With its beautiful beaches, abundance of local eateries, and easy access to fantastic snorkeling, scuba diving, and water-sports opportunities, it’s easy to find ways to spend your time on Ambergris Caye. But with even just one day on Belize’s largest island, you’ll be able to experience some of the best it has to offer. Here’s how.
Start your day off with a visit to the expansive Hol Chan Marine Reserve, a short boat ride south of Ambergris Caye. This popular snorkeling and diving area is known for its variety of tropical fish and coral, particularly in the Maya and Shark Ray Alley areas. A variety of options exist for visiting the reserve, with plenty of half- and full-day snorkeling trips; for something a little different, consider a tour by Snuba, a sort of hybrid scuba-snorkeling device with an air hose that allows even inexperienced divers to go deeper than they could with a regular snorkel.
In the afternoon, head back to shore for lunch. While you may want to spend the rest of the day lazing around on the beach, it's worth at least considering changing your perspective of Ambergris Caye by viewing it from the sky. Options include parasailing adventures suitable even for first-time fliers. If you’re willing to splurge, you can also hire a helicopter to take you on a private tour out over the Belizean Barrier Reef and the gargantuan Blue Hole, the world's largest oceanic sinkhole and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Devote your evening to trying out some local food. The San Pedro town center has all sorts of options, from locally caught seafood to empanadas made to order; it’s also a good spot to pick up a bottle of Belize’s famous Marie Sharp’s hot sauce. For a more immersive experience, you can join a cooking class and learn how to make Belizean fare yourself, including the ever-popular fry jacks (deep-fried dough). The carts at the Truck Stop, a food-cart pod made of shipping containers, are another great place to sample local delights.