Entries in Belize (7)


The Preservation  Zone

This week in Belize we were lucky to complete several dive surveys in the beautiful preservation zone of the marine reserve.

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Into The  Deep

When the prospect of coming to Belize to work with Frontier was first presented to me, it was the opportunity to learn to scuba dive that excited me most, as I’m sure is true for many others who come here. As a photojournalist, with my primary focus being on travel and wildlife photography, I need to be able to go wherever the story is.

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Happy Garifuna Settlement Day 

I always find that the best way to integrate yourself with the local community is to embrace the culture as much as possible, and nothing is more culturally significant in Belize than Garifuna Settlement Day (November 19th).

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The 5 Best Species To See In Belize

Flick | Keith Ramos via U.S. Fish and Wildlife ServiceBelize is home to a number of different, unique species but here is our list of the five best species to see while you're in the country...

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Why go to Belize?

Belize, where? Belize, sorry again where are you going? That is a question I got a lot when I  excitingly said I was going. Belize is in the Caribbean for those of you that don’t know, but I’m guessing you guys reading this already know that as you are thinking about coming here? You are thinking about it right? You need persuading? Okay book your place now, because if you don’t now, you won’t be able to as everyone else who has read this will have booked places.

Okay ready? Here we go!

It's the Caribbean!? Is that enough? No? Okay maybe that was a bit of a generic weak start, but why start off with your best stuff? We’re going to build this up to a crescendo! As I said its the Caribbean and not touristy Caribbean, The real Caribbean!! You go to a little island called Caye Caulker and straight away you will feel like you don’t want to leave, everyone is so friendly. You been to uni? Remember freshers? haha, okay bad question, remember some of freshers? Yes? Good! Remember how everyone was so friendly, you could strike up a conversation with anyone! Well Caye Caulker is like that! It’s awesome! Now that's the South Island, It has all the amenities you will need including a working shower! A working shower you ask? Well yeah, we will get to that shortly.

Like I just said that was the South Island. You, you lucky thing will be have the privilege of staying on the North Island. Much to the hospitality of the Belize Fisheries Department.

Next reason, Hammocks! Loving the Hammock, forget a bed, you will be sleeping in your own little cocoon. Let me say I was dubious about it, but i’m loving it. I want to take one home, however I don’t have anywhere to hang it. Now the North Island, the place you will be staying, its pretty cool! The grounds are small full of sand and Coconut trees, you will learn to love coconuts, what's that you love coconuts, well here is ideal!

Then there is a pier, you will be spending a lot of down time on this stretch of wood. It extends out to the ocean. During the day you will see nurse sharks and spotted eagle rays cruising by DINOSAURS! oh wait no, we found that on a beach clean, it was a plastic one, but who doesn’t love a good plastic dinosaur! RIght back on track…. you will aslo see lion fish at the bott…..oh wait no the lionfish have gone now. That was us, they were hiding at the bottom of the steps in to the water, but as they are an invasive species, they can be hunted and eaten, it tastes pretty nice, yes you can eat them. That's another thing you can snorkel and swim and maybe, just maybe catch dinner in your front garden. We did it a couple of times, once finding a couple of Lobster traps with 6, yes 6 lobsters in them. Like I said you will be spending a lot of time out on the pier, especially at night, the night sky here is amazing! Hunt you’re dinner? Why would I do that? Well if you are like me a very eager carnivore you will crave meat as it is a vegetarian menu you will be feasting on, it's nice but I haven’t been persuaded to go vegetarian. Oh yeah, you have an Italian on camp as well, Clio, she’s a great cook, supporting the stereotype that Italians make good food! A stereotype yes, but a good stereotype!

Persuaded yet? No? Come’on!! I’m trying here!

Fine, I will keep going, but you’re wasting your time here, you could be sorting you what stuff you need for your trip, or all the places could have gone already because they were more easlly persuaded than you, you difficult person you, but don’t blame me if that is the case! So lets continue, the night sky is awesome, you will see soooo many stars and if they say to make a wish when you see  a shooting star, make a long list before you come out here! You will see so many, one of them might just come true. Oh wait one already has you’re in the Caribbean!

That’s the evening, but what about the days? They are even better, diving? You will be out on a boat scuba diving 3 times a week (weather depending) seeing some amazing stuff, going to locations all over the island. Beach conservation? That’s what I’m here for, you will be out on the trail cleaning the beach, surveying mangroves and seagrass, conchs and lobsters. But don’t worry, you will equally get time to go to the same places as the scuba guys. For example I went out on a Lobster survey whilst the others where scuba diving and i saw and swam with a Hawksbill Turtle. You will also get to go to Shark and Ray alley, sounds dangerous doesn't it?! No its not, the sharks are nurse sharks and the rays are pretty tame. Just don’t tell your friends, just say the title and let them have the image of you snorkeling amongst teaming groups of sharks of all varieties and rays! They will look at you with an equal amount of admiration and confusion (thinking you are one of the bravest/craziest people they have met).

One last thing, I know you’ve just spent a lot of money on the trip to Belize that you have just book with Frontier, but please listen to me when I say this. Buy a gopro! You can thank me later, you will get some amazing photos and footage! Trust me, everyone else will have one and you will be wishing you had the same to document such an amazing time in a unbelizeable place!!

I hope I’ve persuaded you to come!! You will have an amazing time! I promise!

By Marc, Marine Volunteer

Find out more about the Belize Marine Conservation & Diving project.

Check out what volunteers in Belize are up to right now!




Belizean Fashion 101

As two Canadians doing a volunteer project in Central America, we packed our luggage with mostly hot summer clothes and very few long trousers and shirts. It was after a few moments upon our arrival at camp that we had realised our mistake. The temperature in Belize is indeed hot and sunny (most of the time) but there is one thing we forgot: THE SANDFLIES!

Yes these pesky critters will not hesitate to bite if you do not cover up. I, personally, had only brought a single pair of trousers and have been wearing them for three weeks straight.

Depending on what you’re doing, you will need to wear very different styles of clothes. Here is a small guide we have prepared to help you make your wardrobe for your next volunteering project:

Camp: FULL OF SANDFLIES, YOU MUST COVER UP! Long light swooshing clothes are ideal. If you are lucky enough to have wind on camp, treat yourself with a t-shirt and shorts. Here’s a tip: the dock will keep you safe from these little demons.

Scuba Diving: With your wetsuit, booties, fins, weight belt, mask, snorkel, tanks and slates, you will see the underwater world like you have never seen it before. Full of fishes, rays, sharks and corals, it will be an unbelizeable sight! Don’t forget your camera!

Town: You may want to go as the Typical American Tourist look here. This is your chance to wear your nice short clothes because there are no sandflies in the village (thank God). You will also have the luxury to have functioning bathrooms, showers, comfy beds and WiFi.

Forest Trail: Rolled long trousers, socks and sandals or booties, t-shirt, light raincoat, shades, gloves, nets, hat and insect repellent. We have named this unique look Urban Gucci: Even the mosquitos can’t stay away! Here, mosquito nets are all the rage so don’t forget yours.

Now you are all set for your next adventure!

Even though the sandflies can be bad, it is only a small part of the Belizean experience. It is truly a one-of-a-kind project filled with friendship, laughter and coconut water. You will never forget it!

By Thierry Choquette & Simon Jacques, Marine Volunteers

Find out more about the Belize Marine Conservation & Diving project.

Check out what volunteers in Belize are up to right now!


Vlog: David Soares - Diving has become second nature to me!

Check out David Soares's latest Vlog! David is a Conservation Apprentice at Belize, and here he tells about what he has been up to, and why he loves Belize! 

Find out more about the Belize Marine Conservation & Diving project.

Check out what volunteers in Belize are up to right now!