<p style="margin: 0px 0px 15px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; font-size: 12px; color: #666666; font-family: Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 16.796875px;"><strong style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; background-color: transparent;">Of a six month journey</strong><span style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; background-color: transparent;"><strong style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; background-color: transparent;"> around the world, one of the biggest highlights was an island in Belize called Caye Caulker. This is a glorious part of the world, hidden off the beaten track.
The island is a 40 minute water taxi ride from Belize City, and when you arrive the first thing you notice is how small and non-commercial it is. The island has a total of three streets, aptly named front, middle and end.
Relaxing island style
With accommodation sorted at reasonable rates, we began exploring. Walking along the water, we ambled to the end of the island. This was our favourite place, with the most basic yet funkiest bar on the edge of the water. And I mean the edge, some of the tables and chairs are submerged in the crystal water of the Caribbean, not by design but by nature – the island sits on a sink hole. There is no beach as such, you just grab yourself a spot on the pier at the edge of the clearest, most spectacular blue water ever seen.
At The Lazy Lizard Bar, you relax to amazing reggae music played by DJ’s on the roof of the bar. Enjoy a beer or refreshing cocktail, hop into the warm water to cool down, do some snorkelling or just enjoy the heat and lap up the sun. We spent almost every day at The Lazy Lizard and the only day we ventured elsewhere was to go diving, another attraction in this beautiful place.
Diving into the blue
A two hour boat trip away, we dived the Blue Hole, a highlight for any diver. The dive is 40 metres into a blue sink hole 400 metres wide and 125 metres deep. We saw beautiful fish, came across the odd reef shark and swam through huge stalactite structures which stood above sea level thousands of years ago! There are two other dives included in the package, both are shallower and involve exploring coral and sea life. The trip also included a stop on Half Moon Caye, an uninhabited national conservation area and an island straight out of a postcard.
Exploring exotic flavours
Back on Caye Caulker there are lots of bars and restaurants, most of which are very basic, yet the food is outstanding. Seafood is caught daily by the locals and could not be fresher – you can watch them gutting and cleaning their catch on the water’s edge each afternoon. Lobster tails are a specialty and highly recommended – and cheap! Many restaurants barbecue your choice of seafood on the street while you enjoy a drink inside. If you don’t like seafood there are plenty of alternatives. I had one of the best curries I have ever tasted on our last night. The people are incredibly friendly, and unlike most of South and Central America they speak English but with a Jamaican accent, which helps you slip into island mode immediately!
I have been asked what the worst part of Caye Caulker was and the answer is simple – leaving!
Belize fact file
Location: Bordered by Mexico, Guatemala and the Caribbean Sea
Largest city: Belize City
Language: Belize is the only Central American country where English is the official language