Belize embraces a beguiling mix of Caribbean and Latin cultures, infused with a colonial history brought to its shores by British settlers. English-speaking, Creole-dominated with a thoroughly coup-free history, this tiny country has an atmosphere that couldn’t be more laid-back. Tourism may be unashamedly big business, but visitors rarely feel commodified. The local people are friendly, open and relaxed, and everyoun here seems to know how to have a good time.

lt rains less in the first half of the year, but you’ll probably be too relaxed to care either way

Flying into Belize City, then hightailing it out to the beaches as quickly as possible Ordering a Belikin beer, then ordering another one Riding the bus into Belmopan, Belize’s capital city, still wondering if you’ve arrived as you drive out the other side Snorkelling in the impossinbly warm waters of the Caribbean Sea Exploring Belize’s many beautiful Mayan ruins

Read Belizioun Cuisine, a collection of 200 dishes that demonstrate the richness of Belize’s multicultural past

Listen to the Garifuna rhythms, culture and politics of Andy Palacio’s Til Da Mawnin

Watch The Mosquito Coast, starring Harrison Ford and River Phoenix, which flaunts the lush beauty of Belize’s interior (though setting to be neighbouring Honduras)

Eat the two main dishes on a Belizean menu; ‘rice and beans’ and ‘beans and rice’-either way, it tastes great with a dash of Marie Sharp’s famous hot sauce

Drink Belize’s famous Belikin deer, which always goes down a treat

You better Belize it! (cringeworthy but ubiquitous)

Mayan ruins; ‘surf-and turf’;diving the Blue Hole; Marie Sharp;s famous hot sauce

Listening in on a conversation in a curious language, only to realize the language is English; it is actually possible to fill an entire day doing absolutely nothing

The looking for relaxation, adventure and wildlife in a small, easy-to-get-around package will be enamoured by Belize, and indeed, many travelers return year after year. You’ll get the best of both worlds here-there’s a well-trodden tourist trail, and all Central American country with unlimited opportunities for adventure.

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