If I wasn’t a good little Atheist I’d probably think we’ve landed in The Garden of Eden, ultimate Paradise, AKA Caye Caulker, Belize. (Forbidden fruit is Pirate Rum Punch and I’ve got no self control.) Just a quick ferry ride from the mainland is this chilled out island that’s been scraped straight off a postcard. There are no cars allowed on the island and the locals get around in golf carts, making their drive by “heyyy beautiful girl in the red shirt” super efficient. (Brit got told “Hey Gurl, I like your boobs” today.) The sun is perpetually shining, the water is the clearest, most mesmerising shade of aqua you can imagine and the rum punch flows through the laid back Rasta vibe. As soon as we landed Brit lost her metaphorical shit and has been on cloud nine ever since and it’s not hard to understand her enthusiasm.
We spend our days lazing at “The Split,” The northern part of the island where a giant storm split the island in two and is now a big open pier surrounded by an all day bar aptly named “The Lazy Lizard” where everyone seems to congregate for the day. Nights are spent gorging ourselves on Lobster. Lobster whole. Lobster Burrito. Lobster Nachos. Lobster Kebab. No lobster stone remains unturned. There’s a restaurant called Wish Willy’s which is basically a man’s backyard with some picnic tables on the sand. Willy is an absolute hulk of a black man who is almost always a combination of under the influence but my god does he run a tight ship. There’s no such thing as menus at Willly’s. Walk in. Willy will bring you something to drink (It’s usually Rum Punch and it’s always deadly) then he tells you not to worry, he’ll look after you and next minute you’ve got a plate full of lobster and fish on your table you didn’t know you ordered. Its always a surprise and It’s always phenomenal, and It’s always the same price. Drunk Lobster eating is becoming a common occurrence these days (I am definitely not complaining)
Now I’m lucky that we decided to take a night Snorkel the evening BEFORE Mick Fanning’s Shark encounter, because I can guarantee Brit and I wouldn’t be jumping in the ocean a kilometre off shore in the middle of the night to swim with the creatures of the night. But my god am I glad we did! Nighttime is awesome for seeing all the little critters you don’t see much of during the day and so armed with a little torch, we jumped into the ocean for our nighttime adventure. We saw Lobsters, Crays, Crabs, Octopus (even one little guy with only 3 tentacles left 😦 .. ) and probably the best part-Bioluminescence. For a good ten minutes we floated in the dark, all torches turned off, and stared at the mesmerising beauty of the dark ocean illuminated by thousands of micro critters. I think being awestruck by the light display had us all momentary forgetting the sea lice attack we’d all just encountered (Have you ever HAD an army of sea lice in every part of your swimmer bottoms? Because we have.) We climb back on board into the still night covered with bites from the onslaught but with huge grins. The captain doles out some Rum Punch (Seriously, it’s inescapable) and we head back to shore.
The next morning it’s time to jump back in and see everything in the light of day. We spend our whole day cruising around, swimming alongside giant sea turtles, stingrays and even got swept up in a little shark feeding frenzy. Though noting could compare to the LIFE GOAL of swimming with Manatees. We’d been told we had a pretty good chance of finding one…. though it’s usually 50/50 and we were hopeful! After a few stop at their usual hangout we were starting to feel uncertain another boat signals they’re in the area. Brit and I haphazardly throw on fins and a snorkel and jump in and THERE THEY ARE! No hunting required-there’s two of these amazing creatures just meters away from us. At about 12 feet, these Manatees are simply breathtaking to watch. They cruised around with us curious humans for a good half hour, sometimes getting so close you could look into their little eyes and feel them staring back at you. They’re the most majestic, impressive creatures I’ve ever had the ultimate pleasure of being around. (And remember, We saw giant leatherback turtles giving birth and hatching their young.) This was a definite game changer. Short of seeing the Loch Ness Monster we ticked all the aquatic boxes that day. (I’m not worried, we’re moving to Scotland, Nessie is in reach.) How do you possibly top that day? Head back to shore, pull up a chair at sunset and eat your weight in lobster and cocktails, thats how.
And so go the days… swimming, sunning, eating, drinking, reading. We are now professional hammock dwellers and Lobster connoisoeurs. There’s also a program on the island for stray dogs that get veterinary treating, vaccinations, food and hopefully re-homing. As a tourist, you can go to the shelter, pick a dog and take to for a walk around the island. So you can imagine how we spend our mornings-Brit is in Doggy Heaven.
We’ve already extended our time in Belize and the days just keep getting added. With just over a week left, we’ve decided to capitalise on our time here before heading back to Guatemala.
Oh, I realised I haven’t used any promised corny puns…
This place is UNBELIZABLE!!!!!!