Resorts in St. Ignacio, Belize

by Joanne Thomas

As a gateway to the rain forest parks and reserves, underground caves and rivers, and Mayan ruins of Belize's lush interior, as well as an attractive destination in its own right, the town of San Ignacio welcomes visitors with ample lodging options. Resorts in the town tend to incorporate the traditional architectural and decorative styles of the surrounding jungle, offering thatched cottages, rustic hardwood furnishings and outdoor living areas to take full advantage of the scenery.

Midas Resort

Midas Resort is minutes from the heart of San Ignacio and within walking distance from the Mayan ruins of Cahal Pech. A river flowing along the property and lush tropical vegetation throughout provide a rain forest-like atmosphere filled with bird life. The resort offers five accommodation options, including private cottages with shaded verandas and hammocks, deluxe suites with bay windows and private verandas, and a larger two-bedroom cottage with a kitchen and breakfast bar. Guided tours of Cahal Pecj and Crystal Cave, kayaking and horseback riding tours and birdwatching trips to Inland Blue Hole National Park are available directly through the resort.

Chiclero Camp Resort

Chiclero Camp Resort overlooks the Makal River and the town of San Ignacio and is steps from the Cahal Pech archeological site. The resort offers 15 basic guest rooms with fans, 10 air-conditioned guest rooms and five thatched cabanas. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and also offers a wood-paneled bar serving cocktails, wine and draft beer. The resort can arrange many activities in the local area, including cave tubing, tours of the Xunantunich Mayan Temple and excursions to private islands in the Caribbean.

The San Ignacio Resort Hotel

The San Ignacio Resort Hotel offers upscale facilities such as a spa, a swimming pool with jungle views, tennis courts, a patio lounge and a large, marble-floored lobby adorned with original paintings by local artists. All 24 guest rooms are air conditioned and offer rain forest views and Belizean-inspired decor; some rooms feature four-poster beds and the largest suite features a private hot tub on its balcony. The resort boasts a private, 14-acre jungle preserve that includes a stretch of riverfront beach and marked nature trails. The on-site Running W Steakhouse offers indoor and outdoor seating; the Stork Club Bar and Grill presents live musical entertainment.

Maya Mountain Lodge

An adventure jungle lodge owned by an eco-tour company, the Maya Mountain Lodge offers a variety of all-inclusive packages that combine accommodations and meals with various activities and excursions in and around San Ignacio. These include "active adventures" like cave exploration and visits to remote Mayan ruins, packages designed for families with children of all ages, and cooking packages that include lessons in preparing Belizean specialties and shopping for produce at a local market. Room-only rates are available, with a choice of several rooms and suites in the main house as well as individual cottages with a private porch and hammock. The lodge's restaurant prepares a diverse selection of international cuisines that reflect Belize's diverse heritage, including Mayan, Mestizo, Lebanese and Asian dishes prepared using produce from the gardens.

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