You Better Belize-it

As Duane and I were planning our wedding and figuring out details, we started looking for a place to take our honeymoon. In true Sarah from, I found the place we would take our honeymoon before the actual site for our wedding. We (I) had decided on Belize, specifically, Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort located in Hopkins, for 10 days 9 nights. This trip was truly amazing. Hamanasi was probably one of the best resorts I have ever stayed in. The food, people, accommodations, activities and property are above and beyond.

Arrival Day:
Upon arrival, we received chocolate covered fruit, cookies and champagne

Our GIANT Bed with a handwritten note

Our beach


In Belize there are several cultures (Spanish, Mayan and Garifuna) that play a huge role in the country. One night a group of Garifuna drummers came and played for us in the lounge. The Garifuna are descendants of West African, Central African, Carib and Arawak people.They live along the Caribbean Coast in Belize, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Honduras including the mainland, and on the island of Roatán. The largest Garifuna Village in Belize is Hopkins Village.

Garifuna Drummers
Day 1: We really just want to lounge this day and get into vacation mode.


Day 2: In the afternoon we went for a kayak tour on the Sittee River. From its origin deep within the Maya Mountains the Sittee River snakes its way to the sea with its mouth just south of Hopkins. Our trip started near the Creole village of Sittee River and we worked our way towards the ocean. We spotted green and orange iguanas lounging in trees, parrots, motmots, herons and egrets! As we got closer to the sea, we were surrounded by large mangrove forests.

Sittee River

We only do intense kayaking around here...


Day 3: It was an early morning this day to head inland to explore 2 Mayan ruins. First we headed over to Cahal Pech, or Place of the Ticks. Cahal Pech was the royal family's residence. This medium-size Mayan center comprises 34 structures compacted in a small area covering slightly more than 2 acres. The site includes 7 plazas, 2 ball courts, 6 plain Stella and 1 alter, as well as temple pyramids. Moreover, it has the second oldest structure in the Mayan world. Cahal Pech was first developed during the Preclassic period (1000 BC to AD 200) and abandoned around 800 AD. This site offers a view over the city of San Ignacio on one side and over the Belize River valley on the other. 

Temple



After lunch we went to Xunantunich, or Stone Maiden, which is located near the Guatemalan border.This major ceremonial center situated high on a limestone ridge with a panoramic view of the Cayo District. The main pyramid, El Castillo, has detailed stucco friezes.

We had to take a hand-cranked ferry across the river




To the left Guatemala, the right Belize


Howler Monkeys!
Later that night, a Garifuna singing, dancing and drumming group came to play for us!

Most adorable little girls ever. 
Annndddd they drug me out to dance

Day 5: This day we went snorkeling and prepared for a crazy thunder storm. Belize boasts the Western Hemisphere’s longest continuous barrier reef, approximately 185 miles of coral formations with a large variety of marine life. Our visibility ranged between 60 to 100ft and we had close encounters with eagle rays, southern stingrays, crab, giant fish, colorful reef fish and anything you see in Finding Nemo, sans sharks.

The storm clouds were rolling in!

Life is rough

Day 6: Just a short drive from Hamanasi was a thrilling hike through the rainforest leading to a beautiful waterfall. The Antelope Falls hike is a rigorous, steep trek to a 100-foot waterfall with an incredible top view all the way to the ocean. Further up the falls is a dipping pool perfect for cooling off. Nearby are the unexcavated remains of the ancient Mayan city of Mayflower. Archaeologists are still unearthing and piecing together the history of this modest Mayan ruin, which is over grown by the jungle. Orchids, birds and lush vegetation abound!


You can't tell here, but we are on some serious cold medications

Antelope Falls


Of course I did. 

Day 9 (Last day): More Snorkeling!!! 




Look at that water!!

We had our last dinner on the beach :)

We CANNOT wait to go back!!!

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