The Maya People of Belize

Many people think that the culture which built all of the pyramids, palaces, and colossal stone cities in Belize and other areas of Central America are long gone. But there are more than six million Maya people living in Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, and Honduras, and they have preserved much of their heritage.

Today, the largest concentration of Maya people are in Mexico’s southern Yucatan Peninsula and southern Belize. Indeed, there are three different distinct groups of Maya in Belize known by their dialect, called the Yucatec, Kekchi, and Mopan. The Yucatec Maya emigrated from Mexico in the 19th century while the Mopan and Kekchi are the original inhabitants of Belize. And while most Maya in the region speak Spanish, most of the Maya in Belize are fluent in Spanish and English as well as their native tongue.

It’s often presumed that the collapse of the Maya civilization occurred as the result of the Spanish invading and conquering Central America. In reality, something occurred around the year 900 AD, long before the arrival of any Europeans in the area, and the Maya civilization self-destructed, the majority of cities becoming abandoned and left to the jungle. No one is quite sure why this occurred, but the latest research speculates that a combination of climate change and civil war was to blame.

The ancient Maya civilization was never ruled by one king or emperor. Instead, it was a loose confederation of independent kingdoms that were often at war with one another. The Maya civilization was, however, quite tight-knit, bound by a vast trade network, common language, and common religious beliefs. Many legends still abound about the Maya because their ancient hieroglyphic writing was undecipherable until recently. Today, archeologists are slowly piecing together a much more comprehensive history of the ancient Maya including titanic battles between legendary rulers in places like Xunantunich, Caracol, and Tikal (the latter is located just across the border in Guatemala).

And while the early Europeans did their best to “civilize” the Maya and eradicate their ancient culture, many Maya were living in remote, rural areas and thus escaped the wrath of the Spanish. As such, the Maya have preserved ancient dances like the Dance of the Deer, traditional foods like chocolate and corn, and textile skills.

If you’re interested in visiting ancient Maya sites or learning more about Maya culture, one of the best places to stay is Chabil Mar. Located in southern Belize, Chabil Mar is an award-winning luxury resort that offers cultural tours to learn more about the people, music, food, and cultures in Belize.

Belizean women lead the way in sustainable seaweed farming

belize seaweed
 
Belize has long been a magnet for ecotourism due to its incredible diversity of wildlife and the commitment of the Belize government to preserving delicate ecosystems. One of the loveliest areas in Belize is the Placencia Peninsula, which has some of the country’s most scenic beaches. Now, this slice of paradise is also the home of the Belize Women’s Seaweed Farmers’ Association or BWSFA. The members of this group are passionate about maintaining the country’s diverse natural beauty.
 
Over the last five years, The Nature Conservancy has partnered with both the government and local groups such as the BWSFA to develop a sustainable seaweed industry. The goal is to provide not just economic benefits for coastal communities but also ecological benefits for marine ecosystems. The coalition is therefore focused on innovative techniques that will satisfy both these requirements.
 
Seaweed farms function as natural carbon sinks that fight global warming and reduce the acidification of the ocean. They can create additional habitats and nurseries for marine creatures. Belize’s collaborative seaweed farming programs focus on practices that benefit species such as the spiny lobster, conch, and many types of fish including parrotfish and snapper. Training sessions help interested potential farmers learn how to develop a sustainable livelihood for their families.
 
Seaweed itself is a superfood. It can be eaten as a snack or used as a supplement that is added to shakes, soups, etc. It can also be used in natural beauty products. The BWSFA sells its naturally and sustainably harvested seaweed in dried, powdered, and gel forms. To learn more about the BWSFA and its products, you can check out their website.
 
Visitors who would like to learn more about the unique ecology of Belize and experience a truly special vacation can come to Chabil Mar Villas .
As the full-service resort nearest to Placencia Village, it is the ideal location from which to learn more about the BWSFA, which is based in Placencia. Chabil Mar is also the ideal location from which to appreciate the diversity of Belize’s marine life via snorkeling, sailing, and diving tours.
 
You can also arrange for a tour of the Belize jungle. A stroll along the beach will lead you to Placencia Village, the cultural hub of the area. Here you’ll find artisans and fishermen, as well as restaurants, bars, cafes, and live music. Or, if you prefer a more private vacation, the resort has its own secluded beach, as well as two infinity pools and a private pier.
 
Visit our website chabilmarvillas.com for more information on Placencia and 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 your Belize vacation.

Discover Belize’s Reef, Rainforest and Ruins

Reef, Rainforest and Ruins in Belize --- Belize vacations

Reefs and Rainforests and Ruins, Oh My! See them all on your Belize vacation

Many people believe that R&R stands for rest and relaxation and we won’t argue with them, but in Belize, we take our Rs one step further by boasting about the lushest, most impressive Reef, Rainforests and Ruins in the Caribbean–many of which are located along Belize’s 180 miles of coastline. If Belize presents you with too many delicious activity choices for your vacation, using the Three Rs to plan your time in Belize makes good sense. Make things even easier by staying at Chabil Mar Resort in Placencia, where staff is so helpful setting up guest itineraries, you won’t miss a thing.
 

southwest airlines to start flying to belize

Runways, first
To reach Belize, patronize any of the airlines servicing Belize, including Southwest, American, United, Delta, Westjet, and Air Canada. Flights originate in so many North American cities, it can take just hours to get you to Belize. If you’re coming from outside the U.S., book on Avianca or Copa Airlines.

 
Stunning-Remote-un-inhabited-Islands-belize
 

Belize Reef adventures
Are you eager to get some exercise while exploring areas around the Belize Barrier Reef? Rent a kayak on Laughing Bird Caye to explore everything from mangrove swamps to white beaches. If aquatics are more your style, snorkel the turquoise waters of the Caribbean to see an astonishing mix of marine life around the reef where you’ll as likely run into scientists studying indigenous marine life as sports enthusiasts.

 
Howler Monkeys in Belize
Belize Rainforests extraordinaire
If you only have time to visit one rainforest, make it to Monkey River where you will find howler monkeys and gain access to the many sites and wonders found in Belize that allows you to pair two Rs on one excursion. Not every rainforest in Belize has such a variety of things to see and do, which is why putting yourself into the hands of tour specialists at Chabil Mar resort is such a great idea. Ask about our signature excursion packages like an exciting jungle trek.
 
tikal mayan ruins from belize
Belize Mayan Ruins galore
If your Monkey River excursion whetted your appetite to explore ancient Maya ruins, then request information from Chabil Mar reservationists about Maya ceremonial centers, villages, temples and ball courts in Belize; our staff can even get you to nearby Guatemala to see Tikal, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Extend your adventure by visiting two destinations: Guatemala and Belize. This exciting seven night Belize & Guatemala vacation package is all inclusive, so all of the planning is done for you.
 
placencia belize

Need we mention Relaxation and Rest?
Your Chabil Mar hosts are experts at arranging all sorts of jungle, sea and combination excursions. Consider a customized pairing of scuba diving with fishing, a visit to Monkey River and Cockscomb Basin or mix and match land-based attractions with adventures at sea. Of course, you can do nothing at all if you wish!

For more information about visiting Belize or Placencia in 2019/2020 , 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.

September is a Celebration of Patriotism in Belize

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Belize celebrates two important events in September, St Georges Caye Day and Independence Day. St George’s Caye Day is celebrated on September 10 and commemorates the victory of the Baymen who won the battle that took place on September 10, 1798 between military forces from Mexico in an attempt to assert Spanish claims to present-day Belize.

On September 10th, the entire country dresses in patriotic colors of red, blue and white and in every corner of the country, you hear the lyrics of the patriotic song “The Tenth Day of September”.

st georges caye day photo by ambergris today

Photo by Ambergristoday.com

The song and lyrics are below:

The tenth day of September
words by B. F. Abeling

It was the 10th day of September In ninety-eight Anno Domini
when our fore-fathers won the
glorious fight at Old St. George’s Caye

Then hail them – cheer them.
Let our grateful loyal hearts not fail them,
as we march and sing and shout in merry glee
The Battle of St. George’s Caye.
Hip! Hip! Hurrah. Hip! Hip! Hurrah.

You can hear the song below courtesy of Lord Rhaburn Combo & Calypso Rose:

 

This year also marks the 222nd anniversary of the Battle of Saint George’s Caye Day.

The second most important event for the month of September in Belize is Independence Day. This year, Belize will celebrate its 39th anniversary of Independence from Great Britain and traditional events around the country include the Queen of the Bay Pageant, Carnival Parade, St. George’s Caye Day Citizens Parade, Expo, Official Independence Day Celebrations and live musical concerts.

The September Celebration theme is: Overcoming Adversity, Creating Opportunity, Belizeans: Unite for Prosperity!

Listen to some instrumental Belize National Songs here:

For more information about the traveling to Belize or Placencia for the month of September, 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.

Best Family Beach Resort in Placencia Belize

Best Family Beach Resort in Placencia Belize

If you think that the Covid-19 pandemic has been stressful, imagine how your restless kids feel after months of missing school and their classmates. Life as they knew it has been jarringly interrupted. Even teens admit to feeling stir crazy.

Your kids need a vacation. So do you. And there’s no safer place to take a family vacation than Belize beach resorts where properties are undertaking extraordinary hygiene and sanitizing precautions so guests return home healthier than they were when they arrived.

Nothing brings a family closer than a vacation, and Belize family vacations at Chabil Mar Resort are exceptional. All inclusive package designed for all ages give every member of your family something to remember. That’s why returning families agree that this is the best family beach resort in Placencia Belize.

Kids have no clue this fun vacation is educational

Make up for the time kids missed attending school in person by taking the kids on real-life social studies adventures to archaeological sites that include fascinating Maya ruins like Lubaantun or Lim Ni Punit.

Help them understand more about diversity while visiting the Village of Placencia Belize, a traditional Belizean fishing village. No biology classes can come close to watching the faces of your kids as they experience the Monkey River Howler Monkey Tour or roam the Cockscomb Jaguar Nature Preserve, the only jaguar reserve on Earth.

Teach your youngsters to snorkel, dive and appreciate marine wildlife at the tranquil inner reef waters where even kids afraid of the water find the area shallow enough to enjoy their experience. Families can also borrow Chabil Mar kayaks from the resort’s inventory or just enjoy the property’s 400 feet of private beach. Belize family vacations give everyone a chance to do something each one loves!

belize family vacations all inclusive

Elegance designed just for exhausted parents

It’s okay to let the kids think that this Chabil Mar vacation was planned just for them, but nothing could be further from the truth. Turn the kids loose to explore the resort while you two grab some private time within the walls of your luxurious villa and then meet the kids at one of the two resort swimming pools for a family dip.

Switch your dining locations for new perspectives on this gorgeous resort: enjoy Chef Daniel’s specialties served beach- or pool-side, on the pier or at the Kaleidoscope Bar and Lounge. 

Suites sized to accommodate your family give you all of the room you need to relax and enjoy your escape, knowing that Chabil Mar staff has been trained in all of the new hygiene techniques recommended by international health authorities during the worst of the pandemic. Best of all, everything about your all inclusive package is pre-paid, so you don’t have to take out your wallet unless you want to add tours to your itinerary.

Now is the time to book your reservation

Discovering all of this wonder as a family is guaranteed to become a milestone in your family’s history, but you can’t start collecting memories until you secure a reservation. The process is as easy as calling the resort’s toll free number: 1-866-417-2377 or visit the website to make sure the dates your family wants to travel are still available at Reservations@chabilmarvillas.com.

Prepare to come home with a new perspective that is likely to be doubly meaningful in light of the fact that you have all made it through this pandemic together. Make this the adventure trip you rediscover each other in ways you could only imagine at Chabil Mar, the best family beach resort in Placencia Belize.

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