Caribbean Sailing Vacations by Ed Hamilton




Explore Belize on your own private charter yacht.
There's no better way to see this great cruising ground

If you have ever wanted to cruise and explore a large barrier reef, Belize is for you. The longest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere, the second longest in the world, Belize offers protected sailing, world class diving, snorkeling, fishing and kayaking, and is easily accessable via regular flights from Houston and Miami.

This destination is considered best for more experienced cruisers and charterers, as once you leave the base you will be primarily on your own. With to many islands and cays to count, most of which are uninhabited, this remote cruising area provides almost unlimited cruising options starting from either San Pedro on Ambergis Cay in the North, or Placencia on the mainland in the South. Because the water is fairly shallow, catamarans are the norm here but there are a few monohulls as well.

Belizeans are well known for being very friendly and peace-loving, but like most areas of the Caribbean don't expect speedy service as everything moves at a slower pace here. Once your charter is over, you should consider some shore based activity where you can paddle a canoe down a jungle river, explore Mayan ruins, hike in the mountains, or stroll along the trails at the world's only Jaguar preserve? Belize is truly an unspoiled and unique getaway.
Please give me details of suitable yachts.

Questions about a cruising ground? Email us

Guidelines for arranging a charter in Belize - what to ask:
What type of yacht should I charter? For bareboats, the main difference about booking a boat in Belize is that the fleets are small so it's best to book early. There is no doubt that early "bookers" get the best selection. Most of the boats are cats but there are a few mono-hulls as well. The cats are the preferred choice as the waters are shallow in most areas.

There are very few crewed yachts that base in Belize, but some boats move there for the spring and early summer months when the Eastern Caribbean winter season slows. We can also sometimes find a yacht that is heading towards the Pacific and will consider a charter on the way.

Where should I start and finish my charter? Belize offers two bareboat locations to start and finish, San Pedro on the island of Ambergris Cay in the North, and Placencia on the mainland in the south. Both are attractive and if you have the time, one way charters from either are an option. Shore side support, shopping and accommodations are better in San Pedro, but either way you can find most basic items.

What does it cost? General costs are about the same in Belize as most Caribbean locations, but there are virtually no budget operations here. Boat prices range from a low of around $2000.00 per week for a small mono-hull in the summer to just over $10,000. for a big cat in high season.

How do I book? Belize really is a different kind of experience, so the best advise is to give us a call so we can talk about your expectations.

All boats look great on the internet, so it is important to use a broker who knows the boats personally and can give you unbiased advice. For crewed charters, the crew is generally more important than the boat, particularly on smaller charters. A good broker will ensure your money is kept in an escrow account rather than given to the boat, and can make sure you use the correct contracts etc.. We have 33 years experience in arranging charters. The next stage is to tell us what you are looking for so that we can send you a selection of yachts that fit your requirements.

Ask us to suggest some boats and crews