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Punta Gorda, Belize


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Location


Punta Gorda (or "P.G." to the locals) is the southernmost town on the Belizean mainland, found in the Toledo District. This area lays claim to the highest rainfall and humidity levels found in Belize, which creates an incredibly lush jungle. This zone is the most remote and least explored...a true adventurers dream!

History & Culture


Punta Gorda is still a slow-paced, relaxed town, unpretentious and small enough to walk around. Residents ride by on bicycles and shout friendly greetings. It seems like everyone is on a first-name basis. Townspeople stroll along the five main streets running parallel to the sea. A few decades ago, Punta Gorda was a remote outpost reachable only by boat. For many years fishing was the town's livelihood, but in recent days more people have embraced farming.

Perhaps no other area in Belize keeps its various traditional cultures so intact. The surrounding Mayan villages have developed methods for sustainable agriculture, and all sorts of goodies can be purchased at the local market which opens every other day. Aside from produce, handcrafted items from local Mayan artists can be found in abundance. Creole, Garifuna, Chinese, and East Indian people also populate villages in the Toledo district. Most residents of the area are multilingual, speaking some combination of Creole, Garifuna, English, Kekchi Maya, Mopan Maya, and Spanish.

Lodging & Dining


You'll feel right at home at Belize Lodge and The Lodge at Big Falls. These beautiful jungle lodges have service and quaint luxury down to a "T".

Activities


Punta Gorda is a wondrous place for those interested in witnessing firsthand how the ancient Maya culture still exists in modern times. While there is not much night life in PG, it is a great base location for exploring the Mayan archeological sites of Lubaantun and Nim Li Punit. Mayan villages are scattered throughout the area, and visitors can engage in all sorts of active pursuits within the almost virgin rainforest that encompasses this region.

Hiking trails connect the villages as well as the many different natural attractions. Jungle lined rivers, perfect for kayaking, drain the pristine forests of the southern flank of the Maya Mountains. Fishing is excellent where these rivers empty into the Caribbean Sea.

The coral reef offers excellent swimming, snorkeling and SCUBA diving opportunities. Manatee spotting at the mangroves is also a possibility for all nature lovers. Birders will find this area of southern Belize to be a little slice of heaven.



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