Belize 2012 – Day Five: Never Going to Leave

18 Mar

Have you ever found yourself somewhere so wonderful, so beautiful, so unique that you felt completely immersed in the culture with zero effort? When we took the water taxi back to Belize City from San Pedro last year, I got very emotional. I did not want to leave. There was so much more to see, to experience, to soak up with every fibre of my being that I felt almost cheated. What a tease to only have been there for a short 30 hours! This time around, we were determined to see and eat more.

We arrived at Ambergris Caye (San Pedro is the town making up most of the caye) around 12:15. As I got off the water taxi, I inhaled deeply and smiled ear to ear at the scene in front of me: kids playing, little restaurants lining the beach, people moving at about half the speed of Toronto. We sauntered down the beach to our lovely B&B at which we stayed last year, Changes in Latitudes. We were a little early for check-in, but co-owner Renita said it would be no problem to leave our stuff with her and to grab some lunch. Done. Back down the beach we went to our fave beach-lunch spot in San Pedro: Wild Mango’s. Right on the beach, this is a very popular spot and for good reason: the portions are huge, the food comes quickly but you never feel rushed and, of course, it’s damn delicious. Each table comes with three condiments: two spicy fruit salsas and an onion and carrot mix that adds great crunch to your meal:

Everybody salsa!

We already knew we’d be ordering the Baja fish wrap as we’d had it last year and it was probably the single best thing we ate on the trip. What other yummy dish could we order? We settled on the chicken and avocado wrap and, when they arrived, we knew we’d chosen well:

Chicken wrap

Baja fish wrap

Paired with a couple of Belikins, sitting on a great little patio, this meal is tough to beat. The crispy coating on the fish and the lettuce give the wrap a nice crunch and there is enough filling in there to keep you full for hours. The salsas add a nice heat, too, and our little bowls were nearly empty by the time we had finished.

Having happily killed a couple of hours at lunch, we returned to the B&B and discovered that our sleeping quarters had been unexpectedly upgraded! And what an upgrade! We were to stay in the Toucan’s Nest, a beautiful suite upstairs with its own kitchen, living room, second bedroom and porch, bar & hammock included! The porch quickly became known as the Hammock District.

The Hammock District.

After a quick dip at the neighbouring yacht club’s pool, we parked ourselves in the District and debated where to go for dinner. “Let’s just walk til we find somewhere that looks good.” Wise words. We’d done a little bit of reading up before we left Toronto, but we knew from experience that there was a plethora of places from which to choose. So between prior experience and instinct, we felt we would do just fine. We found ourselves at the Blue Water Grill on that very windy evening, a popular spot in the middle of the waterfront strip. It’s a restaurant that features not only local cuisine, but shows local artists’ work on the walls and contributes much back to the community. J decided he wanted the breaded pan-seared snapper  topped with red onion and papaya salsa, accompanied by sweet potato cakes and grilled veggies. The sweet potatoes used were of a local variety and were white, not the orange we expected. The fish, as expected, was excellent and the cakes were crunchy on the outside while light and fluffy on the inside. Yum:

I opted for the grilled snapper in sesame butter sauce, served with wok-cooked vegetables and steamed rice. The fish was tender, flaky and juicy while the veggies were nice and crispy, not at all overcooked. And the sesame butter sauce? To die for. I could put that sauce on everything: chicken, fish, toast…whatever.

We contemplated dessert, but decided instead to go grab some mix for the rum we had back at the B&B and have a couple of nightcaps instead. Fresh pineapple juice & rum in hand, we wrapped up the night hanging out on our porch, staring up at the star-strewn sky and listening to water lap against the beach. Paradise.

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One Response to “Belize 2012 – Day Five: Never Going to Leave”

  1. J March 23, 2012 at 6:45 pm #

    Paradise Indeed!

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