Vegan vacations in Belize

To paraphrase one of our operators, taking a vacation in Belize is like being James Bond, Lara Croft and David Attenborough all rolled into one. And now weíre pleased to tell you that you can explore Adventure Central while confidently sticking to an entirely plant-based diet. With vegan cuisine yet to really flourish here, the best way to see Belize is with a specialist vegan travel operator that has built connections along every step of the itinerary so that you can sit down at each mealtime with full confidence.
Vegan Belize vacations typically last around a week, and encompass a raft of thrilling activities. One day youíll be snorkelling over reefs with brilliantly coloured coral gardens, alongside manatees, stingrays and sharks. The next day you can be hiking through dense jungle where tapirs and jaguars roam, or through pine forests and wetlands, pausing to swim in clear pools below waterfalls. Belize is a leader in protecting its impressive biodiversity, much of it rare and endangered. It has superb national parks, wildlife reserves and impressively low rates of deforestation.
Other highlights on a trip here might include scenic boat trips out to the tiny, tropical island of Caye Caulker, liberally fuelled with rum punch or virgin mojitos. On the island you might snorkel in marine reserves, stroll barefoot on a silky beach, take up your paddle for some kayaking, or join in with an easygoing Vinyasa flow yoga session Ė no experience necessary, of course.
Actun Tunichil Muknal (ATM), also known as the Cave of the Crystal Sepulchre, sounds like something drawn from a movie. Reached with a short trek through the jungle where capuchin and howler monkeys can be seen, this mysterious Maya archaeological site contains the calcified skeletons of unfortunate sacrificial victims, ancient ceramics and stoneware, and fascinating rock formations that itís thought the Mayans used to cast silhouettes onto the walls. Ranked the number one sacred cave destination in the world by National Geographic, itís a must-see on any tour of Belize.

Then there is Caracol, in the foothills of the Maya Mountains. This vast city was one of the largest in the Maya civilisation, sprawling across some 200 square kilometers and with 35,000 structures, far more than Tikal in Guatemala. The main site spans three plazas that are surrounded by ball courts, an acropolis, temples, altars and palaces, and is dominated by the Caana (Sky Palace) which is the tallest manmade structure in the country. Itís a spellbinding place to spend an afternoon.

Eating vegan in Belize

Like most countries, Belize has a long way to go before it can truly be considered a vegan friendly destination, but getting around as a vegan here isnít difficult if youíre led by a vegan travel expert familiar with each destination, and with a solid track record in sourcing delicious Belizean delicacies that you can have full confidence are vegan through and through.
Much of the food that youíll see on your plate here is based around staples such as rice, beans, steamed vegetables and lashings of juicy tropical fruits. You wonít find much in the way of creativity, but what you will get is certain to be tasty and of course in Belize, as with most parts of Central and South America, the food will usually be organic and locally sourced because that simply is the only real option here.
One treat to look out for in Belize is the ubiquitous banana bread, wonderfully gooey and scrumptious. Unfortunately in most cases itís not vegan, however if youíre on a specially crafted vegan tour, then it absolutely will be, and it makes a perfect accompaniment to rum punch on your boat trips. Treat yourself Ė after all these adventures, youíre bound to have built up a healthy appetite.
Travel Team
If you'd like to chat about Vegan or need help finding a vacation to suit you we're very happy to help.
Emma Fry from our supplier Vegan Adventure Vacations on vegan travel in South and Central America:

Blazing a trail

ďTraveling as a vegan is definitely getting easier in some South and Central American countries such as Colombia and especially Mexico, but in others thereís still a long way to go. Thatís certainly the case in places such as Guatemala and Belize. These are amazing counties, but it will really help you if you travel with a specialist company. Iím kind of blazing a trail here. The big issue is of course the language barrier. People here tend to give you the response that they think you want if they donít fully understand what youíre looking for. But someone who knows the country well can overcome that, which is why you want an organised vegan tour if you want to be confident everything youíre eating is totally plant-based. Iíve been leading trips in this region for some 15 years now, and that experience is vital.Ē

Members Club

ďIím in the process of launching what I call my Members Club. The aim is to enthuse my own customers before they travel, but also to inspire other vegan travelers around the world, with a monthly series of video masterclasses covering a range of topics. These are aimed at promoting vegan, eco friendly travel and Iím teaming up with people such as vegan photographers and fitness experts to create useful content that people can access for inspiration. Iím also developing some self-guided itineraries for travelers that would love to do the kind of trips I offer but canít make the set dates .Ē
Written by Rob Perkins
Photo credits: [Page banner: Victoria Shes] [Coral: Yeti-legs] [Belize food: Charlie Marchant] [Coconut: Nico Carrera]