Caye Caulker is a beautiful island off the coast of Belize. It has a laid back vibe, great food, and friendly locals. If you want to get away from it all, this is the perfect place to relax and unwind.
You can visit the local artists, go snorkeling, take a tour around the island, or even try out some diving. Whatever you choose, you’ll have fun exploring Caye Caulker. Here are 6 of the best things to do in Caye Caulker.
How to Get to Caye Caulker
Caye Caulker is located off the coast of Belize, and there are two main options of getting to the island. The quickest way is by a 15 minute flight, costing about $200 USD roundtrip.
A second, and more common option is to take the ferry. While the ferry is a bit longer of a trip, about 45 minutes, the cost is much more affordable. Roundtrip will set you back about $40 USD.
6 Things to Do in Caye Caulker
Snorkel with Sharks
Taking a snorkeling trip in Caye Caulker is definitely an adventure. Most tour companies will offer a half day and a full day tour. The full day tour is worth it if you have the time. There are plenty of operators on the island, but I had a great experience with Caveman Snorkeling.
This is not a trip that just takes you to one location and you snorkel there and then head back. During our trip we visited 5 different areas to snorkel which included the Hol Chan Reserve, Shark Ray Alley, Coral Gardens, Chatos Area, and a sunken barge.
The highlight was definitely being able to jump in at Shark Ray Alley and swim with the nurse sharks. Nurse sharks are known to be on the docile side and not attacking humans. Not only are sharks a possibility but a large variety of fish, turtles, and other sea life can be seen.
*Remember to pack reef safe sunscreen, otherwise you might end up like me… burnt”
Although not quite as popular on the island as snorkeling, there are a few dive shops. If you are a certified scuba diver this is a great place to get some dives in. Most of the dive sites are located to the east of the island.
This is where I ended up doing my first ever night dive and it was such an experience. There are only 2 sites that dove commonly at night. Both have very little current, and are in shallower water. There was an abundance of octopus, lobster and even a sea snake. It was also really cool to see the bioluminescence of the coral.
If you’re up for a bigger adventure of diving, Caye Caulker can also be the start to your Blue Hole Tour.
Visit the Split
The split is the popular hangout spot of Caye Caulker, if you are looking to meet new people this is the place to go. At the split you will find some of the best drinks and food from the Lazy Lizard Bar & Grill, as well as good music.
While you can go swimming here, Caye Caulker is not known for its beaches. The area is a bit rocky so watch your step. There is an awesome platform that you can jump from into the water and a rope swing.
Out of all Caye Caulker this is probably the best place to catch the sunset. Crowds will form every night
Hike through the Estuary of Caye Caulker
The Estuary of Caye Caulker is a unique experience that you will find nowhere else in Caye Caulker. Explore nature trails in the northern part of Caye Caulker and be on the lookout for birds and fauna.
If you are lucky you might even see a crocodile. This is a nature hike and the wooden walkways have seen some better days. Comfortable shoes should be worn, and will make the experience much more enjoyable.
Give some Backscratches at the Caye Caulker Animal Shelter
During my trip I came across the Caye Caulker Animal Shelter by accident one night after eating dinner. The animal shelter is located near Ice and Beans Cafe. I know this sounds crazy but it is much easier to find locations in Caye Caulker by using restaurants and shops rather than street names.
The vibe is really laid back while visiting, when entering just announce yourself. They have no problem with visitors, but be prepared to be licked! If you have the time, ask Kenny (the owner of the animal shelter) if you can help with anything. Volunteers are usually welcomed and can help with small chores such as feeding.
While not required donations can be very helpful as the island is small and not always easy to get everything that is needed.
See Local Art at the Red Flower Gallery
The Red Flower Gallery showcases the art of Paullete Salo, who currently lives on Caye Caulker. She creates her paintings full of colorful iconic images of Island life. Although not originally from Belize, her paintings reflect the feelings she has living in this beautiful area.
Open everyday except Sunday it is worth stopping by and looking at the art she has, or even stopping to have a chat. Oh, and not only can you find art but you can also buy “It Works”, a natural bug repellent developed by Paullete with her background in biochemistry. I wish I would’ve discovered this on the first day I was here, as it really does work!