Dubbed the Year of the Festivals, 2019 is brimming with exciting festivals – especially in the summer – in Belize. You may have been fortunate enough to witness most of them yourself, or they have been sitting in your bucket list for a while. If you’re not sure which ones you should attend (short answer: all of them), here’s a list of the biggest festivals in Belize and what makes them so.
- Lobster Festivals. Of course the endeared Lobster Fest has to be ranked number one, as many travelers fly to the North Islands or Placencia for this precise reason. There are three Lobster Festivals in the summer: San Pedro Lobster Fest, Caye Caulker Lobster Fest and Placencia Lobster Fest. Caye Caulker and Placencia are considered the pioneers of the Lobster fest, with hotels and resorts booked months in advance for the festival. San Pedro has been gaining traction for the past few years and no matter which festival you choose, there will be an abundance of lobster. Lobster dip, lobster pizza, lobster burger, lobster everything. There is also many entertainment options, food competitions and displays of art.
- Costa Maya. One of the most highly anticipated, this festival aims to honor the Mundo Maya in our Latin America Region. The event, hosted in the island town of San Pedro, is considered one of the biggest cultural events, with various entertainment, performances and of course, the main event: the Costa Maya beauty pageant. Delegates from the various Mundo Maya countries vying for the crown of Reina de la Costa Maya strut the stage. Their colorful cultural costumes alone is enough to want to attend the lively festival. With food galore, entertainment for the little ones and cultural performances, it’s an event you don’t want to miss.
- Chocolate Festival. The name alone will want you venturing to Punta Gorda in Southern Belize to see what a chocolate festival really is about. Celebrated in May, this fest is hosted in what’s known as the ‘chocolate capital of Belize.’ A three-day affair, the event honors the magical fruit that was used as currency long ago: cacao. Local chocolatiers and chocolate-enthusiasts (who isn’t?) head to Punta Gorda to indulge in all things chocolate. The festival is said to promote sustainable tourism throughout the district. Competitions, family-friendly activities and musical shows encompass the event. The high-energy fest culminates at the sacred Maya site of Nim Li Punit.
- Placencia Sidewalk Art Festival. Art aficionados, gather up! The beautiful silk-sandy peninsula of Placencia is alight with activity in February for the art festival. Held on the world’s narrowest street, artisans and their booths line up the sidewalk. You will see all types of art, from your canvassed paintings and wooden sculptures to butterfly-wing art and hand-made sea glass jewelry. You’re bound to leave with at least one Lionfish necklace or at least the new-found knowledge of how to make chocolate out of raw cacao. If you’re not up for sampling some of the delicious festival food, the beach-front restaurants are mere steps away.
This short list is not exhaustive as Belize hosts many festivals in various districts. If you’d like to know more about festivals in Belize, feel free to contact us at 1-800-624-0686 or email us at [email protected].