Visitors to Punta Gorda (PG) Town, located in the Southern most Toledo District of Belize, are probably familiar with the popular activities available for tourists in the villages or outskirts of town, like archaeological site tours or waterfall trips, but there is also much to do in town for prices that are easier on the pocket.
Guerilla Tours has put together a comprehensive list of ten of those things to enjoy while in PG, without having to pay for a tour or leaving town limits.
1.) Market - It begins with something as simple as visiting the market in the mornings when a variety of fresh produce, meats and sea food are on display by farmers, livestock rearers and fishermen. Participate in Belizean culture by taking a stroll and viewing the stalls or even picking up some items for a healthy breakfast.
2.) Kayaking - Second on the list is kayaking up the Moho River or in the Caribbean sea, using kayaks that can be rented from Garbutt's Marina for a small fee. The marina is conveniently located at an area known as Joe Taylor Creek where the mentioned river meets the Caribbean sea, providing kayakers with the option to paddle in either of the two. After just a 5 minute bicycle ride from the heart of town, one can experience a scenic afternoon on the water with life jackets given to every kayaker by the marina for safety.
3.) Restaurants - Eating at local restaurants comes third on the list and of course there are the widely known eateries like Walucos and Asha's to name a couple but many other fine cooks offer tasty Belizean cuisine around town. Places like Joycelin's Cuisine on the seaside serve up meals to delight taste buds for less than Bz $20, with a sea view from her deck. Other equally good choices include Rainbow Cafe, Martina's Kitchen, Marian's Bayview, Mirian's Restauarant and last but certainly not the least, A Piece of Ground Restaurant, Bar and Hotel. Friendly locals or cab drivers will be glad to assist with directions to any of these places and may even have recommendations of their own.
4.) Hiking - For nature lovers, a steep hike up Cerro Hill is a nice way to occupy a few hours and is free of cost, making it number four on the list. Located about a fifteen minute bike ride from the main part of town, the hill is a popular adventure trail for locals and is accessible to anyone with a thirst for adventure. Upon arrival at the top, a gorgeous view is presented and good grounds for camping or a cookout.
5.) Bike riding - Another option which would be more on the layed back side of things, is exploring the town on bike or by foot since it's not too big to walk through in a matter of hours. Serveral places offer bike rentals at really low prices for those interested in taking a ride around town and getting familiar with their surroundings.
6.) Drum lessons - Sixth on the list is drum lessons with Mr. Ronald McDonald at his Garifuna Drum School on New Road. Ronald is one of the best drummers in Belize and offers fun classes to tourists at his place called "Warasa Drum School", not too far from the middle of town. An exact price for these classes was not ascertained but they are an inexpensive way to submerge in the Garifuna Culture.
7.) Swimming - Swimming is a must while in Punta Gorda, Belize and many piers offer perfect sunbathing venues with breath taking views of the sea and sometimes even the Cayes on days when the waters are still. Since PG is a coastal town, it's entire coast is bordered by the Caribbean Sea, making swimming a major part of local activities, yet again free of cost.
8.) Chocolate Factory Tour - Located near the Uno Gas Station and easy to find is the Cotton Tree Chocolate Factory where Belizean chocolate is made from locally grown cacao beans inside a small concrete structure on Front Street, Punta Gorda. Tours of the small factory are offered to anyone who asks and costs little to nothing. The chocolates are also available for sale and would make for great gifts to take back home.
9.) Sea Glass Beach - The ninth item on the list is a visit to a unique seaside are dubbed as 'Sea Glass Beach' where almost fossilised pieces of glass litter the beach. It's not a popular area but some locals gather the glass to make fashion jewelry for sale and it's surely worth visiting.
10.) Fishing - Rounding off the list at number ten is a worldwide favorite passtime and of course it makes use of the vast sea. That is fishing and with some of the world's best fly fishing spots and tour guides, leaving PG without casting a line or realing a rod should be considered a crime. Without leaving town, one can easily purchase hand fishing lines with hooks and small sinkers for less than Bz$5 and throw them off any of the 7 piers in town where locals catch fish in their spare time.
So there they are; ten things that you probably wouldn't do while in Punta Gorda, Belize because they aren't advertised on the internet or usually done by tourists. This list was put together by Guerilla tours to add affordable fun into your next Punta Gorda trip.