Popular Topics

Trip Report

Belize Itinerary 5 Days

This is our Belize 5 day itinerary of adventure-packed road trip experience. We believe we created the best Belize itinerary for such a limited time that we could spend in that beautiful country.

  • Xunantunich's El Castillo Pyramid+ 3
  • Mayan Ruins of Cahal Pech
  • Big Rock Falls
  • Belize Itinerary 5 Days
happily ever exploring
About Me:Hey there! We’re Aleah & Seth. One of us has always had a passion for adventure, while the other knew nothing much outside of our area code. Soon after meeting, he swept her off her feet, and she swept him into the wonderful world of cons... read more

North AmericaBelize5 days / August 2016

Highs & Lows

Exploring a secluded private island & snorkeling the Belize Barrier Reef

Wishing we had more time on the coast

Itinerary Overview

Belize offers lush jungles, little towns tucked into her hills, endless offshore cayes, the largest barrier reef in the northern hemisphere, and endless opportunities for adventure. We spent six magical days exploring the nation on an epic road trip, and checked some major adventures off of our bucket list along the way. 

  • Day trip: Belize City
    Capital City, Mayan Ruins, & Great Sea Food
  • 4 Nights: San Ignacio
    Mayan Ruins, Caves, Waterfalls & Nightlife
  • 1 Night: Dangriga
    Private Island & Belize Barrier Reef
Belize City - Capital City, Mayan Ruins, & Great Sea Food

Belize City

Capital City, Mayan Ruins, & Great Sea Food

As soon as we landed, we picked up our rental car and set out to get our Belizean road trip underway. 

Altun Ha Rockstone Pond:
Just 30 minutes north of the Phillip Goldson International Airport lies Belize City’s closest ruin, Altun Ha Rockstone Pond. Here is a great place to get your first taste of the country's Mayan history. We explored temples, pyramids, and the ancient manmade lagoon for which the site is named. 

Belize City:
We then headed into Belize City and snapped a quick photo with the iconic (and highly instagrammable) Belize Sign, before exploring the Baron Bliss Lighthouse. This structure was built in 1885 and dedicated to a man that never stepped foot on Belizean soil, but left his fortune to the nation after fishing her waters for several weeks on his private yacht. We indulged in a dinner of fresh seafood at Celebrity Restaurant and Bar before making the drive south to San Ignacio

San Ignacio - Mayan Ruins, Caves, Waterfalls & Nightlife

San Ignacio

Mayan Ruins, Caves, Waterfalls & Nightlife

San Ignacio - Mayan Ruins, Caves, Waterfalls & Nightlife - Mayan Ruins of Cahal Pech
Mayan Ruins of Cahal Pech
San Ignacio - Mayan Ruins, Caves, Waterfalls & Nightlife - Big Rock Falls
Big Rock Falls
San Ignacio - Mayan Ruins, Caves, Waterfalls & Nightlife - Mayan ruins of Xunantunich3+
Mayan ruins of Xunantunich

Mayan ruins of Xunantunich: 
These ancient ruins are only accessible by using a hand crank ferry to cross the Mopan river, which makes the experience an adventure from the start. Xunantunich translates to Sculpture of Lady, and it's long rumored that visitors may see the ruin's "Stone Woman" namesake dressed all in white with red glowing eyes ascend the stairs of El Castillo (the tallest of the site's pyramids) and disappear into a wall.

Mayan ruins of Cahal Pech: 
A short drive from Xunantunich stand the ruins of  Cahal Pech. Climbing the steep stairs to the top of Cahal Pech's various structures is a must when you visit. There are multiple theories as to why the stairs are so steep but our favorite is that, in order to stay humble while approaching The Gods, you are all but crawling to the top of the ruin. The secret passages and tunnels found throughout are like a maze and are nothing short of awe inspiring. 

Blue Hole National Park:
This greenspace is the home of some great hiking trails as well as Belize's inland Blue Hole. We recommend booking a tubing tour through the nearby cave. The waters a little chilly, but the experience is an absolute blast!

ATM Cave:
This place is the site of incredible artifacts from long ago and even contains the remains of a young girl who may have been a victim of a sacrifice. This trip is a little physically and mentally involved being that you need to swim at the entrance and will be in some dark tight places at times, but it's not to be missed! Be sure you book your tour in advance, as this experience requires a guide and fills up fast.

Big Rock Falls: 
Tucked away into Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve, lives a series of cliffs and waterfalls that make for a thrilling afternoon of cliff jumping and/or relaxing in the river! 


- San Ignacio Market: This market was our go-to spot for trinkets, fresh fruits, and mouth watering food.  
- Benny's Kitchen: This charming spot serves up quintessential Belizean cuisine to visitors and locals alike. Be sure to try the traditional dish known as pibil! 
- Table Rock Jungle Lodge: Even if you aren't staying here, we highly recommend making a reservation at Table Rock for a candle-lit farm to table dinner. 

-Hit the San Ignacio Casino for a little late evening fun.
-Head over to party at Thirsty Thursdays for some drinks and dancing at this awesome outdoor bar.

Dangriga - Private Island & Belize Barrier Reef


Private Island & Belize Barrier Reef

Dangriga - Private Island & Belize Barrier Reef - Snorkeling the Belize Barrier Reef
Snorkeling the Belize Barrier Reef
Dangriga - Private Island & Belize Barrier Reef - South Water Caye Private Island
South Water Caye Private Island
Dangriga - Private Island & Belize Barrier Reef - Before reaching the reef, there is a bed of sea grass that sting rays can often be spotted blending into.1+
Before reaching the reef, there is a bed of sea grass that sting rays can often be spotted blending into.

South Water Caye: 
After a short (40 minute) boat ride from Pelican Beach Resort's inland location in Dangriga, you'll arrive in a palm tree dotted paradise. Enjoy a day of relaxation and adventure on your private, remote island 14 miles off the coast of Belize. This tropical resort is equipped with all the amenities (and beachside booze) you'll need to have a memorable stay, and the Belize Barrier Reef lies only about 40 yards off the beach! While snorkeling the reef we saw vibrant corals, dozens of different fish species, and a sting ray hiding out in the sea grass. 

Q & A

  • What would you have changed?

    We wish we would've lengthened our stay in Belize so we could've spent more time exploring the coast. We also wish we would've made the trip to visit the Mayan ruins of Tikal just across the border in Guatemala.

  • Restaurant recommendations?

    After exploring the Mayan ruins of Xunantunich, we stopped at Benny's Kitchen for lunch. Four years later, Seth is still raving about both the deliciousness of our meal and the authenticity of the venue. We recommend ordering the pibil, a traditional dish of pork wrapped in banana or plantain leaves and cooked underground. If you're a particularly adventurous eater, you can try the bamboo chicken, which is actually iguana or the gibnut, which is a large rodent.

  • Tips you would give a friend?

    Don't be afraid to ask the locals for recommendations on what to do and where to go. Our bar tender at Table Rock Jungle Lodge gave us such good tips, and his recommendations made our trip all the more memorable. He even drew us maps to help us find different locations around San Ignacio.

  • Packing tips?

    Pack a variety of different clothes that can be layered, and don't forget a raincoat for unexpected showers. Bug spray and reef safe sunscreen are also a must.

  • Transportation Tips?

    In order to make the most of your time in Belize, we highly recommend renting a car. The country is so diverse, and having a car made bringing our road trip itinerary to fruition a breeze!

  • Any surprises?

    At the time, our GPS was spotty and we did not have international phone plans, so we relied a great deal on written directions and hand-drawn maps. This form of navigation was a bit stressful at certain times, but looking back, we wouldn't have it any other way.


  • Table Rock Jungle Lodge: Just outside of San Ignacio is an eco-resort situated on the banks of the Macal River, that we could not recommend more. Table Rock Jungle Lodge offers private cabanas, farm to table dining, an on-site pick-your-own farm, and complimentary access to canoes and tubes so guests can explore the area via the Macal River.

  • Pelican Beach Resorts: If you are looking to spend some time on a remote, private island adjacent to the Belize Barrier Reef, book a cottage at Pelican Beach Resort's offshore location - South Water Caye!