Day 26 – So Long Jungle – Hello Ocean

Several people along the way have mentioned this little Oceanside town called Hopkins, that is close to Dangriga.  Everyone says not to go to Dangriga as it’s just a big town with little to do, but that Hopkins, just a bit further south, is really nice, and not touristy.  So, that’s where we decide to head next.

Along the way we stop at Caves Branch to do some Cave Tubing.  This little expedition takes you for a hike into a cave system, along with an inner tube, and then you exit the caves via a 1 hour lazy tube ride in the cave’s river system.  Inside  we got to see bats, cave crickets, cave spiders, some really large prawns, and gorgeous stalagmites and stalagtites.  It was also a wonderful break from the heat and humidity outside.

Afterwards, back on the road, we are treated to the incredibly scenic Hummingbird Highway.  We both agree that this is the sort of place, in the mountains and jungles, that we could retire to.

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Along the Hummingbird Highway

Soon we turn off the highway onto a long dirt causeway towards Hopkins.  They have just recently graded it with heavily compacted sand, so it’s a breeze to go the 4-5 km to the coast.  Not sure where to stay we poke our heads into a few places only to find they are out of our budget, or booked.  We finally find one with availability for $150 USD/night (ouch!), but I’m sure we can find better.  As we’re backing the bike out of their lot a lady asks if we’re looking for a place.  We tell her yes, but with a budget in mind.  She says she manages this hotel, but owns another up the road.  She can give us a room there for $75/night.  Now we’re talking!

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Hopkins Beach. Quiet, with very few tourists

The place is brand new, and still being built.  They don’t even have a sign out front yet.  Inside is clean, with a working AC (the most important feature since the last few nights in the sweltering jungle).  After cooling off we head back to the hotel she manages to eat at her husband’s restaurant (Chef Rob’s), which is highly recommended by everyone we’ve talked to.  Sitting down for our meal, at the only table left (reservations required), we are treated to a wonderful beachside meal.  Amazing fresh baked bread, some of the best fresh seafood we’ve ever had (Rebecca is still talking about the white wine sauce!), and perfect finish with a coconut cream pie.

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Dinner at Chef Rob’s, looking presentable finally out of riding gear

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