Top Ten Reasons to Love Belize for Scuba Diving

Posted on Thursday, April 27th, 2017

Thanks to a combination of the reef, a white sandy seafloor, and crystal clear waters, Belize is one of the world’s best places to enjoy scuba diving.

Here are 10 reasons why you’ll love scuba diving in Belize:

Belize Blue Hole

Rated by Jacques Cousteau as one of his top 10 favorite dive sites in the world. Measuring some 300 meters across, the Belize Blue Hole sits above an enormous system of flooded caves and caverns. For experienced divers only.

Lighthouse Reef

The Belize Blue Hole lies in the center of Lighthouse Reef, but there are plenty of excellent dive spots around the reef itself, including Half Moon Wall, the Gorgonian Forest, and the Silver Cayes.

Gladden Spit

Located on the outer edge of the Belize Barrier Reef, Gladden Spit is part of a protected marine park. Measuring 15 miles by 6.5 miles, there are plenty of rewarding dive spots where divers can see unique species found nowhere else.

Whale Sharks

Every year during springtime, migrating whale sharks pass through Belize near Gladden Spit. The largest fish in the oceans, whale sharks pose no risk to humans, giving divers a truly unique opportunity to approach these gentle giants. To protect the whale sharks, only authorized tour operators are allowed to approach, and the number of divers in the area is strictly regulated.

Turneffe Atoll

Turneffe Atoll in the Rain

One of the top diving spots in the country, the Turneffe Atoll has several islands and lagoons brimming with beautiful spots ideal for diving.

Silk Cayes

A national marine park, the waters of Silk Caye near Gladden Spit have some spectacular walls and holes for divers to explore.

South Water Caye

There is a natural cut in the reef near South Water Caye, giving divers an excellent opportunity to see diverse marine flora and fauna.

Laughing Bird Caye

Another one of Belize’s national parks, the island is known for its excellent snorkeling. But divers benefit from crystal clear waters and a kaleidoscope of marine life.

Long Coco Spit

Approximately three miles from Laughing Bird Caye, this formation is ideal for novice divers. Perfect for observing enormous schools of fish and black coral.

The Wreck of Miss Pamela

Laughing Bird Caye by Kurt Repanshek Chabil Mar Belize Resort

In 2002, the Miss Pamela was deliberately sunk to create an artificial reef. Clear waters and an abundance of huge barracuda feeding on schools of fish make this a rewarding dive.

For more information about scuba diving in Belize or Placencia,  feel free to chat with our Concierge at: concierge@chabilmarvillas.com or contact our Reservations Manager at: reservations@chabilmarvillas.com. Or perhaps you would like to call toll free from the US or Canada: 1-866-417-2377.

 

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CNN Says to Visit the Belize Barrier Reef Right Now

Posted on Wednesday, April 26th, 2017

On April 24, 2017, the influential news channel CNN published a list of UNESCO World Heritage sites to visit. Published on the travel section of its popular news site CNN.com, the article written by Jen Rose Smith presented a snapshot of eight of the 55 UNESCO World Heritages currently classified as being “in danger,” including the Belize Barrier Reef.

Seven of the sites featured in the CNN article are on dry land, including the Everglades area of southern Florida and areas in Central and South America devastated by war and civil unrest. The Belize Barrier Reef is unique in that it is the only marine World Heritage site to be included in the article, a vast chain of beautiful islands, crystal clear water, coral reefs, and sandy atolls.

The Belize Barrier Reef is part of the second-largest barrier reef in the world after Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. Measuring more than 200 miles from north to south, the Belize reef includes picture-postcard-perfect islands with palm trees, white sand beaches, and tranquil lagoons that are ideal for stand-up paddling, kayaking, swimming, scuba diving, and snorkeling.

Other world-class destinations on the Belize Barrier Reef include Shark Ray Alley, a section of the enormous Hol Chan Marine Reserve that is a natural cut in the reef where vast schools of harmless nurse sharks and stingrays transit from the deep ocean to the gentler interior side of the Caribbean. The reef is also home to several protected nature areas, including Laughing Bird Caye National Park, one of the top places to snorkel and bird watch in the country.

Another famous feature of the reef is the Belize Blue Hole. Measuring some 300 meters across (985 feet), the Belize Blue Hole was created more than 10,000 years ago when rising waters at the end of the Ice Age submerged a vast series of caverns and caves. Famed French marine biologist Jacques Cousteau declared the Belize Blue Hole to be one of his top 10 favorite diving spots when he explored the area in 1971.

Chabil Mar

Chabil Mar is an award-winning resort located on the Caribbean coast of the Placencia Peninsula in southern Belize. Chabil Mar features elegantly appointed villas, a gourmet restaurant, a lush tropical garden, and a seafront pier ideal for enjoying meals under the stars.

The resort is conveniently located just a few miles from the Belize Barrier Reef and offer guests Belize vacation packages that include scuba diving and snorkeling on the reef. Chabil Mar also organizes diving and snorkeling tours during the springtime to see migrating whale sharks that visit Belize each year near Gladden Spit on the reef.

Visit our website www.chabilmarvillas.com for more information on Belize, and don’t hesitate to send us an email, or call US/CAN Toll Free: 1-866-417-2377, Local: (011-501) 523-3606, if you have questions or need help in planning a Belize vacation.

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Build Some Family Adventure Memories in Belize

Posted on Monday, April 24th, 2017

Families Love Belize

If you’ve been looking for the perfect place to enjoy a family vacation, including plenty of activities, a chance to get away from phones and screens, and a place to make some truly special memories, look no further than Belize. On April 20, 2017, Luxury Latin America published an article extolling the many virtues of enjoying a family vacation in Belize.

Luxury Latin America is a luxury travel blog with a strong focus on upscale vacation destinations throughout Latin America and Mexico, including in-depth articles on spirits, wine, and hot trends in tourism in the region. First established in 2007, Luxury Latin America is now the premier online publication for firsthand, authentic reviews of resorts, destinations, and trends in Latin America and Mexico.

The April 20 Luxury Latin America featured authentic photos of families visiting Belize, enjoying popular outdoor activities like climbing ancient Maya pyramids, jungle trekking with howler monkeys, snorkeling on the Belize Barrier Reef (the second-biggest barrier reef in the world), kayaking in beautifully pristine lagoons, and enjoying Belize’s signature cave tubing sport (floating on an inner tube through a series of caves). Highlighting the fact that Belize is just two hours from several southern cities in the United States, the Luxury Latin America article marveled at how many opportunities were available to families within such a small country (Belize).

Recognizing that Belize’s unique geography that includes hundreds of miles of Caribbean coastline in the east and thick, biodiverse jungles in the west, the Luxury Latin America article highlighted how families on vacation in this country get much more than a chance to swim in a pool while soaking up some sun. Family vacations in Belize benefit from adventure options, educational tours, learning about different cultures, causing families to bond together. And the fact that Belize is the only country in the region where English is the official language is an added boon.

“Families are warmly welcomed here in Belize,” said Larry France, marketing manager of Chabil Mar. “There’s plenty to do for everyone, and Belize is the perfect place to have a great time while making great family memories that will last a lifetime.”

Chabil Mar is a multiple award-winning and perennial TripAdvisor favorite resort located on the Placencia Peninsula in southeastern Belize. With luxury villas, a lush tropical garden, pool, and open air gourmet dining on its own private pier, Chabil Mar is the ideal resort for families to enjoy an unforgettable vacation in Belize.

Visit our website www.chabilmarvillas.com for more information on Belize, and don’t hesitate to send us an email, or call US/CAN Toll Free: 1-866-417-2377, Local: (011-501) 523-3606, if you have questions or need help in planning a Belize family vacation.

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Aurelio Martinez Celebrates 30 Years of Music

Posted on Wednesday, April 19th, 2017

Although Aurelio Martinez was born and raised in Honduras, he has become one of Belize’s lasting icons due to his iconic blending of traditional Garifuna music with more modern styles like rock, soul, blues, and New Orleans style jazz. On April 10, 2017, Martinez returned to the Bliss Stage in Belize City to celebrate the launch of his latest album with a live concert featuring a 15-piece band that included the Garifuna Collective.

Thirty years ago, Aurelio Martinez made his professional debut on an album that featured his signature style of blending traditional Garifuna music with modern genres. Martinez’s latest album called Darandi, which means 30 in Garifuna, contains 12 tracks, including a cover of the classic Paul Nabor song “Naguya Nei.” According to Martinez, Darandi represents the closing of one chapter of his musical life and celebrating his moving on towards new beginnings and experimentations with different musical styles.

The album Darandi was partly mixed in Belize in studios in Benque Biejo and Dangriga by Al Obando, a celebrated Belizean producer. According to Martinez, the album is a tribute to his close friend Andy Palacio, a native of Belize who recently passed away. Martinez met Palacio in Honduras and the two musicians collaborated on several projects. The album is also dedicated to Paul Nabor, whom Martinez has referred to as his musical “grandpa”, the Belizean musician who helped popularize Garifuna music worldwide.

Martinez has been a musical prodigy since childhood. At age 6, he fashioned his first guitar out of fishing line and driftwood. At age 15, Martinez received his first guitar, leading him to a lifetime of producing, writing, and performing music. Although he is primarily known for his singing, guitar playing, and percussion work, Martinez is also a skilled dancer, often performing traditional Garifuna steps during his musical performances.

Perhaps the most popular track on his latest album is Yalifu, the Garifuna word for pelican. Martinez has described how the lyrics “Pelican, lend me your wings so that I can fly,” refers to his childhood separation from his father when he was left behind in Honduras while his father went to work in the United States. Martinez has stated that he wants the song to represent bigger issues as well, dedicated to anyone separated from a loved one and longing to be reunited.

Chabil Mar

Chabil Mar is an award-winning resort located on the Placencia Peninsula in southern Belize and is close to many Garifuna centers such as the town of Dangriga and the villages of Hopkins and Seine Bight where visitors can experience the rich musical heritage of the Garifuna people.

Is Belize Worth Visiting?

Posted on Tuesday, April 11th, 2017

Is Belize worth visiting? Ask anyone who has ever visited Belize, and they’ll give you a resounding yes! Whether you want to explore ancient Maya cities, snorkel and scuba dive on the gorgeous Belize Barrier Reef, relax to the gentle rhythms of Caribbean life, hike through unspoiled rainforests, canoe down jungle rivers, or eat fresh-caught seafood, then Belize is the place for you.

Just in case you’re not convinced, here are 10 great reasons to visit Belize:

Scuba Diving

In the 1970s, celebrated marine biologist Jacques Cousteau visited Belize and instantly fell in love with the diving opportunities here, naming the Belize Blue Hole (sometimes known as the Great Blue Hole) as one of his top 10 favorite diving spots in the world.

Maya Caves and Cities

Belize was the heartland of the ancient Maya civilization and is now home to more than 600 sites, including sacred caves and enormous pyramids that are still the largest manmade structures in the country.

The Belize Barrier Reef

The second-largest barrier reef after Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, the Belize Barrier Reef is home to thousands of islands and atolls where you can sail, fish, scuba dive, snorkel, or simply enjoy a wonderful beachfront cookout.

Nature

More than half of Belize is a protected nature reserve, park, or animal reserve. Enjoy spotting rare avian species or some of Central America’s last remaining big cats as you travel through breathtakingly beautiful rainforests, jungles, wetlands, beaches, mountains, and rivers.

Hiking

Vast trackless wildernesses such as the Cockscomb Basin Nature Reserve give visitors a chance to reconnect with the great outdoors while admiring interesting wildlife species such as tapirs, giant iguanas, and monkeys.

Whale Sharks

There are no man-eating great white sharks in Belize, but you can enjoy the unforgettable experience of diving with whale sharks (the largest fish in the ocean) near Gladden Spit or schools of friendly nurse sharks in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve.

Hospitality

The dress code is basic, clocks are rarely consulted, and an easygoing barefoot way of life is the norm in Belize, a country with locals that are world-renowned for their friendliness, amiability, and warm hospitality.

Waterfalls and River

Whether it’s admiring the stunning vista from the base of Thousand Foot Falls (the highest waterfall in Central America) or canoeing down pristine waterways like the Macal River, Belize is a land with wonderful nature areas to explore and photograph.

The Food

Enjoy Central American favorites like rice and beans, Mexican classics like escabeche, British standards like hot cross buns, spicy Caribbean dishes, unique Garifuna foods such as cassava bread, and, of course, lots and lots of delicious seafood.

Islands

Whether you want to play castaway for a day or simply admire an unforgettable sunrise over the Caribbean, Belize has hundreds of gorgeous tropical islands.

Chabil Mar

A multiple award-winning luxury resort located right on the Caribbean coast of the Placencia Peninsula in southeastern Belize, Chabil Mar  offers Belize jungle and sea vacations so that visitors can experience a truly un-Belize-able experience.

Visit our website www.chabilmarvillas.com for more information on Belize, and don’t hesitate to send us an email, or call US/CAN Toll Free: 1-866-417-2377, Local: (011-501) 523-3606, if you have questions or need help in planning a Belize vacation.