A travel update from Chabil Mar

 

Dear Traveler,

In this very difficult time for everyone around the world, our hearts and minds go out to all those most affected by COVID-19. We are so thankful for all of our world tourism partners and guests to Belize, Placencia, and Chabil Mar. As you consider your current or future travel plans, we kindly request that you also consider a re-booking option rather than a cancellation. As things become clearer, you can look towards the new dates for your Belize vacation to relax, refresh and bask in all of the adventures and hospitality of your Belize vacation. We’ll be waiting for you with open arms.

With Best Belizean Regards,

The Chabil Mar Team

Do Not Miss The Cross Country Cycling Classic This Year

holysaturdaycrosscountrybicycleraceinbelize-768x432

On Holy Saturday, Belize will see one of the most exciting and much-anticipating sporting events in the country. Known as the Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic, this challenging 140-mile roundtrip bike race from Belize City to San Ignacio Town will feature more than 100 competitors from around the country and the world.

Saturday, April 11, 2020 will mark the 92nd anniversary of the race which first began as a way to encourage Belizeans to attend more cricket matches. Due to uneven road conditions, the first roundtrip race between Belize City and San Ignacio Town was a punishing affair lasting more than 13 hours. In recent years the winners usually cross the finish line in less than six hours.

All cyclists will take off with the firing of the starting gun at 6:00 am on mile marker 1.5 on the George Price Highway but awards are given for four different categories of competitors: Masters (professional racers), women, men under 18, and men under age 23. Most competitors race individually but a separate category of award (called “Elite”) is given to the team that crosses the finish line with the best collective time.

Thousands of people will see the racers off at 6:00 am across from Leslie’s Imports in Belize City as well as cheer on the first finishers to arrive back in town at Memorial Park just before noon. The mid-point of the race is Queen Elizabeth Park in downtown San Ignacio, another popular location to witness all the action.

At the end of the race, there is an exciting awards ceremony followed by boisterous banquets and celebrations throughout the day for all of the competitors and their supporters. Falling halfway through the country’s four-day Easter celebration, the Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic is one of the most anticipated and popular sporting events of the year in Belize.

Visitors and locals alike line the streets to cheer on and celebrate the thrilling excitement of watching top athletes to compete in this grueling 140-mile roundtrip race from Belize City in the east to San Ignacio Town in the western part of the country.

On behalf of Chabil Mar and its Staff, we wish the best of luck to all the 2020 participating teams.

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Five Hottest Best Things to Do in Belize for Easter

Easter Break is one of the most widely celebrated holidays in Belize due to the fact that more than 80% of Belizeans are Christians. It is a time when a lot of Belizeans are off from work and school and travel around the countryside to enjoy Belize’s beauty.

Not only is the weather perfect on Easter, but it is also a good time to go diving with whale sharks, snorkeling in the turquoise waters of the Barrier Reef, as well as exploring the famous Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave or even climbing Xunantunich Maya Temples.

Many travelers also head to the exotic and stunning Peninsula of Placencia in Southern Belize to relax on the white sandy beaches or visit Cayo to watch the Cross Country Cycling Race – the biggest sporting event on Holy Saturday.

 
If you are looking for the hottest best things to do in Belize this Easter, here are 5 things to consider:

 

Watch the Cross-Country Cycling Race

 
 
The Cross Country Cycling Race is a one day cycling race that is held every Easter on Holy Saturday in Belize. It is the biggest cycling event in the country with an estimated distance of some 140 miles. The race has been going since 1928 and its origin has roots in the colonial era when Belizeans had to cycle from village to village to watch sporting events like cricket and football matches.
 

Visit Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave

 
 
The ATM Cave is one of the most popular tours in Belize and visitors to this cave attest that the experience is not only breathtaking but also one of a kind. The cave is located in the karstic limestone terrain of Roaring Creek Valley in Cayo and is approximately 5 km long and contains a perennial stream that runs through it including a ledge with twostelae and a large chamber full of intact human remains and Maya pots.
 
According to Jaime Awe, Director of Archaeology , the ATM Cave was a sacred place to the Maya who utilized the cave during the classic period AD 250-909.
 
This Easter Break is a good chance to explore and learn more about the remarkable history of this cave.
 
 
Dive or Snorkel with Whale Sharks
 
 
Easter Break is an excellent time to snorkel or dive with the magnificent whale sharks at the Gladden Spit Marine Reserve near Placencia Belize. The giant whale sharks are attracted to this reserve by the spawn of the mutton and cuberra snapper which they enjoy eating.
 
For those who do not know, the whale sharks are the largest fish in the world and one of the largest creatures of any kind alive today. Despite their size, whale sharks are remarkably gentle and curious and thus swimming with them is a special treat for divers and snorkelers.
 

Spend a weekend in Placencia

 
 
Placencia was recently nominated as one of the best beach destinations in the Caribbean by Turopia, a popular travel blog in the world and is an ideal eco-destination to enjoy outdoor adventures like hiking, snorkeling, kayaking, deep sea fishing, diving and even exploring Maya ruins.
 
ChabilMar, a guest exclusive resort is located right on the beach and can serve as a base to explore the natural attractions in Placencia and surrounding areas.
 

Visit Xunantunich and Cahal Pech Maya Ruins in Cayo District

 
 
Xunantunich and Cahal Pech Maya Ruins are the most visited Maya sites in the Cayo District.
 
Xunantunich is located atop a ridge above theMopan River and served as a Maya civic ceremonial center in the late terminal Classic periods to the Belize Valley region. Xunantunich’s name means “stone woman” in the Maya language and “El Castillo”, the largest pyramid offers an impressive and panoramic view of the area.
 
Cahal Pech is one of the oldest recognizably Maya sites in Belize that dates back as 1200BCE and was home to an elite Maya family. The site consists of 34 structures with the tallest temple being about 25 meters in height which is situated around a central acropolis.
 
According to archaeologists, the site was abandoned in the 9th center CE for unknown reasons.
 
For more information about the adventures, tours and excursions available to our guests from Placencia and Chabil Mar, chat with our Concierge at: concierge@chabilmarvillas.com or contact our Reservations Manager at: reservations@chabilmarvillas.com. Perhaps you would like to call toll free from the US or Canada: 1-866-417-2377.

March Is the Perfect Month to Visit Belize

belize in march

Did you miss your winter vacation this year? You can more than make up for it by booking a trip to warm, friendly Belize in March.

Enjoy White Sandy Beaches and Lush Jungles in March

March is a great time to explore Belize’s beaches and lush jungles and the Placencia Peninsula in southern Belize is the perfect base to enjoy both. Opt for a jungle and beach vacation package and you are guaranteed to have the time of your life in Belize.

Adventures You Can Only Have in Belize

The Belize Barrier Reef is the second-largest barrier reef in the world, and it offers world-class snorkeling and scuba diving.

Try a cave tubing adventure, where you ride a rubber tube down a scenic river and through a network of mysterious sacred caves used by the thousands of years ago.

Belize has many nature preserves, wildlife sanctuaries, and marine reserves. Each is a fantastic destination for birders and anyone who wants to see rare, tropical wildlife.

La Ruta Maya-Belize River Challenge

Major March Events

The biggest sporting event in Belize, the La Ruta Maya Belize River Challenge, takes place in March. This grueling, 180-mile canoe race brings thousands of spectators and participants to San Ignacio Town, where the race begins. Before the race starts, San Ignacio holds a festival of music, food, and dance.

The race is a major event that draws competitors from countries all over the region.

Baron Bliss Day (March 9th) honors one of Belize’s greatest benefactors. Baron Bliss was an English aristocrat whose yacht spent two days in the harbor at Belize. Bliss never left his boat, but local Belizeans visited him while he was in the harbor.

Bliss was completely charmed by Belize. When he died in 1926, he left a generous trust fund to set up schools, roads, parks, and public services in Belize. He also asked to be buried here. Every year, Belizeans honor his memory with a parade and a boat race.

Maya Day honors the proud heritage of one of Belize’s largest ethnic groups. The Maya of Belize have built a thriving culture that preserves their traditions. You can learn about their culture and history during Maya Day at the Tumul K’in Center of Learning in the Toledo District, Southern Belize.

Enjoy traditional dances, music, games, and activities for children. Sample delicious, homemade Maya food and world-famous Maya chocolate.

What’s the Weather Like in March?

Unlike northern countries that are still shivering under gray skies and chilly winds, Belize is warm and sunny in March.

Daytime temperatures are in the 80s with low humidity and almost no rainy days. At night, the temperatures drop to the 70s. Sea breezes keep everything cool and fresh. The Caribbean Sea is warm enough to swim in all year round.

In short, it’s just about perfect.

Chabil Mar Belize Resort

Enjoy Belize at Chabil Mar in March

When you book your trip to Belize, make the most of your vacation by staying at Chabil Mar. Our award-winning Belize resort is located on the stunning Placencia Peninsula and offers luxurious accommodations and amenities to discerning travelers.

Contact us today to create a perfect March getaway.

5 Belizean Festivals You Simply Cannot Miss This Year

One of the great things about visiting Belize is that there’s always something going on. No matter what time of year you come to Belize, you can join in on the fun with one of the country’s many exciting festivals, holidays, and events.

Here are 5 festivals in Belize that you shouldn’t miss this year:

Placencia Lobsterfest

 

Summer kicks off with style every June on the Placencia Peninsula with a festive three-day party that celebrates the mighty lobster. Local chefs compete to create the most savory dish from the world’s favorite crustacean while diners work to burn off all those extra calories with fun games, live music, and a beach party that lasts until dawn. There’s plenty for the whole family to enjoy, including other seafood treats, face painting, and homemade handicrafts and artwork for sale.

This year’s Lobsterfest in Placencia runs from June 26-28, 2020.

September Celebrations

Belize Flag

 

Sometimes it seems as though the entire month of September is one big holiday. Beginning on September 10, the national holiday of St. George’s Caye Day celebrates the historic 1798 triumph of British settlers over a Spanish armada which led to Belize becoming the only English-speaking country in the region. Patriotic celebrations, parades, and red, white, and blue (the national colors of Belize) festooned everywhere culminate with big bang on September 21, Independence Day, celebrating the moment in 1981 when Belize became a free and independent nation.

Garifuna Settlement Day

 

More than 200 years ago, the Garifuna people were exiled from their Caribbean home after an uprising against the British. Seeking sanctuary, the Garifuna arrived in Belize on a fleet of dugout canoes, an event which is re-enacted on the morning of November 19 every year for the national holiday of Garifuna Settlement Day. Although the Garifuna compromise only 4% of Belize’s population, their contribution to music, dance, and food has the whole country celebrating on November 19.

Mango Festival in Hopkins

 

Many consider the mango to be the tastiest tropical fruit grown in Belize, and the idyllic coastal village of Hopkins grows no fewer than 20 different varieties. Besides all the tasty fruit and mango-themed dishes, there’s live music, games, contests, and dancing in the street to herald the arrival of the mango crop.

In 2020, the Hopkins Mangofest is scheduled for the first week in June.

International Costa Maya Festival

 

Originally a celebration of Maya heritage from around the region, the International Costa Maya Festival is now one of the biggest festivals of the year. Held in San Pedro on the island of Ambergris Caye, the International Costa Maya Festival has top musical acts, plenty of delicious food and drinks, and a beauty pageant.

In 2020, the festival will be held from July 31st to August 2nd.

For more information about 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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