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Belize is a small country in Central America just south of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. The second largest reef in the world, the Mesoamerican Reef, runs along most of the coast of Belize. Only Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is bigger. The reef envelopes more than 400 islands and cays, many in turn sporting their own reefs, with over 50 species of hard and soft coral having been identified in the makeup of those natural underwater ridges. The islands occupy a portion of the Caribbean Sea and abundant sea and bird life is found throughout the archipelago. Manatees and whale sharks along with over 500 species of tropical fish are inhabitants of these waters. Seabirds that take up residency among the islands include the Magnificent Frigate and the Brown Booby. The waters offshore Belize are considered a yachtsman’s paradise providing top notch sailing conditions with abundant opportunities for diving or just lazing on the deck soaking up the sunshine and the awesome beauty of the region.
Breezes averaging between 15 and 22 knots in the form of easterly trade winds can be counted on almost any time of the year. Short passages and line-of-sight navigation insure for relaxing sailing conditions on the typically calm waters sheltered by the abundant islands. Island hopping that includes stops at various restaurants offering Belizean cuisine between dives is typical of the itineraries of sailors in these waters. The Belize Barrier Reef System, a World Heritage Site, includes a series of marine parks lying at the southern end of the island chain. The undeveloped islands and cays present unmatched raw beauty. Fishing in the protected waters of the Barrier
Reef System is prohibited but the balance of the cruising ground offers anglers abundant opportunities. Secluded anchorages abound throughout the island chain.
The town of Plancencia and its harbor is fast earning a reputation as the sailing capital of Belize. The town offers resorts, bed and breakfast accommodation and small hotels where you can ready yourself for your sailing excursion. Bareboat rentals, crewed charters and day sails are readily available with a large choice of craft. Charters are also available at San Pedro on Ambergris Cay. The international airport in Belize City offers service to both locations.
Your dream sailing adventure awaits your participation in the unspoiled western Caribbean waters of Belize. Add it to your list and begin working on the details today.
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