With so many things to see and do on Caye Caulker, we’ve compiled our Top 5 Things to do in Caye Caulker. Travelling on a budget, the Blue Hole was slightly out of our price bracket, but this article aims to show you that there is plenty to do from this island paradise.
Caye Caulker is a small island an hour off the coast of Belize City. The island itself is beautiful and has a distinctly Caribbean feel, immediately making you relaxed. With fabulous food, incredible wildlife and beautiful sunsets, like us, you might find it hard to leave.
If you are considering a trip to Central America then Caye Caulker might be everything you’re looking for. Ideal for those that don’t speak much Spanish, English is spoken in Belize. You can fly to Belize City, jump on a boat and be on the island the same day.
It’s such a friendly atmosphere and we met some incredible people during our time on the island which always enhances any experience.
With tons of things to do on Caye Caulker, we have compiled a list of our 5 favourite things. We hope you enjoy them as much as we did!
Table of Contents
Hol Chan Reserve
An absolute must, whether you snorkel or dive is to go to the Hol Chan Reserve. We did the snorkelling tour to Hol Chan with Raggamuffin Tours and it was absolutely incredible. You go out on a sailing boat and head towards the Hol Chan Reserve which is closer to Ambergris Caye, so takes about an hour to get to.
As we arrived at the first stop we saw a turtle before we even put our snorkels on! You then jump in the water and start snorkelling. Throughout our guide was so informative pointing at things underwater and then coming to the surface to tell us all about the species of fish, corals and other sea life we were seeing. Their knowledge is vast and being in the reserve there is plenty to see.
After the first stop, we had a great lunch which was cooked by the chef on board and was eaten by us as we dangled our legs over the side of the boat.
Then we headed to Shark & Ray Alley which was an absolute show stopper as the name implies. Here the water is teeming with fish, rays and sharks. Raggamuffin doesn’t feed the wildlife and we were really glad we went with a tour that refrains from feeding the sea life. We found that the sharks and rays come to the boat when you arrive anyway so in no way does this detract from your tour. The reef sharks are in no way interested in humans, but seeing them up close is an unforgettable experience. This had to be one of our top 5 things to do in
The third and final stop was the coral garden which was very beautiful. After this final stop, it was time to head home and we had ceviche and non-stop rum punch for the whole journey back. Heaven. Some other tours go to more places and some people got to see manatees but we loved our trip. The Raggamuffin crew are so friendly and professional, it’s a brilliant company.
Raggamuffin also advertise a 3 day trip to Dangriga which we desperately wanted to go on but was totally out of our budget. You snorkel, fish and sleep on stunning islands en route to Dangriga. We met a lovely Dutch couple who did the trip and they said it was their highlight of Belize.
Spearfishing was a new experience for both us and we loved it. We had a small but really fun group of people on the boat with us and the whole day was amazing. You effectively have a whole day of snorkelling over the most beautiful reefs. You are shown the fish you are allowed to catch and then given a quick lesson on the spearguns and how they work.
Then armed with your spearguns you head into the water with your partner for a day in the water searching the beautiful corals for fish. On the way back to the boat, having caught a fish, we soon realised that we were swimming with nurse sharks nearby. I’m not going to lie, everyone was slightly freaked out the first time they saw them even though we knew the sharks didn’t pose a threat. But what if they wanted our fish?! But of course, they just ignored us.
It was an incredible day of snorkelling and catching some fish for dinner. Eating your catch afterwards was the best reward. We even managed to catch a lobster which was a real treat.
After the day was finished we had time to shower and then we headed back to the shop. A table was set up on the street and we sat there with all the people that had been on the trip, sipping rum and eating the coconut rice with yummy fish and vegetables that they’d prepared. A great day followed by a delicious meal.
Sunset at Iguana Bar with friends
Not only are the sunsets spectacular from this lovely spot, but the wildlife there is worth a visit in its own right. There is a seahorse farm there and you’ll need sharp eyes to try and see them as they are tiny.
Whilst you sit looking out over the ocean, pelicans and other birds wander around the decking waiting to be fed. There is a little show when the birds are fed fishes and you can get involved too.
Stingrays gather nearby in the water and even some larger fish / dolphins / nurse sharks have been seen at the end of the pier, so there is plenty to entertain you before the sun starts to dip in the sky.
Due to the incredible amount of wildlife, this ranks highly on our list of top 5 things to do in Caye Caulker.
Sunset is happy hour and the ‘panty rippers’ (bad name, great drink) are $5 BZ during happy hour. A good session at the Iguana often turns into a night out. If you fancy a change from the Sports Bar, the Lizard (which is usually very expensive) does “Ladies Night” on Thursday. Girls get vodkas for free.
See all the wildlife on the island
In addition to the incredible snorkelling trips and Iguana Bar you should visit the tarpon pond. Tarpons are protected species and you aren’t allowed to fish them anymore. There is an area off Caye Caulker where they gather and you can buy some food and feed them for only $5 BZ.
You are also able to see lots of fish off the dock near the split. Hundreds of colourful fish swim in the clear water whilst you swing your legs over the side of the dock. We even did some fishing here (not tarpons obviously!)
In addition, our hostel was on crocodile street and we even saw a baby crocodile out the back of our hostel.
Eat lots of great budget food
When we first arrived on Caye Caulker we were concerned that all the food was really expensive. We soon learnt that there are lots of great budget options.
- Fry jack stand for breakfast in between Bella’s Backpackers and the nightclub (4BZ). These are greasy and naughty but so good.
- Burrito stand found near the basketball court / swings (5BZ) Possibly the biggest burrito we’ve ever seen, let alone tried to eat. We were still full the next day!
- Mama’s Liz’s yummy fried chicken with rice and coleslaw (10BZ) & beef with coconut rice, coleslaw and bean soup (12BZ). Mama Liz is found upstairs in the kitchen at Dirty McNasty’s Hostel. Again huge portions.
- Enormous portions at Yummy Yummy – the prawn stir fry and the kung po chicken were fantastic. One meal is enough for two!
- Delicious jerk chicken, coconut rice, garlic bread & vegetables at Easy restaurant on the main strip plus a rum punch (12BZ).
Some friends kayaked over to Cocos Beach. They said this had the best beach, a great bar and a fantastic view for sunset. Caye Caulker doesn’t have great beaches, so this is definitely worth the trip if you want a day relaxing on the sand. The view for sunset is also meant to be spectacular. If you don’t want to kayak you can get a water taxi or there is a free boat that takes you over and back to Caye Caulker.
Caye Caulker is located by mangroves, so in the evening mosquito come out to play. We highly recommend you use Skin so Soft as a mosquito repellant, as it’s not as harsh on your skin as DEET products and it’s great at keeping insects away.
We totally fell in love with this gorgeous island. Your experience can be as relaxed or as party-oriented as you choose and it’s great that the island can cater to whatever people are looking for.
Friendly locals and chilled travellers mix in a beautiful Caribbean setting with exceptional wildlife and lots of rum punch. What’s not to love?
Let us know if you head to Caye Caulker and let us know if you tried any of our top 5 things to do in Caye Caulker?