Unbeknown to many, Thanksgiving has become an unofficial holiday celebration in Belize. Perhaps it’s because we have so many American visitors and residents in Belize, or perhaps it’s because the Turkey is actually a native bird of Central America that were farmed by the ancient Maya! Either way, we love it just as much as our North American friends and this time of year always gets us thinking about all the things we are thankful for…
What list of thanks would be complete without a mention of our most beautiful Barrier Reef. Roughly 185 miles long, it is the largest and most intact reef system within the Northern Hemisphere and is home to no less than 7 marine reserves, over 400 cayes, and 3 atolls. Since 1996 it has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it attracts visitors from all over the world. It doesn’t how many times we see it, it never fails to take our breath away!
It might seem unusual that we have this on our list of thanks, but did you know that the ancient Maya invented chocolate? Maya Kings, along with the average Maya, consumed copious amounts of chocolate thousands of years ago. In fact, evidence suggests that they had chocolate at every meal, breakfast, lunch and dinner! You can find Cacao Trees growing across Belize and as such, you’ll find some of the best chocolate in the world here. Here on Ray Caye you won’t be able to resist our delicious cacao-based cocktails and treats!
Blessed with a beautiful tropical climate, it’s perhaps no wonder that the ancient Maya worshipped Sun Gods as the sun shines in Belize almost every single day! Sure, a standard ‘weather in Belize’ search will tell you that we have a rainy season from June to October, but the truth is even on the rainiest of days the sun almost always still shines for a few hours. We have a delicious average yearly temperature of 80F (27C) and the reality is that there is no ‘bad’ time to come to Belize as the weather is almost always’ sunsational’!
Belize is home to an incredible amount of wildlife and often feels like Mother Nature’s paradise. From the rainforest to the sea, there is so much nature to embrace and enjoy. Never seen a Jaguar? We are home to the world’s first-ever recognized Jaguar Preserve. A Toucan? That’s our national bird! What about a Manatee? Belize is home to a sub-species of the West Indian manatee, one of four living species of manatees. And let’s not forget we are also home to over 500 fish species, and the very noisy Howler Monkey!
Last, but definitely not least, we are so thankful for our staff! Call us biased but we think we have some of the best staff in Belize and we know that our guests agree with us. Some of our ‘island family’ have been with us on Ray Caye for many years and every member of our team is such a valuable part of what makes our Belize island home so incredibly special.