Beautiful Belize offers Royal Holiday Cruises members a world awash in color, from exotic birds and flowers in inland jungles to delicate corals and tropical fish beneath the waves. The tiny but vibrant Central American country immerses its Royal Holiday Cruises guests in a tropical paradise of verdant rainforests, ancient ruins, soft beaches, and easygoing atmosphere.
As capital of this former British colony, Belize City is the heart of the country’s cultural and economic life. A small city, it reflects the best of the laid-back Belizean culture, and is the best jumping-off place for exploring the area.
Belize Barrier Reef
Belize has long been a favored destination for scuba divers and snorkelers. On the Belize Barrier Reef, divers traveling with Royal Holiday Cruises can view spectacular corals, fish, and other sea life in warm, crystal-clear waters. Also just off the coast is the mystifying Blue Hole, a vast submarine cave first explored over 40 years ago by Jacques Cousteau.
The mysterious ruins of the ancient Mayan civilization have long drawn visitors to Central America. Belize boasts a number of impressive archaeological sites, including Xunatunich, which is about 80 miles west of Belize City, and Altun Ha, which is about 30 miles northward.
The patio at the very popular Riverside Tavern gives Royal Holiday Cruises diners excellent views of Haulover Creek. This restaurant is said to have some of the best steaks, burgers, and prime rib in Belize. In addition, all its beef is locally raised.
Belizean Handicraft Market
Friendly and conveniently located to a number of sights in Belize City, the Belizean Handicraft Market is one of the best places for Royal Holiday Cruises members to pick up a traditional carving, pot, or basket as a souvenir.
The perfect place to learn about the native animals of this tropical country, the Belize Zoo is home to an array of large cats, monkeys, jungle reptiles, tropical birds, and more. The Zoo’s most high-profile resident is April, a “mountain cow” or tapir, the national animal of Belize.
Museum of Belize
Formerly a jail, the modest but intriguing Museum of Belize hosts a number of interesting permanent displays of Mayan and colonial-era artifacts, as well as frequently changing temporary exhibitions.
A truly unique part of Belize City, this bridge dates to 1923 and is the last of its kind. It rotates rather than raises to allow boats to pass.
Bacab Eco Park
Animal lovers will delight in a horseback tour at Bacab Eco Park. Here, Royal Holiday Cruises visitors can spot lounging iguanas, howler monkeys, colorful parrots, and many other denizens of Belize’s tropical forests.
Baron Bliss Memorial and Lighthouse
The Fort George Lighthouse overlooks the historic harbor district of Belize City. It was designed by one of Belize’s major benefactors, Baron Bliss, whose tomb lies nearby.
The Smoky Mermaid
The beautiful courtyard of the Smoky Mermaid is a popular place for Royal Holiday Cruises tourists to sample Caribbean-influenced seafood dishes and enjoy the ambiance of tropical shade trees.
Community Baboon Sanctuary
Known locally as “baboons,” Belize’s black howler monkeys are the highlight of the Community Baboon Center. The Center is devoted to protecting these primates and their forest habitat.