Monday, January 17, 2011

Where to live in Belize? San Ignacio

San Ignacio and it's sister town of Santa Elena make up Belize's second largest urban area.  San Ignacio and Santa Elena are separated by the Macal River and Belize's only suspension bridge, the one lane Hawksworth Bridge which was built in 1949.

San Ignacio is very close to the Mountain Pine Ridge region where you can see some of the most beautiful waterfalls that Belize has to offer.  It also is a popular tourist destination in Belize with backpackers visiting and the Cayo District offers a wide variety of outdoor activities for those seeking some adventure.

San Ignacio is known by locals as the "Cayo" district and is located long the Western Highway and is approximately 70 miles or about a 90 minute drive from Belize City and only 9 miles east from the Guatemalan border.

Burns Avenue is the "Main Drag" in town and has many shops, hotels and places to eat. 
San Ignacio was originally names "El Cayo"  before being changed in the 1960's. El Cayo survived two major fires. The first fire was in 1966 and the second fire was 1972. The entire Burns Avenue was destroyed.

Getting to San Ignacio from Belize City:

Plane - All of the major tour operators offer airport shuttles, but they generally do not run with fewer than 4 passengers.

Bus - Bus services run approximately every half hour between 5:00 to 8:00pm.  The bus trip generally takes about 2 1/2.

Car - You can rent a car and take the Western Highway from Belize City.  You will go through the town of Santa Elena first and across the Macal River is where San Ignacio is located. 

Things to do and see in the Cayo Area:

1.  Xunantunich Archaeological Site-Ancient Maya City
2.  Chechem Ha Cave and Vaca Plateau-
3.  Caracol Archaeological Site
4.  Medicinal Jungle Trail and Iguana Exhibit
5.  Actun Tunichi Muknal
6.  Thousand Foot Falls-Central America's Highest Waterfall
7.  Belize Botanic Gardens-Lots of Hiking Trails-Learn about the Medicinal and Ritual Plants of the Maya
8.  Cahal Pech Archaeological Site-Discovered in the early 1950's


  1. Very interesting. My daughter has been there and loved it..hoping to make that trip sometime myself.

  2. Thanks for stopping by my blog. It is a very beautiful area and you should definitely check it out if you get to make the trip some day.

  3. great post, thanks !!

    Belize Magnificent Mayan Tours, Welcomes you to Belize. For an Unforgettable Adventure package tours and a life time filled with memories..

  4. Thanks for stopping by BMMT. I will check it out.

  5. Future X-Pat looking for some one living their now. I would like some info, thanks Smitty


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