Discover the Wonders of Southern Belize

Posted on Friday, January 8th, 2016


Discover Southern Belize in 2016

Southern Belize is the home of diverse cultures, societies, and ecologies. As travelers head south, they can witness the transition from citrus orchards and flat savannah land to the forested slopes that are home to modern Maya villages and ancient Mayan ruins. Lovely villages like Placencia and Hopkins offer a laid-back lifestyle, where local fishing and artesian traditions are still kept alive.

For visitors in search of adventure, there is plenty to explore in the jungles of Toledo District, replete with luxury resorts hidden in the remote corners of the rainforest. Offshore, the numerous cayes (islands) and atolls near the Belize barrier reef offer unparalleled fishing, scuba diving, snorkeling, and kayaking opportunities, a great chance to escape the crowds and higher prices found on the cayes in the northern part of Belize.

Top Places to Explore and Visit in Southern Belize

  • Garifuna culture – Southern Belize is the home to a unique people who still make a living fishing in small boats, working in small-scale agriculture, or handcrafting goods and art. Friendly and welcoming, Garifuna culture is also renowned for their love of dancing and music. The center of Garifuna culture is the town of Dangriga, with other iconic villages located in Hopkins, Placencia, and Sittee River.
  • Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Preserve – Home to the last surviving native jaguars of Central America, the Cockscomb Wildlife Preserve is also a great place to watch tropical birds in their native habitat.
  • Mayan Ruins – The Ancient Mayan Empire once ruled all of Belize, and today visitors can visit the ruins at Nim Li Punit or Lubantuum in Toledo District, or go on day trips from Placencia to see the mysterious Blue Creek Caves, also in Toledo District.
  • Placencia – Measuring 11 miles long, the Placencia Peninsula is a truly tropical oasis, with refreshing trade winds, and pristine beaches fronting the crystal clear waters of the Caribbean Sea.
  • The Belize Barrier Reef – Just a short boat ride away lies the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Belize Barrier Reef, the second largest coral reef in the world. Kayaking, diving, fishing, and snorkeling opportunities are unparalleled in this uniquely rich and diverse marine habitat.

Where to Stay in Southern Belize

In the ancient Mayan language, “Chabil Mar” meant “beautiful sea”. Today, the Villas as Chabil Mar live up to that name, with beautifully appointed villas on the gorgeous Placencia Peninsula, all facing the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea. Located just steps away from the picturesque Placencia Village, Chabil Mar has an on-site restaurant, free Wi-Fi, and a private beach with plenty of room to soak in the rays of sun in this special corner of paradise.

Visit our website for more information on southern 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.

5 Fun Things to do in Placencia, Belize

Posted on Wednesday, January 6th, 2016

Infographics Placencia TOP-5

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

Placencia Sidewalk Arts & Music Festival

Posted on Sunday, January 3rd, 2016

Placencia-Sidewalk-Art-Festival BelizeYou Should Definitely Attend The Placencia Sidewalk Arts & Music Festival

On February 13 and 14, Placencia Village will host the 13th annual Sidewalk Arts and Music Festival. The central sidewalk in town will be filled with photographs, paintings, crafts, vendors, clothing, wood carvings, sculptures, and homemade jewelry. With a wide variety of games, drinks, live music, and poetry readings, this popular festival celebrates the very best of Belizean arts and culture.

See also: 25 Things You Need to Know Before You Travel to Placencia Belize

Beginning at 10:00 am, the streets will come alive as artists and artisans from around Belize and the entire region come to display their masterpieces, handicrafts, and homemade works all along the central sidewalk in Placencia.

Family and friends will find plenty to do and see as they stroll from one end of the world’s narrowest main street (just four feet wide) to the other, with over 4,000 feet of festival featuring colorful art, games, live music, and mouthwatering food.

Watch this video and get a scoop of the festival:

The Placencia Sidewalk Arts and Musical Festival is a fantastic event to shop for Belizean art and explore the country’s vivacious music scene.

For more information on the Placencia Sidewalk Arts and Musical Festival, feel free to chat with our Concierge at: or contact our Reservations Manager Or perhaps you would like to call toll free from the US or Canada: 1-866-417-2377.

Gladden Spit & Silk Caye Marine Reserve

Posted on Tuesday, December 29th, 2015

belize whale shark diving at Gladden Spit in Placencia BelizeExplore the Natural Wonders of Gladden Spit & Silk Caye Marine Reserve in 2016

The waters off of the coast of Placencia in southeastern Belize were declared a marine reserve in 2001 to protect the rich bio-diversity of hundreds of species of sharks and tropical fish that inhabit the area. The lunar cycles of the Gladden Spit Marine Reserve bring enormous schools of fish to the area to spawn, releasing enormous clouds of eggs that attract top predators like whale sharks.

Although fishing is heavily restricted in the Gladden Spit Marine Reserve, visitors to the spectacular blue waters are permitted to engage in one of the most thrilling underwater experiences in Belize – diving with the whale sharks. Being filter feeders, whale sharks pose little danger to humans, allowing divers to interact and play with these beautiful creatures of the deep.

Whale sharks can grow up to 12 meters (41 feet) long, and weigh up to 66,000 pounds, making them the largest-known species of fish on the planet. Feeding on fish eggs, tiny plankton and microscopic shrimp known as krill, whale sharks have no teeth, which is why they can be approached by humans with minimal risk. Whale sharks are curious and playful animals, often approaching and interacting with divers. Because experiencing whale sharks is such a popular attraction, only licensed tour operators can bring divers to the area, arranging tours at specific times to get the best chance of spotting the sharks as they come close to the surface to feed.

Complete Guided Whale Shark Diving Package

If you’d like to swim with the sharks, Chabil Mar is now offering a special whale shark package that includes a guided diving experience with these amazing marine creatures. Located in the beautiful Placencia Village of southeastern Belize, Chabil Mar offer luxury accommodation at affordable prices, with gorgeously-appointed beachfront suites that face the beautiful turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea.

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

Belize Tourism Board invites Steve Harvey to host Costa Maya

Posted on Wednesday, December 23rd, 2015

steve-harvey in belize

Photo by

Last weekend, all eyes turned to Steve Harvey, who sparked international outrage after mistakenly announcing the wrong winner of the Miss Universe pageant. Expressing solidarity with the popular entertainer and comedian, the Belize Tourism Board sent a tweet to Harvey, inviting him to host the 2016 International Costa Maya Festival in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye.

Larry France, the marketing manager of Chabil Mar Villas in Placencia, expressed his hope that Steve Harvey will accept the Belize Tourism Board’s offer to come to the country and host the International Costa Maya Festival.

“Should Steve Harvey accept the Belize Tourism Board’s offer to come to the country, he should definitely visit Placencia,” said Mr. France. “Placencia was just rated by Travel and Leisure as one of the top destinations to see in 2016. With miles of pristine beaches facing the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea, Placencia is one of the best places on Earth to enjoy scuba diving, fishing, sailing, and snorkeling.”

Many local Belizeans also hope that Mr. Harvey will take up the Belize Tourism Board’s offer to host the International Costa Maya festival.

“Once Mr. Harvey has finished hosting the International Costa Maya festival in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, he can explore and experience some of the world’s best scuba diving off the coast of the Placencia Peninsula or visit the world-renowned Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary which is home to over 150 square miles of tropical rainforest that preserve some of the last endangered jungle jaguars in Central America,” said France. “Mr. Harvey can then relax and unwind in one of the luxury villas at Chabil Mar while sipping on a delicious cocktail as he enjoys an unparalleled view of the beautiful Caribbean Sea.”

Chabil Mar is a privately owned resort located in the Stann Creek District of Belize. It opened its doors in 2005 and has built an international reputation since that time. Historically, Chabil Mar—Maya for “Beautiful Sea”—is nestled between a Garifuna settlement and the former Creole fishing village of Placencia and in close proximity to ancient Maya ruins, rainforests, jungles and some of the best scuba and deep-water diving in the Western Hemisphere.

For more information about the resort, visit or call (011 501) 523–3606. If calling from the U.S. or Canada, use Chabil Mar’s toll-free number: 1-866-417-2377.