Half of Belize is covered with tropical rainforest, more than 80% of which is under government protection. The rainforest is home to over 4000 species of tropical flowers, including 80 species of orchids, and over 500 species of birds. Caves dot the limestone karst landscape, and trails wind their way through the dense undergrowth to arrive at shady waterfalls, or colossal Mayan Ruins. Here are some of the activities that Pelican Beach can arrange for you on your Belize vacation:
- Start in Pelican Beach's backyard for residents and migrants of the coastal habitat - pelicans, cormorants, frigate birds, warblers, herons
- The pine savannas on the Southern Highway offer flycatchers, hawks, and the rare yellow-headed parrot.
- The denser forests of the reserve offer oropendolas, toucan, and the Keel-Billed Motmot.
- On the cayes, you will spot Magnificent Frigate birds, Brown Boobies, Osprey, Great Blue Herons, Mangrove warblers and even hummingbirds.
- All the nearby terrestrial reserves (Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, Mayflower Archaeological Reserve, Billy Barquedier Park, etc.) have well-maintained hiking trails where you can spot signs of wildlife everywhere, from jaguar tracks in the mud to the distant howl of the black howler monkey in the treetops above. You can spot plants that would cost a pretty penny in any floral shop growing wild right next to the trail.
- It is an amazing experience to walk down into the earth and marvel at the miracles of nature with massive stalactites reaching down, and stalagmites jutting from the cave floor. Belize has the largest cave system in Central America and the options for caving are based solely on your degree of comfort. Stand just inside the cave entrance at St. Herman's Cave, hike through a clear stream into the entrance of Actun Tunichil Muknal, or be awed by the collection of ancient pots at Chechem Ha.
- Hiking is not the only way to enjoy a cave. Float down a jungle river on an inflated inner tube, and pass through a labyrinth of caves, each as dark as night but filled with fascinating rock formations and Mayan artifacts. Learn about where the Mayas worshipped, where sacrifices took place and how they viewed caves as portals to the underworld.
- Towering even above the canopy, these remnants of the ancient Maya civilization are a reminder of the lost empire that flourished in Belize before the Europeans arrived. Watch birds fly over the treetops from the top of El Castillo at Xunantunich, see a sunset from the top of Caana at the Caracol site, or compare the ruin of Cahal Pech with the nearby modern-day town of San Ignacio.