Hotel at a Glance: Black Orchid Resort
Located on the Belize River's scenic banks, Black Orchid Resort provides guests with a convenient base camp for excursions through the tropical jungle, the Caribbean Sea, or Belize City, which is just 18 miles (29 km) southeast. As part of your stay, you can choose one of four half-day tours: a trip to the baboon sanctuary to see black howler monkeys, a cruise down the Belize River, a nature trail expedition, or a crocodile-spotting excursion.
- Local fauna: iguanas, black howler monkeys, birds, and butterflies
- Nearby activities: Caribbean snorkeling or deep-sea fishing, bird-watching in the jungle, or visiting the Mayan site of Altun Ha
- On-site restaurant: The Black Orchid Restaurant features local produce and fresh seafood, including snapper and lobster
- Take a dip: in the outdoor freshwater pool
- In-room amenities: Guest rooms feature jungle-themed art and private patios with deck chairs
Burrell Boom, Belize: Tropical Rainforest near Belize City and Belize Barrier Reef
Burrell Boom is a picturesque river village situated less than 20 miles northwest of Belize City. Thanks to its dense rainforest, Burrell Boom supports a healthy eco-system of flora and fauna, including black howler monkeys, yellow-headed parrots, herons, and hummingbirds. The area is also known for its fruit wines, made from organic fruits grown in local vineyards; stop by a local winery to sample some.
The resort lies only 22 miles (36 km) from one of the country's most famous attractions: Altun Ha. The archeological site was once an important trading center and home to 10,000 Maya. Its iconic stepped pyramids appear on Belizean banknotes as well as on the label of Belikin beer, a local brew.
Farther south, Belize City forms a gateway to nearby islands, such as Caye Caulker and Ambergris Caye. These keys are surrounded by the Belize Barrier Reef, part of the second-longest stretch of coral in the world. Popular dive sites include shark-ray alley, where stingrays up to 4 feet wide glide between harmless nurse sharks. Another must-see site is the Great Blue Hole, a site that Jacques Cousteau declared one of the top 10 dive sites on earth; 130 feet below the surface lie massive dripstones.