An adventurerís paradise, Belize is on the Caribbean coast, nestled between Mexico and Guatemala, and offers an intriguing mix of tropical forests and wildlife, majestic mountains, mysterious Maya temples, and diving and fishing experiences beyond compare. In a single day you can go from tropical forest to the longest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere. more...
For the most part, only a small portion of the world's tourist population have been to Belize; that has kept Belize's Barrier Reef, Maya ruins and pristine rain forest "unspoiled" for all to enjoy.
Belize is a country of various culture, language and ethnic groups. Approximately 200,000 people in Belize consist of Creole, Garifuna, Mestizo, Spanish, Maya, English, Mennonite, Lebanese, Chinese, and Eastern Indian. Due to racial harmony and religious tolerance, all of these different elements have mixed and blended successfully, and Belize has gained a widespread reputation for its friendly peoples.
Belize is an ideal place to appreciate the tropical environments and ancient history of Central America. Visit fantastic Mayan ruins, hike and canoe in the jungle, explore beautiful caves and snorkel over the world's second largest barrier reef.
Accommodations in Belize range from luxury 5-star condominiums to 1 room guesthouses.
The unit of currency is the Belize Dollar (BZD), which is fixed against the US$ as BZ$2 = US$1. Most tourist resorts, hotels, restaurants and tour operators accept US currency and travellers cheques. Credit cards are also accepted, and most banks in Belize City and Belmopan will advance cash against Visa or MasterCard. When using credit cards most establishments will add a 5% service charge to the bill. First Caribbean International Bank has several ATMs in Belize City.
New Year's Day (01Jan); New Year's Holiday (02Jan); Baron Bliss Day (06Mar); Good Friday (14Apr); Holy Saturday (15Apr); Easter (16Apr); Easter Monday (17Apr); Labor Day (01May); Commonwealth Day (22May); National Day (11Sep); Independence Day (21Sep); Americas' Day (Colombus Day) (09Oct); Garifuna Day (20Nov); Bank Holiday (01Dec); Christmas Day (25Dec); Boxing Day (26Dec).
Visitors to Belize require a valid passport and in some instances a visa may be required. Travelers are welcome to stay in Belize for up to 30 days prior to requesting an extension to their visit.
United States and Canadian citizens, nationals of Caricom countries and of the European Community member nations (Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Denmark, Ireland, UK, Greece, Spain, Portugal, Austria, Finland, Sweden) do not require visas.
Visas are required for nationals of the following countries: Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Angola, Argentina, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Bosnia, Brazil, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Colombia, Cuba, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Haiti, Honduras, India, Japan, Korea (North and South), Libya, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Ukraine and Zaire.
The following category of persons may be granted by the Belize Immigration Department extensions of up to three (3) months at a time. These three months would be after the thirty day period given by the Immigration Officer at the port of entry.
22,965 sq km (8,867 sq miles)
Belizean dollar (BZD)
Belize Head of state
Queen Elizabeth II, represented by a governor Prime minister: Dean Barrow
English (official), Spanish, Mayan, Garifuna (Carib), Creole
307,000 (UN, 2009)
Belize Telephone codes