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Tucked away in the Mountain Pine Ridge area is Barton Creek Cave, a wet cave that offers canoeing and a chance to see Maya ceramics and calcified skeletons of ancient Maya. If you want adventure, the drive here alone should get you ready for this cave expedition.

One of the most interesting discoveries was a necklace composed of perforated animal finger bones and a carved bone. The carving depicts a seated figure with his hands across his waist and legs facing forward.

Everyone is family here, from the iguanas and agoutis that wander along the pathways, to the zookeepers and maintenance crew, and the harpy eagles… Within these 29 acres of a forest oasis within tropical savannah, you will meet over 150 animals that call it home. It’s an experience that will forever shift your views on zoos, plus it’s all accessible by wheel chair!

Discover the Belize Zoo, home to the rehabilitated, orphaned and rescued wildlife of Belize!

As a tropical mecca for biodiversity, the wetlands, jungles, rivers and seas make Belize a haven for the most exotic wildlife residents, including: tapirs, jaguars, spider monkeys, keel-billed toucans, scarlet macaws, and more!

Be acquainted with the wildlife of the jungles without being in the jungles at the Belize Zoo…

Meet “Lindo,” a rescued jaguar who now serves as one of the Zoo’s “jaguar ambassadors.” You can get up close and personal with him in a unique experience called the “Lindo Link.”

“Luck” is the universal theme for the zoo animals that have been rescued and relocated here… You can find a little story of each animal as you tour the grounds. Get the VIP treatment. Why stand outside, when you can go in?

Your zookeeper guide will take you on a truly remarkable tour of some of the animals. Feed the very inquisitive Keel-billed Toucan (Belize’s National Bird), or get your photo taken next to a Tapir, our magnificent National Animal!

Think you’ve seen it all? How about experiencing wildlife at night? Sign up for a nocturnal tour of the Zoo and get a whole new perspective while the forest comes alive around you.

The Zoo even has a place to rest after an exciting day of wildlife encounters. The Tropical Education Center/Zoo Lodge, located a mile up the road from the Zoo itself, sits on 84 acres of tropical savanna, and provides a variety of accommodations and meals.

A haven for the endangered jaguar, Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary covers 128,000 acres of rainforest in the Cockscomb Range of the Maya Mountains. With the neighboring Bladen Nature reserve to the south, jaguars have a combined 250,000 acres to roam free of worry from poachers. This haven makes Belize the most jaguar-populated country in the world.

Want to get a glimpse of a jaguar? The best way for a chance to see one is by going on an evening guided tour. If night hiking and giant predators are not for you, there are plenty of animals to see during the day, including pumas, margays, ocelots, kajous, deer, peccaries and tapirs. Not to mention birds, Cockscomb has over 300 different species at any given time, including Keel-Billed Toucan, King Vulture, several hawk species and scarlet macaws. As a side note, Cockscomb is also home to several bugs and insects, so be sure to bring bug spray and long clothing.

Columbia Forest Reserve is one of the largest protected areas of rainforest in Central America. Just north of San Jose village, the area is known for its Karst terrain, which is made up of irregular limestone, sinkholes (some are 800 feet deep), fissures, underground streams and caves. With an elevation that varies from 1,000 to over 3,000 feet, the ecosystem is very diverse. This tropical rainforest has a diverse wildlife community.

The Community Baboon Sanctuary spans 20 miles and is home to over a thousand howler monkeys, birds and other mammals. The sanctuary was started by a group of local farmers in 1985 to protect the howler monkeys, who at the time were hunted and near extinction. Get ready for a loud but good time if you visit here.



Known as one of Belize’s top birding spots, Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary (pardon the pun) spans 16,400 acres and includes more than 3,000 acres of lagoons, swamp and marsh. Take a canoe for a close-up look at crocodiles, iguanas, turtles, coatis and (depending on luck and time of year) the jabiru stork. With a wingspan of up to 12 feet, the jabiru is the largest flying bird in Central and South America. Some say they’re bigger than some of our airplanes.

While birding is great any time of year down here, the peak time is the dry season from November to May. At any time of year, even on a one- to three-hour tour, you’re likely to see 20 to 40 different species of birds everything from snowy egrets and snail kites to ospreys and black-collared hawks. There are two types of duck, Muscovy and black-bellied whistling, and all five species of kingfishers. So many birds, no matter how much time you spend here.

Not in the mood to hike around looking at birds? You can rent canoes, bikes, even horses to see your feathered friends. The Belize Audubon Society manages the sanctuary, and the visitor center has free trail maps.

Noj Kaax Meen Elijio Panti National Park, like other renowned nature preserves scattered throughout Belize, is blessed with both natural wonders and ancient mysteries, with the added touch of lush jungles and wildlife, making it a prime explorer’s location.

Travels in this over 16,000 acres of preserved jungles, rivers, streams, medicinal trails and Ancient Maya ceremonial (underworld) caving system, will reveal evidence of Belize’s Ancient Maya residents, such as potteries, etc.

The cave was named after Mr. Elijio Panti, a local spiritual and herbal healer, who died at the age of 103 in 1996.  



Named for its giant Guanacaste trees, Guanacaste National Park is our smallest national park. The trees are more than 100 feet high and are filled with tropical birds like the smoky brown woodpecker, black-headed trogons, red-lored parrots and white-breasted wood wrens. If you’re looking for a small park with big attractions, Guanacaste is for you.

With 7,087 acres of preserved low and highlands, Mayflower Bocawina National Park is one of the best choices for leisure or adventurous explorations. Located on the eastern end of the Maya Mountains next to the Sittee River Forest Reserve in southern Belize, this national park is a connecting region between the Maya Mountains and the coastal regions. This landscape features numerous natural waterfalls for both leisure and adventure seekers, such as: Bocawina Falls, Three Sisters Falls and Antelope Falls. Take a 10 minute or 1 1/2 hour hiking trail to these extremely aesthetic wonders and if you’re up for the challenge, rappel from atop and enjoy the remainder of the day in the streams below. Inside Mayflower, you’ll also discover three ancient Maya sites: Mayflower Maya site, T’au Witz and Maintzunum. 

Located in the highlands of the southern zone of western Belize, the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve offers cool temperatures and reveals splendid natural monuments. Within its 300,000 acres of protected pine forests, you will find sites including Thousand Foot Falls, the largest fall of Belize and the Central American region, as well as the cave Rio Frio, a quarter-mile cave, to name a few and the scenic Rio-on Pools and Big Rock Waterfall.

Expeditions can be carried out by mountain bike, on foot or on horseback (horses for hire on site). Venture among the pines to examine the colorful vegetation, various bird species and other animal life such as tapir, cougar, jaguar and ocelot. The Pine Ridge is the region par excellence to reconnect with nature, so enjoy!

The Rio Frio Cave is considered one of the best caving systems throughout Belize. With a length of around a quarter mile, there is no shortage of natural wonders along the way. Explore the many natural fresh-water pools, waterfalls and stalactite formations. This is one of the top attractions within the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve and is easily accessed at the entry point of the reserve.

The view of the entry of the cave is in itself amazing, standing 65 feet tall. What awaits inside is nature at its most spectacular forms. Take a trip here and be captivated by the pristine wonders of Belize. 

Take a boat tour of one of the wildest, most remote National Parks in the country. Located in the Southern District, Sarstoon-Temash National Park is between the Temash and Sarstoon rivers and is home to rare animals, like the white-faced capuchin monkey and jaguar. There are also over 200 species of birds, ocelots and tapirs, among others. The only way to see the area is by boat, so hopefully you’ll see a jaguar.

Located in Corozal District, Shipstern Nature Reserve is a 31-square-mile tropical rainforest, with more than 300 different species of birds awaiting your discovery. With 13 species of egrets, American coots, keel-billed toucans, fly-catchers, warblers and several species of parrots, it’s safe to say that if you can’t find the bird you’re looking for, you may not be looking hard enough.

Originally a self-sustaining business devoted to the exportation of butterflies, this 22,000-acre reserve protects a wide array of habitats, from wetlands and lagoons to wet and dry tropical forests. Shipstern is home to all five cat species found in Belize, the endangered Baird’s Tapir, some 300 species of birds, including wood stork nesting sites, and a myriad of other plant and animal species.

The reserve boasts a one-of-a-kind observation tower that stands approximately 40 feet above the forest canopy, providing visitors with an excellent view of the Corozal Bay, the Forest Canopy and the Shipstern Lagoon.

If birds aren’t all you want to see, no worries, Shipstern has plenty of pumas, jaguars and raccoons to observe. Plus, there’s a butterfly farm at the visitor’s center. Most find this little farm quite intriguing. There’s also a Mahogany museum and botanical trail for your exploration. It’s safe to say that if you like nature, you’ll love Shipstern Nature Reserve.

Not to be confused with the Great Blue Hole, St. Herman’s Blue Hole National Park has a natural turquoise pool that’s part of a river system. Great for a nice swim, the area is surrounded by moss and lush vegetation.

When you’re finished taking a dip, head into the St. Herman’s cave to explore. This cave isn’t for the faint of heart, and a guide must accompany you. If this seems like too much, no worries, swimming is fun for everyone.


Experience The Adventure

Don’t just see the wonder of Belize, Experience it! From zip-lining through the jungle to standing in ancient mayan ruins to relaxing on the beach, there is something for everyone in Belize.

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