As the calendars roll over, it releases a travel lust - a desire to start the New Year with something fresh and different. If its warm, tropical and truly out of the ordinary, so much the better!
How about a jungle adventure, visiting the 100,000 acres of untouched rain forest offered within the Cockscomb Sanctuary and Wildlife Preserve? That is just one of your many options when staying in the lagoon city of Placenda overlooking the Bay of Honduras in Central America's Belize.
The Cockscomb Sanctuary was set aside as the largest protected Jaguar preserve in world. Besides being home to the 300 lb. Spotted cats, you might get a glimpse of tapirs, anteaters, coatis, armadillos or any of the other 55 tropical mammals known to dwell there. There are over 300 bird species, many rare and all of them exotic, with thousands of butterflies, orchards and tropical flowers. With bio-diversity running from the lowlands to the 3675 foot peak of Mount Victoria, its a wildlife experience that will fill your camera and sense of adventure.
For the full taste of the exotic, consider staying at the nearby Green Parrot Beach Resort with its one story beach houses elevated on stilts and with thatched roofs. They were originally built as a Mennonite colony and are cooled exclusively by ceiling fans and the cool breezes off the Bay. It's palm trees and beaches with the jungle at your back door step - a true Robinson Crusoe vacation with in season rates of $150.00 per night (plus 9% tax and applying service charges). For further information on accommodations, services, tours and activities please visit www.greenparrot-belize.com or call 1-743-667-2537.
For those wishing a bit more in traditional accommodations, there is also the Laruba Resort with its variety of lodging options including the Garden, Oceanview, Oceanfront and Penthouse. Rates there run the gamut from $120.00 - $475.00 per night depending on accommodations. They may be visited at www.laruba.com or emailed at infor@Laruba.com . Their toll free number is 1-888-297-1638.
Either of the above is convenient to and offers tours of not only the Sanctuary but Banana Plantations, Dive Boats, Fishing, the Monkey River and Mayan Ruins - each offering their own hiking, swimming, sight-seeing, boating or kayaking experiences plus some of the best beach fronts in the Caribbean.
Belize is bordered on the North by Mexico and Guatemala to the South and West with Placenda a 35 minute flight from the capital of Belize City. It is also accessible by car, a scenic drive down the coastal highway. Placenda itself is a village of about 1,000 people, more then 10% of them North American retirees or immigrants, and like all of Belize English is the official language.
Both Continental and American Airways offer non-stop flights to the Ladyville Airport north of Belize City with hubs in Los Angeles, Houston, Charlotte and Miami. There are also several Charter flights available as well as cruises from Miami. The official travel information website is www.travelbelize.com which features frequently updated information.