Learn about the making of chocolate from its source- the cacao bean farmer. Here, at the Chocolate Farm, in a Maya Village, our guides will tell you about the sustainable farming practices and the cacao farm industry. This tour is a joy for all your senses! You will touch, smell, and, yes- TASTE- the entire chocolate experience- just as the Mayas did.
WHAT TO BRING: Backpack,bug spray, towel, water and snack, sunscreen, sunglasses, hat, good walking shoes.
Price: $70 USD per person. Includes all tours, entrance fees, transportation, and chocolate.
Explore the living and the ancient Maya cultures in one amazing adventure to the southernmost district in Belize, the home of the Maya spirits of the past and the vibrant culture of the Maya people of the present. Travel south to the Toledo District and experience everything, as the ancient Maya people would have. Walk in the footsteps of the ancient Mayas and visit the ruins of Nim Li Punit.
In the afternoon, learn about the making of chocolate from its source- the cacao bean farmer. Here, at Eladio’s Chocolate Farm, in the Maya Village of San Pedro Columbia, Eladio will tell you about the sustainable farming practices and the cacao farm industry. This tour is a joy for all your senses! You will touch, smell, and, yes- TASTE- the entire chocolate experience- just as the Mayas did.
WHAT TO BRING: Backpack, bug spray, towel, water and snack, sunscreen, sunglasses, hat, good walking shoes
DEPARTURE from HOPKINS: 8 am
RETURN to HOPKINS: 5 pm
PRICE WITH GROUND TRANSFER (ROUNTRIP) from HOPKINS:
US$150.00 per person includes all tours, national park entrance fees for ruins, transportation, and a packed lunch.
Cross the Mopan River on a hand cranked ferry and take a short drive to Xunantunich. You will have the opportunity to climb to the top of ‘El Castillo’. At 130 feet, it is still one of the tallest manmade structures in Belize with panoramic views of Belize and Guatemala. It served as a civic ceremonial centre in the Late and Terminal Classic periods to the Belize Valley region. The core of the city occupies about one square mile, consisting of a series of six plazas surrounded by more than 26 temples and palaces, but recent studies indicate that the site may be even more extensive than previously thought.
After enjoying a traditional lunch in a restaurant of the area we head on to Cahal Pech. The site was a palatial, hilltop home for a ruling elite Maya family, who lived here during the Classic period. The site consists of seven plazas and over 30 structures including temples, residential buildings, ball courts, an altar and a sweat-house, all situated on just 2 acres. Cahal Pech is well noted for is unique, distinctive architecture and engineering. Significant finds include a royal burial chamber in one of the structures with an abundance of accoutrements. Shell and bone ornaments, pottery vessels, obsidian blades and the most impressive being a jade and shell mosaic mask.
Price: $150 US per person.
Explore Nimli Punit, located in southern Belize just off the Southern Highway, this small Mayan site dates back to the late classic period (250 – 900 AD) and is regarded as a ceremonial center. Its name is derived from a carving on one of the site’s 26 stelae, the highest concentration found in Belize, which depicts a figure wearing a large headdress.
In the Kekchi Maya language, Nim li Punit means “the big hat.” The monument on which this carving appears is the longest stela in Belize and second in the Mayan World, measuring 17 meters and weighing 250 tons. Situated atop the foothills of the southern Maya Mountains, it spreads across 121.32 acres. Consisting of two main plazas, one higher than the other, the largest structure is 33-40 feet above plaza level and is constructed of dry, sandstone typical of sites in southern Belize. Step back in time as you walk through the ruins and learn of the customs and traditions of this ancient civilization.
After exploring the ancient Mayan temples, visit with us the direct descendants of the Master builders of such master pieces in a ‘modern’ Maya village. Welcomed by the villagers who are keen to show you how their traditional lifestyle continues today with little influence from the modern world. You will be invited into an individual’s home where they will show you how to make corn tortillas (Mayan style).
Price: USD $140 per person.
Trek the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary in Southern Belize. The world’s first and only reserve of its kind, covering an area of 120,000 Acres. Through Dr. Alan Rabinowitz’s ecological studies conducted between 1982 and 1984, it was observed that the Cockscomb Basin contained the highest density of Jaguars ever recorded in the region.
Therefore in 1984, the area was initially declared a forest reserve with a “No Hunting” ordinance to protect the large Jaguar population and other wildlife that make it their home. It was later declared a wildlife sanctuary on February 26, 1986. Hike well established and maintained trails through the rainforest. Along the way, you may see evidence of Jaguars and other mammals such as Tapir or Peccaries (Wild pigs) and even hear the loud call of the Howler Monkeys. The preserve is also haven for over 350 bird species and you may have opportunity to see them in their natural habitat.
After a picnic style lunch, tube the gentle South Stann Creek River and take in the picturesque scenery as you refresh in the cool water. Hike a few more minutes for a swim at a waterfalls’ pool.
Price: USD $110 per person.
This Caving Expedition is one of the greatest experiences in Belize! Part of the largest Cave System in Belize with a huge portion still unexplored, the cave has been partially surveyed. St. Herman’s Cave features areas with deep water, narrow passages, mud slopes and some areas where the ceiling is so low that one must crawl through. Thousands year old artifacts, remains of ancient Maya Ceremonial activity, spear points and Obsidian blades can be seen. Trek through the Jungle to the entrance of the cave, trace back the steps of Shamans as you explore the multileveled chambers adorned with glittering formations.
Enjoy a picnic style lunch on the floor of the cave to the light of your headlamp before making your way back to the starting point of the tubing. ’Tube’ into the underworld as you float on inner tubes with only your headlamp to light your way. Enjoy floating past side windows that filter the jungle light through the mist as you swirl around stalagmites jutting from the river and stalactites looming from above.
Price: USD $165 per person.
Xunantunich is an ancient Maya city which rivaled neighboring Tikal in strength and size. It is located in the village of San Jose Succotz near Belize’s western border with Guatemala and the bustling market town of San Ignacio. In order to reach this impressive archaeological site, we will drive about three hours through the lush Hummingbird Highway dotted with small villages, orange orchards, and vast tracts of jungle. Then we head into the fertile farmland of the Cayo District and back into the hills where we cross the Mopan River on a hand cranked ferry and explore the ancient ruins on foot. Climb to the top of the the main temple and take in the stunning panoramic views. From the highest temples, we then head east to explore the Caves Branch system, a complex system of caves and rivers which blend into a mysterious hidden world. this world was worshiped by the Maya of the past as a sacred place, the Underworld, home to spirits and gods. Evidence of ancient ceremonies is found in the artifacts that to this day are present in the cave system. Equipped with tubes and headlamps we float in and out of a series of caves carved into the ancient mountains by underground rivers. This is an adventure not to be missed!
WHAT TO BRING: Backpack, bug spray, towel, bathing suit, change of clothes, tennis shoes or hiking boots, river shoes, snack and water, sunscreen, sunglasses, dry bag.
DEPARTURE from HOPKINS: 7 am
RETURN to HOPKINS: 5 pm (includes lunch and all park entrance fees, transportation and guide)
PRICE WITH GROUND TRANSFER (ROUNTRIP) from HOPKINS: US$145.00 per person.