOOKED AT VARIOUS ISLANDS
INCLUDING JAMAICA BECAUSE I LOVE REGGAE/CALIPSO MUSIC AND
RASTA LOOKING FELLAS (shhhh, don't tell hubby) ;)

ANYWAY, THAT WAS WHEN I DISCOVERED BELIZE, DOWN MEXICO WAY
BUT ON THE CARIBBEAN SIDE. I ALSO DISCOVERED THAT BELIZE HAD AN
AWESOME DIVE 'BLUE HOLE' THAT YOU CAN SEE FROM OUTER SPACE,
INTERESTING INCA TYPE HISTORICAL RUINS IN THE JUNGLE ALONG WITH
UNIQUE MONKEYS THAT HOWL LOUDLY, AND THAT IT WAS NOT
TOO TOURISTY BUT ALSO HAS STUNNING ISLANDS!

OK..... THIS SOUNDED LIKE OUR KIND OF PLACE :)

BELIZE ZOO

MORE INVESTIGATION REVEALED THAT BELIZE HAD A ZOO THAT HAD ALL
NATIVE ANIMALS..... MOST OF THEM ARE RESCUE ANIMALS AND ARE WELL
TAKEN CARE OF, BEING RELEASED BACK INTO THE ENVIRONMENT ONCE
REHABILITATED. ALL ANIMALS ARE KEPT IN THEIR NATURAL ENVIRONMENT
(OBVIOUSLY THEY HAVE ELECTRIC WIRING IN SOME CASES TO PREVENT ESCAPE).

I ALSO DISCOVERED THAT THE SIGNS IN BELIZE ZOO ARE UNIQUE.....
SIGNS THROUGHOUT THE ZOO ARE WRITTEN BY LOCALS, THEY RHYME AND
ARE OFTEN FUNNY AND CUTE :)

ANYWAY, THIS CUTE ZOO WAS IMMEDIATELY STUCK ON MY 'MUST SEE' LIST.

BELIZE ZOO IS THE BEST I HAVE EVER VISITED.... I AM NOT A REAL
'ANIMAL' PERSON ;) I LOVE FLOWERS.
BUT IF YOU ARE IN BELIZE THEN I TOTALLY RECOMMEND THAT YOU PAY A VISIT.

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OH AND THE TOUCAN.... HE STOLE THE SHOW! HE WAS SO CUTE!
HE WAS VERY INQUISITIVE AND I AM SURE THAT HE ENJOYED INTERACTING
WITH US JUST THE SAME AS WE ENJOYED HIS COMPANY :)
I HAVE FOREVER BEEN A FAN OF THE TOUCAN ;) SO SEEING AND CHATTING
TO THIS GUY UP CLOSE WAS A BIG HIGHLIGHT FOR ME HERE IN BELIZE.

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HOWLER MONKEY RESORT

WE WERE PLEASED WITH OUR CHOICE OF ACCOMMODATION. IF YOU ALWAYS
STAY AT THE HILTON, THEN DON'T LOOK ANY FURTHER. YOU PROBABLY ALSO
HAVE NEVER ENJOYED AN ADVENTURE WITH THE LOCALS.

THE HOWLER MONKEY RESORT IS CERTAINLY AN ADVENTURE THAT I TOTALLY
RECOMMEND! THE REASON IS NOT BECAUSE OF MOZZIES, NOR THE KILLER
ANTS, NOR THAT SLIPPERY BANK LEADING DOWN TO THE BOAT.... BUT
BECAUSE OF THE FOLLOWING-

OUR HOSTS ED, MEL, JUSEF AND JOSEF WERE SO NICE! THEY MADE US FEEL
LIKE FAMILY. INCLUDED IN THE PRICE WAS PICKUP AND DROP OFF, FULL
BREAKFAST AND DINNER EVERY DAY AND HOMELY HOSPITALITY. PLUS
THE CABINS WERE SURROUNDED WITH LOVELY SHADY TREES, GORGEOUS
VIEW OF THE RIVER, NICE SWING BENCH SEAT ON THE CABIN PORCH, AND
OF COURSE THE MAIN ATTRACTION.... HOWLER MONKEYS :)

NOW THAT IS WORTH MORE THAN A COUPLE OF MINOR IRRITATIONS.

WE WOULD COME BACK AGAIN IN A HEART BEAT! THANK YOU GUYS FOR A
FANTASTIC STAY! AND ESPECIALLY YUSEF WHO IS LEARNING THE HOTEL
TRADE TO TAKE OVER ONE DAY.... YOU DID AN AMAZING JOB YUSEF! )

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WHEREVER WE TRAVEL, IT IS NICE TO GET A FEEL FOR HOW THE OTHER HALF
LIVE. I LIKE LOCAL STREET SCENES, MARKETS AND CHECKING OUT HOUSES.

HERE IN BELIZE THE ACCOMMODATION IS SIMPLE AND THE HOUSES AND
BUILDINGS ARE COLOURFUL.

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BELIZE WILDLIFE

STAYING IN THE BELIZE JUNGLE WE SAW ANIMALS THAT WE HAVE NEVER
SEEN BEFORE. HOWLER MONKEYS, HUGE IGUANAS AND KILLER ANTS!

WHEN YOU THINK OF THE WILDLIFE HERE IN THE JUNGLE ... LIKE THE BIG CATS
IN THE ZOO... YOU WOULD NEVER THINK OF BEING AFRAID OF AN ANT?

YES.... I'M NOT KIDDING.... AN ANT!

LEAF CUTTER ANTS

WELL LET ME TELL YOU.... BELIZE HAS KILLER ANTS! BE WARNED!!
AND YOU THOUGHT US AUSSIES HAD DANGEROUS ANIMALS LOL.

THESE CUTE LITTLE LEAF CUTTER ANTS ATTACKED VARIOUS TREES, CUTTING
THE LEAVES AND TAKING THEM BACK TO THEIR HOLES.... THEIR MOUNDS ARE
HUGE.

THE ACTIVITY WOULD SPEED UP IN THE EVENING AND AT NIGHT WHEN THEY
WOULD MARCH IN LINE LIKE AN ARMY AND PITTY HELP YOU IF YOU STEPPED
ON THAT LINE....

SO CONSEQUENTLY WHEN WE FINISHED THE HOMEMADE DINNER AT THE
RESORT AND HAD TO HEAD BACK TO OUR CABIN IN THE DARK....
I WAS MARCHING LIKE AN ANT BEHIND HUBBY, BEHIND SON JESSE WHO
WAS HOLDING THE TORCH AND TELLING US WHEN TO 'JUMP' TO AVOID
BEING DEVOURED BY THESE BIG MONSTERS! :)

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IGUANAS

I REMEMBER MY SON DYLAN SEEING HIS FIRST RHINO AT THE ZOO AND
SCREAMING "DINOSOUR" AT THE TOP OF HIS VOICE.

THIS IS HOW I FELT WHEN I SAW AN IGUANA IN BELIZE FOR THE FIRST TIME!
OMG.... THEY LOOK LIKE DINOSAURS FROM ANCIENT TIME.

IT WAS FUN IGUANA SPOTTING ON OUR RIVER CRUISE WITH YUSEF.

WE SPOTTED BOTH MALE AND FEMALE (GREEN ONE). FEMALE IGUANAS ARE
DIFFICULT TO SPOT. EVEN YUSEF WAS IMPRESSED :)

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HOWLER MONKEYS

WHEN I DISCOVERED THE HOWLER MONKEY RESORT ON GOOGLE AND HEARD
THE SOUND OF HOWLER MONKEYS FOR THE FIRST TIME I WAS REALLY
EXCITED TO LEARN SOMETHING NEW AND COULDN'T WAIT TO SEE AND HEAR
THESE AMAZING ANIMALS :)

THE HOWLER MONKEY RESORT IS LOCATED RIGHT NEXT TO THE BABOON
SANCTUARY SO THERE ARE PLENTY OF MONKEYS IN THE VICINITY.

WE DIDN'T SEE ANY FROM OUR CABIN BUT WE CERTAINLY HEARD THEM!
I WILL UPLOAD A VIDEO LATER WHEN I FIGURE HOW. IF YOU HAVE NEVER
HEARD OF HOWLER MONKEYS.... THEN JUST GOOGLE THE HOWLER MONKEY
RESORT.

WE SAW PLENTY ON OUR CRUISE WITH YUSEF.

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BELIZE JUNGLE IS A BIRDERS PARADISE. I DON'T HAVE A BIG ENOUGH LENS
TO CAPTURE BIRDS.

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HOLY COW!

WE WENT FOR A WALK UP THE ROAD TO THE BABOON SANCTURARY.

THE LOCAL COWS WERE INQUISITIVE. WE WERE NOT SURE IF THEY WANTED TO
CHASE US OR IF THEY WERE JUST CHECKING US OUT. WE SAID G'DAY ANYWAY....
BUT KEPT OUR DISTANCE AND LEFT THEM TO THE JOB OF KEEPING THE GRASS DOWN
AT THE LOCAL CHURCH.

THIS WAS SO NICE.... WALKING ALONG THE SIDE OF THE ROAD IN THE JUNGLE
EARLY IN THE MORNING WITH THE SMELL OF THE DEW AND EARLY MORNING
BIRDS CHIRPING. THIS IS WHAT I CALL OFF THE BEATEN PATH STUFF.
LOVE IT! :)

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LAMANAI MAYAN RUINS

BELIZE HAS MANY MAYAN RUINS. MAYA CIVILISATION STRETCHED ACROSS
MUCH OF WHAT IS NOW SOUTHERN MEXICO, BELIZE AND GUATEMALA.
MAYAN CIVILISATION DATES BACK TO BEFORE THE AZTECS WHICH ARE
ALSO KNOWN FOR THEIR LARGE TEMPLES.

THE HOWLER RESORT ARRANGED FOR A DAY TRIP TO LAMANAI WHICH IS
THE MOST POPULAR OF THE MAYAN RUINS IN BELIZE.

LAMANAI IS LOCATED ON THE NEW RIVER IN ORANGE WALK DISTRICT.
TO GET THERE IT IS 1 HOUR BY BOAT.

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LAMANAI IS THE SPANISH HISTORIC NAME FOR LAMA' AN/AYIN, WHICH
MEANS "SUBMERGED CROCODILE." MANY CROCODILE CARVINGS
HAVE BEEN FOUND THROUGHOUT THE RUINS WHICH WOULD INDICATE
THAT THIS ANIMAL HAD A VERY IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE MAYAN
MYTHOLOGY. THE NEW RIVER IS HOME FOR MANY CROCS.

OUR GUIDE ARRANGED FOR US TO BE HERE EARLY TO ENJOY THE RUINS
ALL TO OURSELVES BEFORE THE PEOPLE FROM THE CRUISE SHIP TURNED
UP. THE GUIDE WAS VERY KNOWLEDGEABLE, TELLING US STORIES OF
THE MAYANS AND THEIR CULTURE. THEY HAD A DISTINCT HIRACHE WITH
THE AFFLUENT HAVING A VERY COMFORTABLE LIFE AND THE POOR RARELY
LIVED TO 30 AND WERE SMALL LIKE PIGMIES BECAUSE THEY WERN'T
ALLOWED TO EAT WELL.

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HERE IS THE BALL COURT WHERE A PING PONG LIKE GAME WAS HELD
WITH THE OPPONENTS EITHER SIDE SLAMMING THE BALL TO AND FRO
HITTING THIS STONE IN THE MIDDLE.

THIS WASN'T A PLEASANT SUNDAY SPORT. UNDERNEATH THE STONE WAS
FOUND A CEREMONIAL VESSEL CONTAINING LIQUID MERCURY.

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THERE ARE 2 VERSIONS OF HOW THE GAME WENT.
GUIDE SAYS THAT THE WINNER OF THE GAME WAS SACRIFICED BECAUSE
THAT PAVED THE WAY PAST MANY LAYERS IN THE AFTERLIFE TO A
POSITION OF IMPORTANCE. I BELIEVE THE GUIDE.
HIS WIFE IS A MAYAN DESCENDANT SO THAT IS WHY HE WAS SO KOWLEDGABLE.

ON THE NET IT SAYS THAT THE LOOSER WAS SACRIFICED WITH THE
WINNER GAINING A POSITION OF IMPORTANCE. MAYANS BELIEVED THAT
HUMAN SACRIFICE WAS NECESSARY FOR THE CONTINUED SUCCESS OF
AGRICULTURE, TRADE AND HEALTH.

THE HIGH TEMPLE, SOME 33M ABOVE THE PLAZA LEVEL, IS THE BIGGEST
IN THE AREA. HOWIE AND JESSE DECIDED TO MAKE THE CLIMB TO THE
TOP. I STAYED AND ENJOYED MORE MAYAN STORIES TOLD BY OUR GUIDE.

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THE MAYANS INHABITED THIS FOR ALMOST 2,000 YEARS. THEY DIDN'T
HAVE CART WHEELS OR METAL TOOLS SO THESE TEMPLES AND PYRAMIDS
ARE AMAZING STRUCTURES. THEY STUDIED THE STARS AND WERE
MATHEMATICIANS. NO ONE KNOWS EXACTLY HOW THE CIVILIZATION
WAS DESTROYED IN THE 9TH CENTURY. IT IS THOUGHT THAT EITHER
DISEASE, WARFARE, OVER-FARMING OR DROUGHT WAS THE CAUSE.
WHAT IS KNOWN IS THAT THE MAYANS WERE A RESOURCEFUL LOT WITH
AN INTERESTING CULTURE.

MEANWHILE, THE BOYS HAD MADE IT TO THE TOP....... AND OBVIOUSLY
WERE A BIT OUT OF BREATH, GIDDY AND THIRSTY.
FROM THE PEAK THEY COULD SEE RIGHT OVER TO THE CARIBBEAN SEA.

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THE MASK TEMPLE HAD A 4M STONE MASK OF AN ANCIENT MAYA KING.
OUR GUIDE EXPLAINED THAT THIS MASK WAS FOUND INTACT BEHIND
ANOTHER CONSTRUCTION THAT HAD BEEN BUILT IN FRONT OF IT.
THIS WAS BUILT BY ANOTHER KING OBVIOUSLY TO HIDE THE PAST.

IT WAS DIFFICULT TO LISTEN TO OUR GUIDE HERE BECAUSE THE
HOWLER MONKEYS DECIDED TO ADD THEIR IMPUT. THEY WERE SO LOUD!
I TOOK A VIDEO AND WILL UPLOAD HERE LATER.

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WHAT A GREAT DAY WE HAD! WE ALL HELPED WITH BRINGING THE LUNCH
ESKY UP TO THE SEATED AREA SO AFTER OUR WALK THROUGH THE RUINS
WE ENJOYED HOME COOKED LOCAL FOOD PREPARED BY OUR GUIDE'S
WIFE ALONG WITH A COOL CAN OF COKE :)

THERE WERE A COUPLE OF GIFT SHOPS, ONE OF WHICH OUR GUIDE'S
FAMILY OWNED SO WE BOUGHT A COUPLE OF TRINKETS.

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A WELL RECOMMENDED 'MUST DO' WHEN VISITING BELIZE.

JUNGLE RIVER BOAT TRIP

TAKING A JUNGLE RIVER BOAT TRIP IS MANDATORY WHEN STAYING AT
THE HOWLER MONKEY RESORT. THERE'S NOTHING BETTER THAN SHARING
LOCAL EXPERIENCES WITH THE LOCALS! :)

YUSEF TOOK US OUT IN THEIR BOAT AND WE PLAYED SPOT THE WILDLIFE.
IT WAS FUN AND ENTERTAINING. THE TRIP WAS SO RELAXING. HUBBY GOT
TO HAVE A CHANCE TO PLAY WITH HIS BIG BIRDER PHOTOGRAPHY LENS
AND WE BOTH REALLY ENJOYED YUSEF'S COMPANY. HIS IS SUCH A LOVELY
LAD :)

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FUNNY AUSSIROSE STORY

THIS DAY WASN'T WITHOUT A MINOR HICCUP. YUSEF WAS DOWN THE HILL
READY AT THE BOAT. BUT WHEN WE OPENED THE DOOR TO OUR CABIN
WE WERE CONFRONTED WITH A SEA OF BLACK ANTS. THESE ANTS WE
LEARNT LATER ARE THE JUNGLE CLEANERS. THEY SWAM THROUGH, CLEAN
UP AND DISAPPEAR.

IT JUST SO HAPPENED THAT THEY WERE RIGHT OUTSIDE OUR CABIN WHEN
WE WANTED TO GO ON THE BOAT TRIP.

NO PROBLEM....

FOR HUBBY AND JESSE. THEY QUICKLY TIPPY TOED AT FAST SPEED OVER
THE BLACK SEA OF OBSTRUCTION AND RAN DOWN THE HILL.

ME?..... NOT SO AGILE ;) LOL.

I ENDED UP GATE CRASHING THROUGH THE SEA OF BLACK.... ANTS SPREAD
EVERYWHERE. ANTS ENDED UP IN PLACES I DON'T WANT TO REMEMBER!!!

I SLID DOWN THE HILL..... WHILST BLURTING OUT A STACK OF COLOURFUL
LANGUAGE THAT I AM NOT REPEATING HERE.... AND LANDED HARD ON MY BUTT!
LUCKILY CAMERA BAG AND CAMERA SURVIVED! LAST MINUTE RESCUE FROM THE BOYS
...... LAUGHING THEIR HEAD OFF!! AND I MADE IT TO THE BOAT HAHA.

TIP..... DON'T MESS WITH LITTLE BLACK BELIZE JUNGLE CLEANING ANTS!
AND YOU THOUGHT THOSE KILLER LEAF CUTTING ANTS WERE DANGEROUS!!! :)

SADLY OUR JUNGLE ADVENTURE CAME TO AN END AND WE HEADED OUT TO
BELIZE BOAT DOCK FOR OUR FERRY TO CAY CAULKER - OUR FINAL DESTINATION
ON OUR BIG 2015 TRIP.

Posted by aussirose 14:37 Archived in Belize Tagged birds monkeys travellerspoint ruins monkey river jungle cruise usa canada resort belize leaf sanctuary mayan hk iguanas baboon lamanai howler ants cutter 2015 aussirose

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