8 Reasons Why Half Moon Caye is an Amazing Caye in Belize

Half Moon Caye Chabil Mar - Belize Resort

Photograph by by Marius Jovaiša, author of Heavenly Belize

Half Moon Caye is located at the southwest corner of Lighthouse Reef Atoll and just this week was selected as a top dive site by Jacksonville Business Journal, a popular business website in the United States.

Kristina Fazzalro, the writer who put together the article entitled “10 Best Dive Sites in North America” described the Caye as follows: Half Moon Caye in Belize offers divers the chance to go on a wall dive–a dive in which the vertical facades of the earth’s landmasses are explored. The depths at Half Moon Caye (and really at any wall dive) are tremendous, giving you the very correct feeling that you are staring into an abyss. The waters at Half Moon Caye are particularly clear, despite the depth, so you will be able to see all manner of wildlife, including loggerhead turtles, rays, barracuda, and eels.

See also: Atoll & Mainland Belize Vacations

Weather permitting, our dive package can include a trip to Lighthouse to dive the Blue Hole, Half Moon Wall and Long Caye

Of course we agree with Fazzalro’s description on Half Moon Caye and we also have 8 great reasons why we believe this beautiful gem is an amazing Caye in the country. Here are our 8 reasons:

REASON # 1 the fact that the water in Half Moon Caye is ridiculously crystal clear

REASON#2 the fact that the area is diversely populated with abundant marine life like groupers, snappers, hogfish, stingrays, and sand eels and all of these beautiful and colorful creatures are protected under Belize Law

REASON#3 the fact that the spectacular coral growth makes it the ultimate destination for snorkeling and diving in Belize

REASON#4 the fact that Half Moon Caye is a historical national park and protected area

REASON#5 the fact that the Caye supports the only viable breeding for the Red-footed Booby colony in the western Caribbean.

REASON#6 the fact that the Island Leaf-toed Gecko, also known as the Belize Atoll Gecko, is endemic to Belize, meaning it is found nowhere else in the world.

REASON#7 the fact that its beaches are clean and gorgeous

REASON#8 the fact that it is crescent- shaped and is divided into two ecosystems: on the western side it has dense vegetation with rich fertile soil and on the eastern section it sustains coconut palms and other vegetation.

For more information about Half Moon Caye or Belize, feel free to chat with our Concierge at: concierge@chabilmarvillas.com or contact our Reservations Manager at: reservations@chabilmarvillas.com. Or perhaps you would like to call toll free from the US or Canada: 1-866-417-2377.

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Giant Iguana–on a Mission to Find a Mate–Found in Belize!

belize travel news

Before news of the dramatic find unearthed by a tourist staying at Chabil Mar leaks out, it is incumbent upon us to deliver a warning to anyone intending to investigate this story on their own. Don’t approach Chabil Mar on April 1st—even if someone dares you to do so—because you could put yourself into a serious and dangerous situation, especially if you’re female. 

It’s hard to miss this rather ugly, scaly creature since he’s about the same size as a contemporary crocodile and while he doesn’t speak English, he has made it clear that he is on a mission to bring his species back from extinction. In order to figure out exactly why he crawled up on the Chabil Mar beach, we hired a linguist specializing in Iquanise to find out how he intends to do that. 

The answer was unsettling: He has returned with reproduction on his mind and wants to show the scientific world that it’s possible to bring a species back that has disappeared off the face of the earth. This accomplishment would, if possible, make Belize the world’s capitol of species regeneration! 

The translator was astonished to discover that this giant reptile’s only goal is to find a mate quickly. Because this iguana’s mission is so specific, we’re asking all Chabil Mar guests to remain indoors on what he has declared to be his specific day to mate: April 1st. Once midnight passes, it will be safe to go out and all women are invited to come to the beach bar for free champagne and hors d’oeuvres. 

“We’re doing this for the safety of our guests,” said Marketing Manager Larry France. He plans to be on hand at midnight to pass platters of snacks and pour champagne. “We intend to celebrate having come through this nightmare and we will toast the fact that there will be no iguana babies come New Year’s Day when they would ordinarily be expected to hatch out.” 

“We’re also doing this as a prank!” adds France, who takes all of the credit for coming up with this far-out April Fool’s Day joke, so feel free to roam wherever you like at Chabil Mar on April 1st. Unless, of course, you run into an oversized iguana, at which point, Larry wants to hear from you!

Discover Maya King Waterfalls in Southern Belize

Maya King Waterfall in Southern Belize

Swimming in a waterfall is the ultimate jungle adventure. In Belize, you can enjoy this experience at the Maya King waterfalls. These waterfalls are located in a privately-owned park and are about a 45-minute drive from Chabil Mar.

Belize has the tallest waterfalls in Central America and the Maya King Waterfalls are just one example of these magnificent cascades of pure, untouched water. 

The Maya King waterfalls are a hidden gem that will take your breath away with its spectacular surroundings. The waterfalls end in a large, natural pool filled with cold mountain water. You can swim, stand under the rushing waters or simply sit on the natural rock sides and enjoy the scenery. 

This is an easy, relaxing tour that’s fun for both locals and travelers alike. There is no hiking or climbing involved. You simply take transportation directly to the waterfall. Then you just climb out of the vehicle and step into the clear, cool waters of the natural pool. You will spend two hours at the waterfalls and then head back to Placencia. It’s a great excursion if you want just a touch of jungle adventure. 

If you do want to add some adventure to your tour, add zip-lining to your visit. Spend the morning flying through the jungle treetops, then cool off and relax at the waterfalls. As you traverse the jungle, you’ll be joined by tropical birds flying through the trees beside you. 

You can also add river tubing to this excursion. Get ready to ride a river that’s shaded on both sides by leafy jungle trees filled with colorful flora and fauna. You’ll be guided by an expert guide who can point out the key sights and sounds along the way. Finish your river adventure with a refreshing dip in the Maya King Waterfalls.

The Chabil Mar Difference 

Your Belize vacation starts at Chabil Mar Villas. Our award-winning luxury resort is the perfect haven to return after a day of adventures. 

The resort staff will arrange all your tours, excursions and transportation. All you have to do is relax and enjoy every minute of your perfect Belize holiday.

Belize is a Fantastic New Year’s Destination

An excellent way to escape the winter blues, Belize enjoys fantastic weather and lots of sunshine in December and throughout the New Year’s festivities.

Beyond the usual celebrations of music, dancing, and beverages, Belize has a number of unique New Year’s traditions. For locals, the last day of the year is a time to lay out a delicious feast of rice and beans, relleno, and turkey while counting down the final hours of December together with friends, family, and loved ones.

Children and adults alike love to celebrate the arrival of the New Year with plenty of fireworks, sparklers, and other pyrotechnics. Whether you’re in a small village or a large town, there are plenty of firework demonstrations throughout the country.

January 1, New Year’s Day, is a time for everyone, local and visitor alike, to spend the day enjoying exciting activities and traveling around the country. One of the most popular activities is the horse race in the village of Burrell Boom in the north. Another New Year’s Day favorite is the bicycle race that begins in Corozal District and ends in Belize City.

One of the best places to enjoy a wonderful New Year’s celebration is on the Placencia Peninsula. Featuring 16 miles of white sandy beaches on Belize’s southeastern Caribbean coast, Placencia is ideally situated just a short distance from world-class snorkeling, scuba diving, sailing, and fishing on the Belize Barrier Reef. Placencia is also conveniently located close to popular mainland activities like hiking in the Cockscomb Basin Nature Reserve, exploring ancient Maya ruins, and marveling at natural wonders like waterfalls, rainforests, jungles, and exotic tropical birds and wildlife that call Belize home.

The award-winning resort of Chabil Mar on the Placencia Peninsula offers comprehensive “reef and rainforest” packages that combine the best activities on the reef with tours of the rainforest. Chabil Mar also organizes trips to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Tikal just over the border in neighboring Guatemala.

Chabil Mar offers guests the opportunity to enjoy true luxury in a beachfront setting just a few minutes’ walk from Placencia Village. The resort features elegantly appointed villas, a lush tropical garden, and one of the top restaurants in the country.

Why not start 2020 off right with an exciting adventure in Belize? Staying at the Chabil Mar resort and participating in exciting tours of the top attractions in Belize is a great way to renew, refresh, and revitalize your spirit.

Visit our website chabilmarvillas.com for more information on  Belize, and don’t hesitate to send us an email, or call US/CAN Toll Free: 1-866-417-2377, Local: (011-501) 523-3606, if you have questions or need help in planning a Belize vacation  for New Year’s.


The Best Birding in Southern Belize

bird watching vacations belize

Belize has long been a birder’s best-kept secret. In fact, some people say that if you’re not a birder when you arrive in Belize, you’ll be one by the time you leave. 

Almost half of the land in Belize is managed as reserves, wildlife sanctuaries, national parks, and protected habitats. Many are managed by the Belize Audubon Society and these protected areas provide a rich diversity of natural ecosystems where birds thrive. 

Southern Belize is the primary location for bird lovers looking for keel-billed toucans, ringed and pygmy kingfishers, pale-billed woodpeckers, squirrel cuckoos, pygmy owls, hummingbirds, keel-billed motmots, scarlet macaws and every species of parrot and parakeet imaginable. And don’t forget our local chachalaca birds, purple gallinules, spotted sandpipers, black catbirds and the list goes on and on. 

What’s more, you’ll see all of these marvelous birds in settings that are breathtakingly beautiful. The following are some prime birding spots in southern Belize. 

birding in southern belize

Red Bank Village

Red Bank is a Maya village located near Placencia. The community is a favorite hangout of vivid, fast-flying scarlet macaws that flock here to find food. For the past 10 years, the village has cooperated with conservation groups to monitor and protect the macaws. Sadly, scarlet macaws are endangered, so this is a rare opportunity to spot these beautiful birds in their natural habitat. 


Aguacaliente Wildlife Sanctuary protects more than 6000 acres of wetlands ecosystems. Getting there requires a two-hour hike from the village of Laguna in Toledo District. In the lagoons, you’ll see egrets, herons, wood storks, flycatchers, ibis and kingfishers. You might see jabiru storks, another rare and endangered species. It’s a good idea to visit Aguacaliente with a guide. 

belize birds

Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary

Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary is the world’s first jaguar preserve and an important watershed conservation area. You’ll see a huge variety of animals, plants, and birds here, including white-collared manikins, crimson-collared and masked tanagers, bat falcons and more. 

Sir Thomas at Toucan Sittee

Sir Thomas at Toucan Sittee is located in southern Belize. It is s privately-owned bird sanctuary where one birder reported seeing 100 different species in an hour. The top birds you will encounter at this location include kingfishers, hummingbirds, toucans, and parakeets. 

If you’re already packing your bags and binoculars, make sure you book your stay at Chabil Mar. Our resort offers luxury accommodations in Placencia Village and our “Treasures of the Sky” Belize birding package provides guided tours led by local experts to top birding spots in the country.

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