Cable Highways to Treetop AdventuresIt begins as a leap of faith that quickly turns to a flight of fancy. A heartbeat after stepping from the elevated platform, you are soaring through the treetops of a tropical rainforest, passing through the realm of butterflies, black howler monkeys and blue-crowned motmots. In the jungles of Belize, cable highways in the trees carry riders through rich rainforest basins where jaguars still roam free, and across valleys where rivers play hide and seek as they flow into flooded caves, only to reappear miles away. These elevated adventures are safe and suitable for all, but far from tame.
- Best for: Everyone, from relaxing and beach travelers, to soft and rugged adventurers
- Best season to visit: Year round, drier from January to June
- Weather: Belize enjoys a sub-tropical climate moderated by Caribbean sea breezes. Winter temperatures occasionally dip below 70 during northerlies, while summers may reach into the 90s, with increased humidity and rain showers after June
Ziplining in Belize Overview
Zipline courses are found in two primary areas of Belize—in the foothills of the Maya mountains, and in the Caves Branch River basin. Of the two, the Caves Branch area is the more popular, both due to closer proximity to many resorts and the Caribbean coast, and the added attraction of river caves that provide additional opportunities for adventure.
Ziplining in Belize Tips
Don't let an apprehension of height stop you from experiencing aerial adventures. Modern ziplines have a number of built-in safety features, the harnesses are comfortable, and many courses begin with a shorter, lower “orientation line” that allows riders to gain confidence and assess their personal comfort levels.
Best Places to Zipline in Belize
A network of lines near the Nohoch Che'en Archaeological Park carry riders through the upper canopy of a sub-tropical rainforest. At Caves Branch Outpost, riders soar at heights of up to 120 feet above the ground. Courses near the Tapir Mountain nature Reserve combine zipline courses with cable walks and rappelling drops.
What to Pack for Ziplining in Belize
Most any type of sports clothing that provides a full range of motion will do, but it's best to avoid short shorts that might ride up under a harness. Go for closed-toe shoes that won't fall off during a ride. If you plan to snap photos or record videos during the ride, make sure your camera or smartphone has a tether or attachment point.
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Passport and/or Visa Requirements
A current passport, valid through your departure date, is required for entry into Belize. Your passport needs to have at least 1 blank page for the entry stamp. Proof of onward or return flights may be required at entry as well. No visa is required for stays less than 30 days. Upon departure from Belize, there is a departure tax of approximately $40.00 U.S. which should be included on your international ticket.
Check the entry/exit requirements here.
There are no required immunizations for entry into Belize, although you should check with your doctor and reference the Centers for Disease Control on recommended vaccinations.
Culture and Customs
Belize is a true melting pot of cultures, stretching back to the stone cities of the ancient Maya, and the Arawak roots of the Garfunkel dialect that are still heard through the country. British settlers arrived in the 1600s, and English remains the nation's official language. But Spanish influences are equally prevalent, and Mennonite, Creole, Lebanese, Chinese, and East Indian immigrants have all left their mark on the collective consciousness. Today, they are all just Belizeans, and everyone gets along in a society that places a high value on civility and inclusion. This is a country that doesn't need an excuse to dance and throw a party. Weekends are reason enough for celebration, and dozens of festivals, carnivals and concerts are staged throughout the year. Head up to the country into the rainforest and wooded mountains of the interior and you are in the land of Indiana Jones where thatch-roofed eco lodges serve as base camps for jungle hikes and inner tube drifts through river caves. Head offshore and island times takes over when you land on the offshore cayes. On Ambergris Caye a flipflop and tank top vibe permeates the beach town of San Pedro, where beach bikes are the preferred mode of transportation, and packed-sand streets are fronted by colorfully painted wooden shops and taverns.
Electricity, Phone and Internet Access
Belize electricity is 110 Volt/60 cycles and uses the same plug types as the U.S., so no converters are required.
Belize has a standardized seven-digit phone numbering system and a country code of 501.
Many hotels offer WiFi. Be sure to check with your mobile provider to see if International plans are available for phone and data usage while in Belize.
Bottled water is recommended in Belize and readily available for purchase and also supplied by some resorts.
Language & Currency
English is the official language, but Spanish is widely spoken. Other languages spoken are Maya, Garifuna, and Creole.
The BelizeDdollar (BZD) is pegged to the US dollar at 2:1 - always verify whether you are paying U.S. or Belize Dollars. It's easy to change U.S. dollars just about anywhere.
ATMs are available in many cities and accept major cards such as Visa, Mastercard, Cirrus, although cash will be dispensed in Belize Dollars.
Most businesses will accept U.S. cash without question. They usually give change in Belizean Dollars, though they may return U.S. change if you ask.
Belize is on Central Standard Time, 6 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (-6 GMT). Belize does not observe daylight saving time.
Location, Size and Population
Belize is located on the Eastern coast of Central America, along the Caribbean Coast. Its capital city is Belmopan.
Belize is bounded on the North by Mexico, South, and West by Guatemala, and the beautiful Caribbean Sea washes its 174-mile coastline to the East.
Belize has an area of 8,866 sq. miles including 266 sq. miles of islands.
The population of Belize is 367,177 (2016), while the island of Ambergris caye has an estimated 22,000, the area of Placencia approximately 1,500 and the area of Dangriga close to 10,000.