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Xunantunich-Belize-4Belize has an incredible array of soft excursion options as well as some heart-stopping, adrenalin-pumping stuff that bucket-list adventures are made of. Visit ancient Mayan Ruins, zip through the jungle canopy or navigate deep and challenging cave systems with your expert Belizean guide.

In addition to the seemingly abundant supply of adventures throughout Belize, Belmopan happens to be centrally located among the absolutely best and most plentiful soft excursions, full-on adventures and cultural experiences in the entire country.

From El Rey Hotel, our guests can tour by local bus, either privately or in a shared capacity with others. Of course, price points change as you pursue your preferred way of travelling and exploring.

This list of tours is by no means exhaustive; rather, we have chosen to feature some of our guests’ most popular tours. Our sister company, Darah Tours and Transfers, which operates three comfortable touring vehicles, usually provides this service. If you plan to visit Belize between Christmas time and Easter, we strongly suggest booking the most popular adventures before your arrival, as carrying capacities are often small and it’s very possible for tours to be sold out on certain days. What a disappointment if the tours you request are sold out on the very days you are staying at El Rey Hotel! Carib-BelizeCave-Tubing-1Also, during cruise ship season (October to May), we avoid particular sites in and around Belmopan, or visit only at certain times of the day. You may depend upon our local knowledge to enhance your enjoyment of these tours by avoiding overcrowded destinations – unless you don’t mind being caught up in large groups of tourists visiting the same sites at the same time as you are.

El Rey Hotel offers easy-to-follow tour icons to help you assess your ability to tour under your own steam or to indicate that you will need the services of guides and vehicles. The full list of tours and the various ways to take the tours (shown by icons) is available at the front desk of the hotel.

indicates that you can use your trusty thumb to find lifts to certain sites, and then simply pay entry fees and look around.

means you can get to the site by bus (sometimes requiring one change). In some cases, you may need to thumb the rest of the way to get to the final destination for that tour.

represents group tours sold to various hotels in the area, which lowers the price because a larger number of people share the transport. Some parts of these tours may be outsourced on location since we often use guides who are experts at one particular site. Our goal is to provide our guests with the highest quality of information available at each site.

indicates that El Rey Hotel operates these tours on a private basis so you can determine both the pace and the level of privacy for your tour. These private tours cost a bit more than the shared tours, but many of our guests find that they are well worth it.

Maya. The very word stirs the imagination, conjuring images of spectacular ceremonial temple-pyramids, mysterious bloodletting rituals and complicated prophetic calendars. Those who study the fascinating Maya civilization estimate that at its height, over a million Mayas lived in Belize. Today they number in the thousands and are from three tribes: Yucatec in the north, Mopan in the west and Ketchi in the South. To get the most from visiting the ancient Mayan ruins for which Belize is famous, follow our guide/naturalists as they describe the remarkable culture, the impressive structures and the intriguing history of the Maya people.

  • Xunantunich – Stone Woman
    This is a maya civic ceremonial centre located on top of a ridge located a short distance from the Guatemalan border near Succotz Village on the Mopan river and offers dramatic views of the stunning scenery from “El Castillo” the highest point of the site. Access is via a hand-cranked ferry and the site includes a museum.
  • Cahal Pech – Place of Ticks
    Suprisingly the city was even bigger than Xunantunich and located at the top of the town of San Ignacio. The site is near the Macal River with a height of 80 feet and 34 structures set in rolling parkland. Some 20,000 Maya lived here at the peak of its existence.
  • Lamanai – Submerged Crocodile
    Lamanai is the most unique of all the excavated Maya sites in Belize and the river trip access adds to the excitement of the site and all that it offers. The Jaguar Temple impresses, so do the howler monkeys as they greet your arrival. It is an expansive site and the views from atop the highest point over the jungle and new river lagoon are breathtaking.
  • Altun Ha – Rockstone Water
    The most impressive of all the Maya sites for the discovery of Jade including a famous 9-poundcarved face mask of the Sun God – “Kinich Ahau”. In one of the tombs was found the skeletal remains of a man loaded with jewelry made from jade and shells. Due to its coastal location there has been found evidence of the city trading with other parts of the world.
  • Caracol – Snail
    The journey to Caracol is long but the rewards is the site itself with the highest man made structure in Belize – 12 foot higher than El Castillo at Xunantunich. The tour starts with the stellae, continues through the ball courts and partial remains of the palace before reaching the impressive Ca’ana (Sky Palace) – Astrology was always important to the Maya and you can see how the seasonal equinoxes were used in measuring time in their long calendar (5000 years) – This tour includes stops at the Rio Frio cave and the Rio On waterfalls and pools for a refreshing swim.

The Cayo region has one of the most prolific cave systems in Central America.

  • Aktun Tunichil (ATM) Caves
    The number one inland tour in Belize – your day is full of adventure and discovery as you walk through the jungle, swim into a cave and walk through an underground river passage until you reach the “Xibalba” Maya underworld. In the (she-bal-ba) you will discover thousand year old pottery shards whre the Maya used to do blood letting and sacrifices marvel at stalagmites and stalagtites, crystal formations, an ancient skull and full skeletal remains.
  • Barton Creek
    A gentle trip by kayak brings you to the navigable end of an underwater cave system with stalagmites and stalagtites, your guide will explain about the Maya and their use of caves as you enter a peaceful and wonderful underworld. On the journey we normally see some Mennonites, shy in nature but riding along on their horse and carts, almost out of a movie!
  • Crystal Cave
    For those of some physical endurance and no fear then this cave adventure will lead you almost 800 feet below the earths surface, deep into the Maya underworld. Careful footing placement and lots of energy and at the end of the day, a closer understanding of how the ancient Maya lived centuries ago
  • Cave Tubing
    This light and easy tour involves a short jungle walk and river crossing by foot. Slip into an oversized inflatable inner-tube for an informative and gentle journey through the cave system as your guide explains about life in the cave systems. Listen out for the guide shouting “butts up” to avoid what we call a Belizean bottom massage as your exposed body parts gently glide over smooth stones in the shallower parts of the cave system!
  • St. Hermans Cave
    Located near the inland blue hole and worth a half day trek with a specialist guide who will lead you through the cave system which also includes and underground river.
  • Che Chem Ha Cave
    Located near the border with Guatemala – it is a Maya burial cave with 3000 year old artifacts and believed to be one of the biggest collection of Mayan pottery on one place in Belize, possibly the world. The tour involves some strenuous uphill walking and scaling some ladders to reach viewing areas so some basic physical condition is of importance.

  • Cacao Farm
    The Maya people are very experienced at farming and working with Cacao and the farm demonstrates how Cacao is grown and how it is turned from the bean into a bar of delicious chocolate!
  • Iguana Farm
    A unique experience and one of the top visitor attractions in the region. Learn all about these ancient creatures as old as father time itself. From hatchlings to mature adults you can learn about their life cycle and how they have survived for so long.
  • Greenhills Butterfly Farm
    One of the best developed farms in the country with a very broad range of species and especially the impressive blue morpho – imagine being surrounded by these gorgeous creatures gently landing on you and flying all around you as the guide explains about the world of the butterfly.
  • Belize Zoo
    Considered as the top small zoo in the world due to its stance on the treatment of the animals, none of which are captured. All the zoo’s inhabitants are rescued and then released to the wild if they can be returned safely. Meet the most famous resident Junior Buddy a full sized Jaguar – go into his cage if you dare and feed him from a cage inside his cage or visit one of the many well set up enclosures for an up close inspection of Belize wildlife.
  • Inland Blue Hole
    Located just outside Belmopan, there is a short pathway leading down to the turquoise mountain fed chilly water that has formed into a radiant blue mini lake. There are changing rooms and its worth checking ahead of time in the rainy season as with extended heavy rains the lovely bleu can sometimes be washed to a muddy brown (luckily this does not happen often). It’s a great 45 minute stop if you are travelling along the Hummingbird Highway or a longer stop if you just want to chill in nature and read a book and take an occasional dip to cool down.
  • Horse Riding
    There are numerous horse riding stable in close proximity to Belmopan and San Ignacio offering rides along and through rivers, up onto hilly terrain and even through the forest ending up at Xunantunich Maya Site.
  • Bird Watching
    Belize is home to 300 different types of birds year round and this figure swells to 750 during migration from North America, December to end April. There are sites to see the Scarlet Macaw, the orange crested falcon, the Giant Vulture, Pygmy Stygian owl and many others including the national bird of Belize the Toucan.
  • 3 day Jungle Trek
    For those with a real spirit of adventure, we send you off into the dense rainforest with highly trained guides for a 2 night 3 day trek where you can expect to encounter a plethora of amazing wildlife and scenery, even a chance to have a Tapir, one of the 6 types of big cat or other jungle creatures pass by near to the camp.
  • Baboon Sanctuary
    The fascinating world of the Baboons (Howler monkeys) are displayed in a unique setting where the guides explain about their lives, their habits, their heirachal behaviour patterns and their daily habits.

  • Black Hole Drop
    The tour starts with a stuff climb through the rainforest until reaching the top of the canopy area at the edge of a giant sink hole. There you get geared up with safety equipment and then once you pass the lip of the cave, there is nothing between you and the jungle floor 300 feet below to a pit of nothingness and darkness. As you feel the Adrenalin pumping through your veins you an congratulate yourself heartily on reaching the bottom for overcoming a fear that few find it in their “make up” to attempt. Highly recommended for adrenalin junkies everywhere!
  • Zip Lining
    Wizz through the jungle on strategically placed platforms located amongst the trees. The zip wire varies in height and is guaranteed to have most screaming with glee as they soar like a bird in the tree tops so personal and up close with the nature that lives high up in the canopy.
  • Kayakking with Portage
    Belize is not known for having heavy graded white water such as other countries in the region, but does not fail to impress on this tour with nature, adventure, quality kayaking experiences. There is a little hard work as there is a need to carry the kayaks about 15 minutes between river access points and this all helps to build team spirit and a sense of achievement on reaching the exit point.
  • Crystal Cave
    Crystal cave is not for the feint hearted! Descend up to 200 metres 600 feet below ground in connecting chambers and then cling tightly to the rocks as you make your exit from the cave a few hours later – in between the conditions vary but are always exciting and for those with little fear and some decent physical condition, this immersion into the Maya underworld will fully satisfy.

Book Your Entire Belize Trip

Darah Travel Ltd., a sister company of El Rey Hotel, can book a full itinerary throughout Belize – including stays at other hotels – arranging your personalized trip throughout our country.

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