Day 26, 27, 28, 28, 30, 31
The bus from Cancun to Belize City was freezing, long and did I mention cold? I put my hood up and held on to Declan so tight for warmth I might have tried to climb into his body. Didn’t get that much sleep on this bus – again just broken amounts here and there. We were woken up around 3-4am to go through Mexican immigration. Having done my research I knew that they would ask us to pay the Tourist Tax of $30 USD – we however already paid this tax at the airport at Tijuana. Regardless the immigration official told us that we had to pay again, which I already knew was a scam – the immigration officials are very corrupt. We insisted that we had already paid the FVM and had the card to prove it. He then continued to read through all of Declan’s travel documents, including flights totally irrelevant to Mexico as well as his travel insurance. The immigration official was probably just trying to look smart or seem like he had authority – there was no way that I was going to get scammed though! Got through the Mexican broder without having to pay the tax again and was then carted off to the Belize immigration office where we got our passports stamped and bags checked to get back onto the bus to drive down Belize’s dirt roads down to Belize City.
Eventually got to Belize City, hauled the bags off at Novelo bus terminal, a 100% sketchy area. Belize City is not a place you would want to find yourself in after dark. We grabbed a cab to the dock to catch the first ferry out to Caye Caulker – our tiny Caribbean island which would be our home and relaxation point for the next 5 days! The ferry was not the greatest experience! It was jam packed with as many people the company could fit! We were also part of the last group of people to board our tiny boat and had to sit in the middle. Every so often the boat would hop into the air and rather painfully slam back down into the ocean – I was a bit nervous that the boat would tip! Luckily we got to Caye Caulker in one piece! The island has no roads as Western people know it. It is so small that if you look to the left you will see the ocean and if you look to the right you will again, see the ocean! There are 3 main roads spanning the width of the island and all dirt roads and tiny Caribbean-esque cabanas raised up in the air since the island gets hit with hurricanes during hurricane season. There are no cars on Caye Caulker, rather our taxi was a golf cart which we took to our accommodation for the week.
Having done some sweet as research, I had found a place called Sandy Lane, which was close to the Split (the main swimming area on Caye Caulker which is absolutely beautiful) and also the cheapest private room on the whole island! Guess how much I paid each night! I’ll tell you at the end of this blog post! The room had a double bed and a single, no A/C though so it was rather hot but Caye Caulker cools down during the night.
Caye Caulker was the Caribbean mecca that we needed - hot sun, cheap food and drinks, wonderful people, turquoise crystal clear water and a relaxed environment. We did a lot of relaxing on this island. Chilled in the beautiful water at the Split a few times, sunbaked, sat on swings overlooking the Caribbean drinking rum punch, walked around the island exploring every nook and cranny and walking alongside the waterfront all the way down to the tiny airport which is pretty much a dirt strip of land that runs for a couple of meters!
There was a lot of wonderful cheap and fresh food on the island. Declan tried a lot of local Belikin beer. Both of us had lobster almost every night which cost us $10 US for a large lobster each! Back home you would pay more than $50 for the same lobster! We also enjoyed a lot of rum punch which is a story I will save for Declan’s 21st!
Having so much chill time, Declan and I battled each other in a few games of chess with our new Mayan style onyx chess sets we picked up in Mexico City. Declan of course beat me most of the time, however I did win once because he wasn’t paying attention. A win is a win!
On our first day we met a Belize man who had moved to Sweden but was back for a visit. He told us all these scientific theories about how NaCl (salt) is the wonder cure of the century and how the government has a conspiracy where it sprays mist in the sky to stop the sunlight from hitting the earth and a lot of other hocus pocus he mentioned.
The people on Caye Caulker were very friendly and lovely to interact with. They speak like Jamaican people and the island motto is ‘slow down!’ – which we heard a number of times passing by shop owners on the side of the road.
Our room at Sandy Lane cost me $5 US a night! Great value for money and cheapest accommodation I’ve stayed in so far!