Despite its tiny size, Belize has a plethora of big surprises that delight travelers time and time again. Whether unearthing a historical fact or figuring out why we are obsessed with weird animals, visitors leave with an arsenal of Belize trivia at their disposal. (Which is handy to have at cocktail parties, we’re sure.) Here is a list of quirky facts about Belize.
Belize Facts that May Surprise You:
- Was colonized by Great Britain. Not that long ago, this teeny country used to be a British colony; before the lovable punny name of Belize, we were known as British Honduras (which doesn’t have the same ring to it, don’t you agree?) Then in 1973 we adopted the new name, which now spawns the various ‘un-BELIZE-able’ Instagram hashtags. (For more on Belize history, read here.)
- National Animal is the Tapir. While most would not use ‘cute’ as the first word to describe tapirs, we protect our adorable, long-nosed mammals at all costs. The Belize Zoo even has a Tapir Project where all efforts and organizations’ fundraising go towards the conservation of the chubby critters.
- Has UNESCO World Heritage Site. Everyone knows about the Great Blue Hole, but did you know its actually named by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site? The 410-ft deep sinkhole off the coast of Belize is apparently so impressive that it is now legally protected by international treaties. Now you have to add it to your bucket list.
- English is the official language. This may not be news to recurring visitors, but most newcomers are pleasantly surprised when they find that we speak their mother tongue. This makes for easier communication amongst tourists. If diversity is what you’re after, we also speak Spanish, Creole, German, Chinese and Hindi, to name a few.
- 103 Protected Areas. Our preservation efforts have often been praised. Flying overhead, instead of seeing jutting sky-scrapers and freeways, you have the privilege of witnessing a vast sea of green.
These are just a handful of facts that are worthy of knowing while visiting the Central American country. For even more facts on Belize, feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us toll-free at 1-800-624-0686.