Belize: Mayans, Monkeys & Marine Life

NUMBER OF DAYS 9

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Explore a tropical paradise with a completely unique culture and an incredible array of wildlife and ecosystems.

Begin your family adventure in the Toledo district of Southern Belize, a hidden gem with flourishing jungle, Mayan ruins, Caribbean coastline, and vibrant Garifuna culture. Your family will explore the Mayan archeological site of Lubaantun, swim and hike at Rio Blanco National Park, and visit a local family to learn how to make traditional crafts. Zip line through the rain forest, spot some incredible wildlife, learn how to make chocolate, and meet your children’s Belizean pen pals.

Then head to Placencia, home to the Belize Barrier Reef and some of the world’s best snorkeling. Discover all kinds of fascinating aquatic life, and take a boat tour of Monkey River, spotting tropical birds, iguanas, crocodiles, manatees, and howler monkeys. Your family will fall in love with Belize and be raving about this experience for years to come!
 

2014 Dates
Dates 10 or more
travelers
7 to 9
travelers
2 to 6
travelers
Internal
Air
Special
Features
11/22 - 11/29 $4,290 $4,490 $4,990 $100

8-day trip 

12/20 - 12/28 $4,890 $5,090 $5,590 $100
12/27 - 01/04 $4,890 $5,090 $5,590 $100
2015 Dates
Dates 10 or more
travelers
6 to 9
travelers
2 to 5
travelers
Internal
Air
03/21 - 03/28 $4,490 $4,690 $4,890 $100
12/26 - 01/03 $4,790 $4,990 $5,190 $100

Child Discount:$200 per child under 12

Triple Discount: $400 for children under 12 sharing with 2 adults in 2014; $200 in 2015 

Alumni Discount: if you are a returning Thomson guest, please subtract $500 per family from these prices

Price includes: All entrance fees, accommodations based on two to a room, land transportation, private bi-lingual guide throughout, area specialists, all meals, bottled water & snacks in the vehicle, Comprehensive Travel Insurance.

Prices are based on the number of people in your party.

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Call us, we can personalize any trip to meet your travel needs!

Day 1 - Depart US / Arrive Belize
Welcome to Belize—the little Central American country with a huge variety of activities! The natural diversity here is, simply, stunning. From beautiful mountains to lush tropical rain forest and to a barrier reef that’s second in size only to Australia’s, there’s no end to exploration and discovery—Thomson style! From zip lining through the rain forest to investigating ancient Mayan ruins and snorkeling among kaleidoscopic corals, Belize offers a family vacation that’s both relaxing and exhilarating. 
 
  • Arrival and transfer to Punta Gorda/Toledo flight
Days 2-3 - Toledo
Toledo, the southernmost district of Belize, is a pristine natural paradise, and one of the best kept secrets in the world of travel. It is the least visited area in the country, with some of the most to offer, so it’s an unbelievable bonus to experience such a lack of tourist crowds. This region is home to lush rain forests, mountains, rivers, Caribbean coastline, Mayan villages and ancient ruins, amazing wildlife, and so much more. Toledo is the ideal spot for adventurous travelers looking for a refreshingly off-the-beaten-path family trip!
 
  • Explore the Mayan archeological site of Lubaantun
  • Picnic and swimming at Rio Blanco National Park
  • Jungle trek at Rio Blanco
  • Visit the Chiac family and learn to make local crafts
  • Optional morning bird walk
  • Garifuna drumming demonstration
  • Chocolate making lesson and lunch
  • Zip lining at Big Falls
  • Friends Across Borders Meeting (pen pals) 
  • Night nature walk at Big Falls 
Days 4-8 - Placencia

The tagline of Placencia is "Barefoot Perfect" - referring to the pristine nature of its 16 miles of sandy beaches.  This laid-back town is home to "The Sidewalk" - previously the Guinness Book of World Records title holder for "narrowest street in the world," but still a popular place to stroll amongst locals.

 

  • Monkey River boat tour en route to Placencia
  • Southern Barrier Reef - Laughing Bird Caye snorkeling 
  • Southern Barrier Reef - Silk Water Caye snorkeling 
  • Free time in the Caribbean paradise of Placencia
Day 9 - Depart Belize / Arrive US

 

  • Fly to Belize City and connect with your international flight
The Lodge at Big Falls

The Lodge at Big Falls is situated on the banks of the Rio Grande river in Belize's southern Toledo District. The property is located on a meander of the river with almost a mile of river frontage. There are views towards the Maya Mountains to the north west while the south eastern bank faces the village of Big Falls. However, there are no "big falls" in Big Falls. This is just the name of the village!

Laru Beya

Laru Beya Resort, whose name means "on the beach" in a local dialect, is located on the white beaches of the Placencia Peninsula. The resort is only three miles from the town of Placencia. The hotel features beautiful, air conditioned rooms with private patios. Highlights of the hotel include local art and furniture, wireless internet, a freshwater pool and its gorgeous beach-front location.

Why Belize?

It’s a wonderfully diverse, small country with a laid-back, relaxed pace
Belize may be a small country (just 300,000 people!), but it has so much to offer. Its natural diversity is stunning — ranging from lush mountains with tropical rain forests to the western hemisphere’s largest coral reef. With the lowest population density in Central America, your family is guaranteed a truly unspoiled, laid-back experience. You’ll take in many colorful sights and sounds while high in the mountains, learn about ancient civilization as you explore Maya artifacts and ruins and relax on Belize’s white sandy beaches as you swim, snorkel and kayak.
Second largest barrier reef in the world
Imagine you and your family exploring the mysteries of the underwater world in Belize’s Southern Barrier Reef, second in size only to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. One of the most diverse marine ecosystems in the world, the reef has over 250 species of tropical fish and over 60 species of coral. Snorkeling through gorgeous blue waters and over brightly colored coral, you may see a magnificent array of marine life — anything from eagle rays to dolphins, turtles to barracudas and more!
Ancient Maya ruins without the crowds
A fun-filled vacation exploring Belize’s rich history and culture is like no other experience. Belize is home to numerous ancient Maya cities, some dating back to 2000 BC. Your family will get to go off the beaten path and explore some of these magnificent ruins – without the crowds you often encounter at more well-known sites.
Rich multi-cultural heritage: English pirates, Spanish, Garifuna and others
Belize’s unique, diverse nature and history are complemented by its unique, diverse people. From its indigenous native culture to its Latin and Creole cultures, Belize’s friendly, laid-back population adds to the unique experience that is Belize. Our warm and welcoming guides will make your stay a wonderful, magical adventure for you and your family.

Why Belize with Thomson?

Explore the Mayan ruins at Lubaantun
Your family will have the chance to explore the Mayan archeological site of Lubaantun, built around 700-900 AD. The impressive structures here are made of meticulously hand-cut limestone blocks, with no visible mortar holding them together. Over the years, the blocks have begun to fall apart, which is where the name of the site comes from; “Lubaantun” means “place of the fallen stones.” There are eleven structures here, looming over five main plazas and three ball courts, and the site is believed to have served many different purposes – religious, administrative, political, commercial, athletic, ceremonial, etc. Lubaantun is also known for its famous crystal skull, allegedly discovered in the 1920s by the then-teenaged Anna Mitchell-Hedges, the daughter of a British adventurer/explorer. Much controversy surrounds the origin of the crystal skull, and it remains a mystery to this day.
The Friends Across Borders Program (pen pals)
As part of our Friends Across Borders program —a Thomson family favorite—we’ve arranged for a pen pal meeting this afternoon for the children who exchanged letters with a local student before leaving on their adventure. Through playing a game or sharing in a mutual activity, the kids all enjoy the eye-opening, and truly rewarding, experience of making a new friend from a culture very different from their own.
Snorkeling on the barrier reef
This amazing reef system is second in size only to the Great Barrier Reef of Australia, and over 250 species of tropical fish swim in its waters. Stay active by snorkeling and swimming, or take a break and relax on the white sand beaches. As you flipper around the Caribbean Sea, you’ll see magnificent fish in their natural habitat, and possibly eagle rays, moray eels, dolphins, turtles, barracudas and more.
a map of Belize: Mayans, Monkeys & Marine Life