Cheerio Belize

Published: January 2nd 2008
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We took a chicken bus from Belize City to Orange Walk. For the first time there was an alarm on the rear door and it gave us a fright when we opened it to put our bags in. It was B$5 (US$2.50) and took less than 2 hours. First thing we saw on arrival was a ute packed with young Mennonite ladies. They were so cute.

First we tried Hotel Christopher from the Lonely Planet but it did not look so great and some clever bugger left a bunch of inattentive kids in charge. So we went to the Llamanai, a relatively new place on the river side. They had a few rooms out the back of their restaurant and bar and it looked nice for US$40. We had a lovely quisadilla breakfast before going for a rest in the room. 10 minutes later it was thump, thump, thump as loud music vibrated through the room. Apparently it was Sunday which meant Karaoke day. Not amused, we left. We hadn't yet paid for the room. Although Orange Walk seemed quite pleasant we decided to move on to Corozal. It was only another hour.

Arriving in Corozal we walked to the waterfront. Nothing was marked in the book but we guessed there would be some hotels with an ocean view. And we did find one for B$70. Big and yellow and comfortable with a view of the ocean from our room and a great view from the roof .. and no Karaoke.

We went out straight away looking for Santa Rita. Taking directions from the hotel we walked up the road to Mexico. It was quite a trek, a couple of kilometers, but worth it. Just a small Mayan ruin and no entrance fee. We sat on the top and had a good view all around. Returning to the hotel we saw a marching band practice, and a lady in a beautiful wedding dress who smiled from her decorated car.

We had planned to visit the Mayan ruin just around the coast, Cerros, but found the cost prohibitive. It was only accessible by 4x4 or by boat. A tour agent quoted US$125 each for the short boat trip which was ridiculous and we failed to find a boat by wandering the waterfront. Nice town to stop in but they seem to be keen on chasing away tourists by making Cerros too difficult to reach. At least we had a final Fry Jack breakfast before heading off to Mexico.

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