A beautiful and stunning Belizean Isle, Laughing Bird Caye is located 11 miles from Placencia Village in Southern Belize and is an ideal base for snorkeling and scuba diving. In fact, almost all travelers who vacation in Placencia visit this gorgeous piece of paradise for a full day of diving, snorkeling, sea kayaking and even picnicking.
Laughing Bird Caye got its name from the Laughing Gulls – the birds that once used to breed on the Caye, however due to a growing human presence, the colonies moved to a nearby undisturbed Caye for breeding. Presently, the Island is home to a number of exotic birds like the brown pelican, green heron, and melodious blackbird.
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The island stands on an elongated ridge of reef known as faro which is an angular atoll on a continental shelf, also known as shelf atoll, and is an important part of the Belize Barrier Reef System.
Last year in August, I stayed at Chabil Mar, a luxurious and elegant resort in Placencia and took a day trip with Splash Belize to explore Laughing Bird Caye.
I departed Placencia Village around 9am and arrived at this beautiful island an hour later to be astonished by the natural beauty of the atoll. I discovered a white sandy beach, scattered coconut trees and mangroves and a number of interesting plants like the spider lily, seaside purslane, morning glory and black mangrove in the 1.4 acre island.
“This reserve was declared a protected area on December 21, 1991 and is managed by the Placencia based community, Friends of Nature,” announced our guide when we were stepping out of the boat.
“It is a snorkeler’s heaven and the uniqueness of its structure contributes to both the abundance and variety of coral habitats and marine life”, he added.
We learned that the park is divided into three zones – the recreational zone, buffer zone and the preservation zone which is also known as the bird restoration zone. It was also interesting to hear that the laughing gulls have started to return to the island due to the conservation efforts that have been instituted by the park rangers that live onsite.
Our guide concluded his presentation of the national park and we then headed to snorkel around the shallow waters of the island.
Sea turtles, sting rays, barracudas, moray eels, black groupers, grunts, lobsters, crabs and snappers were just a few of the many fascinating marine creatures that we encountered.
We were also amazed at the profusion of color and life that exists in the underwater world of the Belize Barrier Reef.
Many of our wedding and honeymoon couples visit Laughing Bird Caye for a beautiful and romantic adventure. Chabil Mar offers concierge services to reserve the adventures of Belize on your behalf.