Anyone ever been to Belize, and have any thoughts on food, including at hotels, in the rainforesty/ruiny area in the southwest and/or in the Ambergris Caye area? What about Costa Rica?
It is time to plan a winter vacation, and while wildlife and/or ancient civilizations are the main thing this time around, food is always a consideration.
Generally speaking, Belize is not a great culinary destination. You won't starve or get ill there, but for the most it's pretty basic, uninventive food. On the coast (I haven't been to the cayes), you'll mostly find stewed fish and rice, or stewed chicken and rice. The pineapples are wonderful though, and the coconut rice is nice, and maybe you can find some gibnut somewhere (like a hamster). Hotels have a wide variety of food, but at least in Placencia their reach tended to exceed their grasp. Again, you won't starve or go without adequate nutrition, but after a week or so there, it's pretty dull.
Been to both countries.
Belize- Rum Point down in Placencia is a cool, funky, upscale plce with really good food - the best I found in the country. In the Cayo area F.F. Copola has a beautiful hotel that suposedly also has really good food.
I really disliked most of the food I had in Ambergris - but the awesome diving totally makes up for it. In general, stick to the basics, grilled fresh seafod and lots of Belikan's.
If you go, make sure you visit Tikal, one of the most incredible places I've ever been (and we actuallyhad decentfood at the roadside restaurant at the parks enterance).
Costa Rica- Go for the widlife, not the ruins or diving like in Belize. Stay off the well beaten tourist path and go to Osa Peninsla, home of Corcovado Park. We stayed at Lapa Rios -a great lodge with decent food. Again, the food overall isn't too impressive in Costa Rica, but better than in Belize.
I could go on and on, if you want more info, plase e-mail me.
Belize: Ambergris Cay is great for diving and snorkeling and fishing, but not much worthwhile on land.
If you want to visit an untouched rainforest, though, Belize has a little gem of a place that we love: Chan Chich Lodge. It's a small lodge built on a Mayan temple plaza. Lots of digs going on in the area, but mostly you go for the birds and the animals and bugs and the unbelievable towering trees. Breakfasts are terrific, and there's tons of tropical fruit and locally grown coffee. See link below.
If you go to Cayo, in the west, try to get over the border to Tikal. What amazing ruins.(I ate mediocre chicken there along with the ubiquitous coca colas and orange squirts.)
Costa Rica: There are lots of choices, none that I'd recommend for the chow. Though I was blown away by the number of banana varieties I saw in a little market on the Pacific coast near Manuel Antonio Park.
Dont have much to add - except that a lady from Belize in my church used to bring some of the best rice and red beans ever - with coconut milk, salt pork or some kind of tiny pork bits (ears maybe!)and a bit of scotch bonnet.
With luck youll find some good simple homestyle cooking,some good grilled local fish at your resort and delicious lime drinks and fruits.
Enjoy your trip!