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THE CAYES

The Cayes
The Belizean Cayes are a series of tiny islands off the Belizean coast with porcelain-white beaches and turquoise waters.  With a concentration of over a hundred islands, two stunning atolls and miles of barrier reef, it is hard to find a better place! 
The crystal clear waters with there beautiful coral gardens and reef systems are home to an impressive range of marine life from; clownfish to the stunning whale shark. Activities include; diving, snorkelling, swimming, sailing, fishing or just relax on the beach.
 
Ambergris Caye, otherwise known as San Pedro and Caye Caulker next door are the main islands. San Pedro is slightly more developed though you can find seclusion towards the north of the island. Caye Caulker is more simple and tranquil with just a handful of sandy streets and no cars. Both can be reached by a 40 minute speedboat ride from the capital.

THINGS TO SEE AND DO

There are plenty of excursions in the area to choose from most within easy reach. Snorkelling, diving, fishing and sailing are all world class.
                    
Shark and sting ray alley. The Hol Chan Marine Reserve is set around a deep channel that cuts through the reef, acting as a funnel for marine life. Sea life is concentrated around this area and close encounters with schools of string rays and nurse sharks are guaranteed.
 
Goffs Caye. Take a speedboat ride across the waters to this picture-postcard, uninhabited island where you can snorkel, swim or read a book in total peace before having a delicious barbeque of freshly caught fish on the beach.
 
Manatee spotting. This elusive and endangered mammal is often referred to as the sea cow but is actually a distant relative of the elephant. Its massive body glides through the shallow waters, grazing on sea grass and occasionally surfacing to breathe.
Lighthouse reef - Blue Hole and Half Moon Caye. This is the outermost of the reef systems. The 400 ft deep, perfectly round sinkhole called The Blue Hole is one of Belize’s natural wonders and a remarkable site where you can see up to 5 species of shark - Jacques Cousteau rated this as one of the must dive sites of the world.

Turneffe Atoll. The beautiful scenery of the thick green mangroves and shallow lagoon gives shelter to a constant flow of marine life. Snorkelling and diving here you will see enormous schools of snappers, permits, eagle rays and groupers. Fishing is also superb here.
Recommended lodges in this area:

The Cayes
Situated on arguably one of the most sought after stretches of Ambergis coastline, is Mata Chica. Facing the translucent waters of the Caribbean, resting in your hammock outside your brightly painted cabana, you know that it’s going to be difficult to beat
The Cayes
Established in 2001 by a Belgian couple called Sandra and Yan, Portofino has forged an enviable reputation as a relaxed yet stylish destination with extremely friendly service. It is a small, intimate hotel, with just 17 rooms
The Cayes
This was one of the first hotels established on the island and the only 5 star hotel on Ambergis Caye.  Located approximately 20 minutes south of the town by foot, it is sufficiently far enough away from the town