Monthly Archives: July 2016

Belize Update : Another Look at Belize City

Belize City has a well-deserved bad reputation for gang-related violence but in the 16 years we have been visiting Belize there have been significant signs of improvement.

Belize City with a population of 70 to 80 thousand is the only real city in Belize with a population of 3 to 4 hundred thousand. But it has been and will always be the centre of the country if not the official Capital of Belize. After several near catastrophic hurricanes nearly razed Belize City, the government of the day moved the capital to Belmopan about 30 miles inland.

Famous lift bridge over Haulover Creek and Belize Harbour

Famous lift bridge over Haulover Creek and Belize Harbour

Belize is a 3rd world country which, by definition, means that it is struggling economically to fit itself into the 21st century. Typically, around the world, under these circumstances, the unemployed and impoverished tend to gravitate to the ‘big’ city, hoping to find work and a better life.

What they more often find is more unemployment and deeper impoverishment. This forces many to take desperate measures and if needs be do anything to survive, including ‘ganging up’ and engaging in an assortment of criminal activities, often competing with one another violently.

Belize Courthouse on Regent Street, Belize City South

Belize Courthouse on Regent Street, Belize City South

The Government and the Police, like the Governments and Police in Toronto, seem to be coming around to the understanding that the cause of much criminal activity is deep-rooted social anxiety and can only by cured, finally, by creating an environment that meets the social needs of the down-trodden as well as the more privileged.

Downtown, Belize City South

Downtown, Belize City South

Also, in the past 10 years, the governments in Belize have invested a lot of money in improving the infrastructure of the City of Belize. The Canal that runs across the south of the city has been dramatically cleaned up and some neighbourhoods dating back to Colonial days have been restored to present-day standards. The bus terminal has been improved as well.

On the coast, a large Tourist Village has been built on the ruins of the past, inviting tourists from cruise ships easy access to Belize as a whole, and improving the lot of travellers who use Belize City as a nexus destination, that is, a place to pass through on the way to somewhere else. Two large water-taxi terminals are available to take tourists and travellers alike to the two largest islands, Caye Caulker and Ambergris Caye and the town of San Pedro.

Famous lift bridge close to water taxi terminals

Famous lift bridge close to water taxi terminals

Belize City itself has a bustling, busy, sometime raucous and a little bit raunchy down-town, and definitely worthy of a look-see. Check out Regent and Albert Street and the side streets that cross them for shops and restaurants.

Albert Street, downtown Belize City South

Albert Street, downtown Belize City South

At night, ask at your hotel where best to go for supper. Or stay put and order delivery. There are hot spots to visit, up-scale restaurants and night clubs but I’m not familiar with them.  All I know for sure is that Belize City, except for the clubs, is like the rest of the country: if it is past 10 p.m. , it’s bed-time.

Check out my blogs on Nexus Destinations, Belize City pt 1 and 2 for more in-depth information.

Cafe Belize

Click on the link below to take you to Chez Belize and choose a delight from our menu

And Happy Travels to all my fellow travellers.

Belize Update #3


Belize is a small country, the smallest in Central America. It has a population of 400,000+ and you could drive across it from Mexico to Guatamala in 9 hours. It is bounded on the east by Mexico, on the north and the west by Guatamala and on the south coast by the Caribbean Sea.


Belize City, coming in for a landing

What do you get in such a small package?

You get a people with a diverse mix of ancestries and skin-colours ranging from black to shades of brown to yellow to white. English is the official language and the language of instruction in the schools, but Spanish is almost universal followed by Kriole, Mayan, Garifuna , Mestizo, Chinese and Old German. But not to worry. English will get you anywhere or anything.


With a friend in San Ignacio in the rain forest

You get flat lands, rain forests, mountains, waterfalls and seashores.

You get two cities: Belize City, pop. 80,000, and Belmopan, the new capital of Belize where the Parliament was moved inland years ago away from the threat of another hurricane that would again blow down and wash away much of Belize City, the original capital.


Town of Dangriga from the Chaleanor Hotel on the coast of the Caribbean

You get about 9 towns spread across 5 Districts (the same as a Province or a State) and hundreds of villages, most everyone dominated by one or more Christian churches of one or more denominations.


Sunrise in Hopkins Village, south of Dangriga

And you get the Caribbean Sea lapping the southern coast of Belize, home to hundreds of cayes (small islands) prime amongst them Caye Caulker and the much larger Ambergris Caye that boasts the town of San Pedro.

Belize is diverse, yet magically manageable.


Drinking coffee on Caye Caulker, an island off the coast of Belize

Check out the Menu at the Chez Belize, the virtual café and restaurant created by In the menu you will find every post presented as a food dish, some appetizers, some mains, and some desserts.

Cafe Belize

Welcome to Chez Belize – Virtual Cafe and Bar

click on the link  above to visit Chez Belize

Whet your travel appetite and come back often for more.

Bon Appetite! Brian and Shirley.