The towering ruins of Xunantunich, the ceremonial capital of the ancient Peten Maya, are nestled within the picturesque hillsides of the Cayo District situated just minutes from the Belize Guatemala border. The typical day excursion to this majestic site embarks with a comfortable two hour drive through the rolling hills and charming pastoral backdrop of western Belize to the sleepy hillside village of San Jose Succotz, home to one of the country’s last remaining hand drawn river ferries. It is here that the adventure truly begins after the lumbering barge like contraption casually glides over the azure waters of the Macal River to a neatly paved road on the eastern bank which gradually ascends on a winding curve surrounded by a cornucopia of lush vegetation providing a panoramic view of the river setting in the background.
After about a mile, the road opens on to a newly renovated parking compound in which a ticket booth as well as a fully stocked souvenier shop, refreshment stand, and sanitary bathroom facilities are located. Following a short hike up a paved incline, visitors enter the spectacular central plaza encircled by four major pyramids including the astounding main palace which literally overwhelms the surrounding structures. No visit is complete without a vigorous climb to the summit of this towering masterpiece through a series of carefully renovated passageways and stairwells. With every step, the view of the surrounding area becomes more and more awe-inspiring; stepping out on to the chief patio, an area once reserved for high priests and royalty, is paramount to looking out the window of a plane with breathtaking scenery in all directions spanning well beyond the Guatemalan Border and including an unparalleled view of the surrounding towns as well as the flamboyant flora and fauna that embrace the surrounding area. Photo opportunities are in abundance capturing remarkable images and creating memories that will never fade. Truly an unforgettable experience, the Xunantunich tour is highly recommended to both history and nature enthusiasts alike. After your tour of Xunantunich travel to the Belize Zoo, the only zoo of its kind in Central America and the Caribbean.
As the only facility of its kind within the Latin American and Caribbean region, The Belize Zoo delicately combines all the fascination and appeal of a stereotypical zoo with a well monitored conservation effort which allows native wildlife to flourish within its unique natural habitat. The zoo is located 29 west of Belize City, a convenient 45 minute bus ride from the Belize Tourist Village cruise port, rendering it accessible to stop-over visitors who wish to sample the splendor of the pristine Belizean wilderness without venturing too far from Belize City.
Certainly, the zoo’s most attractive feature is its user friendly layout consisting of a variety of well constructed walkways, spacious viewing platforms, and interactive exhibits which allow visitors to get up close and personal with the animals behind the safety barriers of carefully re-created habitats. Each exhibit is intricately tailored to the specific species which it showcases by the use of all indigenous shrubs and trees as well as the inclusion of well landscaped ponds and wetlands.
The over 175 animals representing 45 species of mammals, birds, and reptiles include the country’s most revered national symbols particularly the colorful keel-billed toucan, the majestic tapir or “mountain cow”, and rare black orchid in addition to the towering jabiru stork, elusive black jaguar, and playful howler monkeys.
After a leisurely stroll around the winding walkways of the 28 acres compound visitors may purchase a souvenir at the fully stocked gift shop, enjoy a picnic lunch in the spacious playground area adjacent to the parking lot or opt to enjoy a hearty Belizean meal in the café adjacent to the gift shop.
Price: US165 per adult, US115per child under 9 years.
|DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION||Belize City, Hotel, Accommodations, Airstrip, Water Taxi|
|DEPARTURE TIME||Please be ready at least 15 minutes before departure|
Please bring along sunblock, cap, bug repellent. Please note that there is a minimum of two persons for this excursion. Please note that after your booking we will be in touch to get all the details, hotel accommodation etc.