Best of Belize: 7 Day Itinerary + More!

The Ultimate 2 Weeks in Belize Itinerary

In Belize, Country Guides & Itineraries by Sheena20 Comments

Check out our ultimate Belize itinerary and find out the top things to do in Belize on a budget… including a secret desert island destination that will make you want to stay even longer.

Check out these top 8 Belize destinations: 

Find more inspiration in one of the Belize guide books below! 

Don’t forget to purchase travel insurance before any trip to Belize. We’ve been using World Nomads for over 10 years – it’s the best-value provider we’ve found but there are important things to consider.

For more details check out our World Nomads review.

2 Weeks in Belize Itinerary

#1. Caye Caulker

If you only visit one place in Belize, make it Caye Caulker!

Caye Caulker is a tiny coral island, an hour away from Belize City by water taxi. The whole island measures 8 km long by 1.6 km wide but the centre of town is even smaller & can be walked in 10 minutes.

With a relaxing environment, Caye Caulker is popular with backpackers traveling through Central America and one the top Belize attractions. There’s not actually much to see & do but be sure to take a Belize snorkeling tour out to Hol Chan Marine Reserve.

Swimming with nurse sharks & stingrays is an experience you’ll never forget. You’ll want to capture those underwater moments with a GoPro.

Other marine life you’re likely to see at Hol Chan are manatees (seasonal), turtles and seahorses as well as stunning coral gardens.

We always travel with our own snorkel set as an ill-fitting mask can really ruin a snorkel trip but they are included in the tour price.

Caye Caulker is also a base for dives to Belize’s famous Blue Hole. The dive is not to be underestimated not and restricted to experienced divers only – as well as those that can afford it.

Experience the best of Belize in 1 destination – it’s #1 on our list of the top things to do in Belize!

* We spent 2 nights on Caye Caulker.

Things to do on Caye Caulker

This island paradise caters to all budgets but we’ll show you all the things to do on Caye Caulker on a budget!

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Belize Itinerary Caye Caulker
Caye Caulker is easy-breezy & should be on every Belize Itinerary!

#2. Belize City

Belize City comes with a bad reputation of crime & poverty, which is not entirely unjustified.

It’s regarded as one of the more unsafe destinations in Central America so be aware of your surroundings and keep your valuables secure at all times.

We recommend wearing a secure money belt and carrying an anti-theft daypack.

In Belize City you’ll find people from all walks of life. The streets are rundown, the pavements are uneven and the canals are grimy. Erik felt harassed everywhere he went.

In contrast, I didn’t have any issues in my short time there as a solo female traveler. I enjoyed the grittiness of the city and also discovered nice areas of colonial and seaside charm.

Belize City attractions include:

  • Swing Bridge
  • St John’s Cathedral
  • Museum of Belize

None of these are major points of interest if you only have 2 weeks in Belize. But Belize City is worth a quick stop if you’ve got a few hours to spare as you’re going to/from Caye Caulker or the airport.

* We visited Belize for a couple of hours after returning on the ferry from Caye Caulker.

Belize City Travel Guide

There aren't many things to do in Belize City but find out why it’s worth a quick stop as you transit through the country

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Top Things to do in Belize City
Cruise through the gritty streets of Belize City

#3. Community Baboon Sanctuary

Take a guided nature walk at the Community Baboon Sanctuary & hear the call of the black howler monkey – or the baboon as locals call them.

Naturally there are no baboons in Belize but howler monkeys are native to the forests of Central & South America. This is getting too confusing… lets move on!

The Community Baboon Santuary is a community-run, conservation organization set-up to protect the black howler monkey. It’s a unique conservation organization involving 14 landowners from the surrounding villages.

Visitors can tour the museum at the visitor centre and take guided walks through the reserve. There are over 3000 monkeys so seeing them is pretty much guaranteed though they camouflage well high in the trees. What’s for sure is that you’ll definitely hear them!

The howler monkey is the 2nd loudest animal in the world, after the lion – hearing is believing! They sure do have an all-mighty roar, which can be heard from up to 5 km away. This lets other monkeys know to stay away & that they’ve occupied a certain territory.

If you’re traveling throughout Central America you don’t need to make a special trip to the Community Baboon Sanctuary. You should definitely come across howler monkeys elsewhere on your travels, including at the Tikal ruins in Guatemala.

* We visited the Community Baboon Sanctuary for a few hours in between Caye Caulker/Belize City & San Ignacio

Belize Itinerary Black howler monkeys
There’s a 99% chance you’ll see howler monkeys at the Community Baboon Sanctuary!

#4. San Ignacio

San Ignacio is the easy-going travellers hub of Belize and a great base for day trips around the region if you’re wondering where to go in Belize.

It’s may be a small town but it’s equipped with fantastic tourist infrastructure such as good budget accommodation, a variety of restaurants and decent transport connections to the rest of Belize.

Of course there also the many travel agencies that can help you arrange tours and adventure activities like hiking, kayaking and horseback riding. Unfortunately for budget travelers, it’s hard to get around without your own wheels. And the tours don’t come cheap either.

Despite the high price tag don’t miss the Actun Tunichil Muknal cave tour, voted the best Sacred Cave by National Geographic. You’ll have an awesome time swimming and wading through the Mayan under world, coming across skeletons and ancient artefacts along the way.

Put the ATM caves on your adventure bucket list for sure! It’s was the highlight of our 2 weeks in Belize.

Another highlight of San Ignacio is nearby Xunantunich, arguably the best Belize ruins. It stands on a hilltop and is comprised of 5 plazas and the towering 40 m high El Castillo (The Castle). From the top there are stunning 360 degree views of the Cayo countryside. You can even look into neighbouring Guatamala which is just 1 km away.

Cahal Pech is another Mayan archaeological site in San Ingancio a 20 minute walk from the town centre.

* We spent 3 nights in San Ignacio

San Ignacio Travel Guide

San Ignacio is the ultimate day trip mecca – find out what tours are available as well as information on attractions, food, accommodation & transport

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Things to do in Belize Xunantunich ruins
Don’t miss the Xunantunich ruins, just 12km from San Ignacio

#5. St Herman’s Blue Hole National Park

Take a day trip to St Herman’s Blue Hole National Park where you can swim in a beautiful cenote, trek through the jungle & explore a nature cave.

From the visitor centre, follow the short trail to St Herman’s Cave. You can explore it DIY style but only for 200 metres. To go further you need to hire a guide to show you the amazing limestone formations and Mayan artefacts inside.

Either way, be sure to bring along a torch light as it’s pitch black as you soon as you enter.

From St Herman’s Cave it’s a 45 minute mosquito-ridden, jungle trek to the Blue Hole. Both sites are connected by an underground stream. Alternatively you can try hitchhiking on the Hummingbird Highway for the 1 minute drive between the 2 sites.

The Blue Hole was formed by the collapse of an underground limestone cave. It measures 100m in diameter & 33m deep. It’s a lovely place for a refreshing swim but it can get busy with other visitors. 

St Herman’s Blue Hole National Park also offers hiking trails, bird watching & a lookout tower. Travel agencies offer Crystal Cave adventure tours.

* We visited St Herman’s Blue Hole National Park on our way from San Ignacio to Dangriga (where we spent 1 night)

Belize Itinerary St Herman’s Blue Hole National Park
St Herman’s Blue Hole National Park is a perfect day trip in Belize!

#6. Placencia

Visit Belize and enjoy the good life in stylish Placencia.

There’s great lodging, dining & shopping options as well as plenty of nature tours on offer:

  • Swimming with whale sharks (March to July)
  • Wildlife-watching boat trip down Monkey River
  • Canoeing or kayaking on the Placencia lagoon
  • Snorkeling and diving at Laughing Bird Caye National Park

These places are mostly outside of Placencia. In the small town itself, there’s not much to see or do except relax and soak in the laidback atmosphere.

The Southern beaches aren’t great for swimming so consider spoiling yourself by checking-in to one of the many  luxury resorts up north .

* We spent 1 night in Placencia

Belize Itinerary Placencia Beach
Enjoy the good life in stylish Placencia!

#7. Hopkins

There’s no real reason to visit Hopkins, Belize unless you’re taking the Sunday morning boat to Glovers Atoll Resort.

However if you do find yourself here it’s a laid back town with friendly people of Garifuna ethnicity. The Garifuna are mixed-race descendants of African, Caribbean & Indigenous South American people, originating from the African slave trade in the 17th century.

Today, they mainly live along the Carribean Coast in Honduras but there are smaller populations in Belize, Guatemala & Nicaragua along with a large diaspora in the US.

There aren’t many things to do in Hopkins but you can while the days away on the beach, if the weather is agreeable.

The Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary is nearby where you can go hiking, camping, wildlife spotting and birdwatching.

So chill-out in Hopkins, meet the local Garifuna people & stock up on your desert island supplies for Glovers Resort.

* We spent 3 nights in Hopkins

Garifuna kids at Hopkins beach
Jump in to Hopkins!

#8. Glovers Atoll Resort

Glovers Atoll Resort offers a rustic desert island experience, where you can camp or stay in cabins or bungalows on your own private island, 3 hours from the mainland.

Go snorkeling or diving, laze in hammocks & drink all the coconuts you want! This is what your Belize escape should be all about!

But Glovers isn’t for everyone – there’s no electricity or running water & that’s only the beginning. Waking up to 360-degree Caribbean sea views every morning though is pretty amazing.

A one week package including transport ranges from US$109 for camping to $328 for accommodation in an over-water bungalow.

We camped with a tent similar to this 2-Person tent and had a fantastic experience though it wasn’t without some hiccups.  Be prepared with your food, water, gear & expectations & you’ll have no worries.

Check out our post below for more details on what to expect:

* We spent 6 nights on Glovers Island, then 1 night back in San Ignacio before crossing into Guatemala

Glovers Atoll Resort Review

From accommodation & food to facilities & activities, find out everything you need to know about staying at the rustic Glovers Atoll Resort

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Over water bungalows on Glovers Atoll
Stay in an over water bungalow on Glovers Atoll Resort!

Other Belize Destinations

We recommend Lonely Planet’s Belize travel guide or Lonely Planet’s Central America on a Shoestring if you are traveling through the region.

Other destinations in Belize include:

  • Great Blue Hole
  • Altan Ha ruins
  • Lamanai ruins
  • Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Caracol ruins
  • Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Santuary
  • Punta Gorda
Planning a Belize vacation? Check out our Belize travel guide and find out the best Belize destinations and things to do in Belize #belize #belizetravel #centralamerica
Planning a Belize vacation or honeymoon? From Belize cave tubing to island hopping check out our Belize travel tips and find out the best things to do in Belize #belize #belizetravel #centralamerica #diytravel
Planning a Belize vacation? Find out where to go and the best things to do in Belize. Check out our Belize travel tips in this 2 week itinerary #belize #belizetravel #centralamerica #diytravel

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, which means that we receive a small commission if you click on a link & purchase something that we have recommended, at no extra cost to you.

Visited in July 2016

Updated in November 2018

Comments

  1. Belize always strikes me as a great mix between jungle and beach. If you are not hanging at the beach you are exploring the jungle for ruins, caves and swimming holes. Looks like a great place to visit and one my family would love

  2. Baboon Sanctuary! I can’t wait to go there! Hope my hearing’s not gonna disappear after 🙂

  3. This is exactly the kind of picture I am talking about … the kind that stands out and people cannot get out of their mind. I am talking of course about the one from the Maya ruin. Never seen a thing like it.
    Love the way the steps and everything is integrated into the existing hill.
    Much better and more charming than bulldozing and flatting an area to the ground and then build on it with “human perfection”.
    Repect nature.
    The Mayans did.

  4. Such a beautiful, beautiful place. I’m putting this into my travel bucket list. I would love to check out the Xunantunich ruins myself. And Glovers Atoll looks amazing. Thank you for sharing this!!!

  5. It looks like a really magical place to visit. For me the Xunantunich Ruins and swimming with the nurse sharks & stingrays would be my highlights. I hope to get there one day. Thank you for the information.

  6. I so happy to read this! I live in Costa Rica right now and have been wanting to visit Belize, I can’t wait to see it in person soon!! Beautiful!!

  7. Even in a country as comparatively small as Belize, it’s important to have a solid itinerary if you hope to get the most out of the experience and I must say, if you are hitting all these spots, you really are taking in most of the highlights. Also, great shots. You really captured the colorfulness and vibrancy of the place. And seriously, who doesn’t love baboons?

  8. I know so many people that have visited Belize this year that I’m so very tempted to go see the beauty with my own eyes! I think I’d also be super tempted by one of those over water bungalows. Guess I should start saving now right?

  9. Thanks for sharing and the tip.
    I read a few posts about Belize by now and it seems it’s getting popular.
    I visited the Yucatan before and thought it was amazing. I wonder if Belize has any difference about the culture and history as compared with places in Mexico?

    1. Author

      Great question, Belize is very different from Mexico & the Yucatan, it’s the odd ball in the region with a culture & history closer to the Caribbean than Latin America. Hope you get a chance to visit one day!

  10. Swimming with nurse sharks & stingrays – yes please! I was just thinking about Belize as a travel destination to visit in 2017 so this is so timely for me. How affordable is it as a travel destination?

  11. Belize looks so beautiful & this post has such a wealth of knowledge. If i’m ever headed in the direction, I’ll be checking this post again! 🙂

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