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Lighthouse Reef Adventure

From: $ 1,375
More info

Highlights

  • Explore and stay on remote and renowned Lighthouse Reef Atoll
  • Spend four nights in a tent-walled cabana at our all-inclusive Adventure Basecamp on Half Moon Caye, a protected island managed by the Belize Audubon Society and home to 4000 red-footed boobies!
  • Snorkel ‘the Aquarium,’ as well as Jacques Cousteau’s legendary Blue Hole.
  • Stay overnight at Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary, with early morning bird and wildlife viewing on a boat tour of the Crooked Tree lagoon.
  • Enjoy additional service of airport pickup, accommodation and dinner with your group on your ‘day 0’ plus accommodation in Belize City at the end of your trip

Flights & Transport

Only ground transport

The Lighthouse Reef Adventure starts with an overnight inland discovery of Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary, then heads out by boat to Lighthouse Reef, fifty-five miles off the shores of the Belize mainland.

Lodging on the mainland is included before and after trip, as well as dinner on Day 0 and a Crooked Tree lagoon boat tour on Day 1.  

Lighthouse Reef atoll is a tropical marine park and designated world heritage site offering unparalleled snorkeling and paddling. The Half Moon Caye Basecamp is well suited for families and couples of mixed abilities, offering a choice of guided activities on the reef and the flexibility for traveling companions to do things together or separately. All abilities welcome!

 

Island Expeditions Travel Reviews & Ratings

4.8 out of 5

98%

recommend

62 Reviews

  • Excellent 51
  • Great 11
  • Average 0
  • Disappointing 0
  • Terrible 0

Rating Details

  • Value
    4.8
  • Guide
    4.8
  • Activities
    4.8
  • Lodging
    4.8
  • Transportation
    4.8
  • Meals
    4.8

Lighthouse Reef Adventure

100% Recommend
100% Recommend

This was a wonderful trip!

5.0
December 2016
Recommend: Yes
This was a wonderful trip. The guides were very attentive, knowledgeable, and aware of us at all times. We really enjoyed the snorkeling and found the accommodations suited us perfectly.

Why did you choose to travel with Island Expeditions?:
Our friends had been there before and were returning

What was the highlight of your trip?:
The snorkeling and yoga

What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
Get a container to avoid the long trek at night to the toilets! We spent extra nights before the trip at Crooked Tree and that was wonderful.
Read more
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

It was wonderful!

5.0
December 2016
Recommend: Yes
This was our first trip to Belize and we went with 8 other friends in their 70s. It was wonderful. It is funny that it comes up as a "resort" as in fact it is 10 high wall tents on a wooden base and good beds inside. One walks to the composting toilet ( clean and efficient) dodging the hermit crabs on the pathway. The food is superb.. Even after 8 days we were still getting wonderful papaya and pineapple and fresh salads. It is totally off grid and 2 hours away from the mainland by a big boat. Once there, you are away from it. Early morning with a yoga lesson on the beach at sunrise, then on to the activities of the day. Everything is weather dependent and we were very lucky: enjoying fabulous snorkeling. The Blue Hole is the best snorkeling I have ever done, including the Galapagos, the Great Reef, Hawaii and Malaysia. We kayaked, tried paddle boards and one day rigged sails on our kayaks and sailed to the next reef. They are very safety conscious. We always had two guides with us in the water and one nearby watching from a boat. Yes we pushed ourselves a bit and were challenged--but enjoyed every minute.

Others who we met that had been on Ambergris Caye and Glovers Reef were complaining of mosquitoes and sandflies. We didn't have that problem. Audubon was on the reef as it is where the red footed boobies nest and the frigate birds nest. The birds were there in February so it was also a treat. The company is Island Expeditions that runs the trips; a Canadian company.

Room Tip: this is an adventure camp--not a resort. All rooms are oceanfront!!!

Why did you choose to travel with Island Expeditions?:
went with friends who had been the year before

What was the highlight of your trip?:
the Blue Hole snorkel followed by the magical yoga mornings

What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
Do it...you are never too old!!
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  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Excellent underwater pictures!

5.0
December 2016
Recommend: Yes
I spent 5 days on Half Moon Caye and had the best time of my life. This trip exceeded my expectation of adventure, natural beauty and relaxation. Excellent food was prepared by Oliver and Anna. The Blue Hole trip had world class snorkeling and views of the coral. My pictures were like the ones on National Geographic TV . I recommend future guests to rent an underwater camera for some excellent underwater pictures.

Why did you choose to travel with Island Expeditions?:
Great reviews and found in local newspaper Telegram and gazette Worcester MA

What was the highlight of your trip?:
Blue hole diving and underwater pictures

What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
Rent an underwater camera before you go only $70 for a week
Read more
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Great staff, Tasty Food, Lots of opportunities to learn!

5.0
December 2016
Recommend: Yes
Plenty of activities. Great staff. Tasty Food. Lots of opportunities to learn. Equipment in good shape.

Why did you choose to travel with Island Expeditions?:
My wife traveled with IE in the past and had a great experience.

What was the highlight of your trip?:
Opening a coconut with a machete

What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
Wear long sleeves and long tights while snorkeling to protect from the sun. Way easier than sun screen plus it's safer for the reef and the sea life.
Read more
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Kayak sailing It was amazing!!

5.0
December 2016
Recommend: Yes
My second trip to Lighthouse Reef was even better than my first awesome trip. Kayak sailing is always the highlight of my trip. It was amazing. There were great snorkel trips with a variety of sea life. This was my first time night snorkeling and visiting the blue hole. The chef (Bol) and his team made fantastic meals from scratch and took time to address all of my food allergies. Love you Bol!
Each time I come, I wish that I could stay longer. Some people stayed over for a second week. I think that they had the right idea. Maybe next time…

Why did you choose to travel with Island Expeditions?:
I originally chose Island Expeditions, because they do trips for REI. Now I choose them, because I know I will have a great trip.

What was the highlight of your trip?:
Kayak sailing

What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
I have done the Getaway and the Adventure trips. Take the longer trip if you can swing it. You will be glad for the extra days..
Read more
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Itinerary

Day 0:

Meals: Dinner

Accommodation: Birds Eye View Lodge

Arrive at the Belize International Airport where an Island Expeditions’ representative will meet you and welcome you to the country. You’ll be taken to the Bird’s Eye View Lodge in the Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary. The Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary, with its swamps, wetlands and four lagoons, provides an ideal resting place for thousands of migrating and resident birds.

After checking into your accommodations you’ll have a chance to meet your fellow travelers, enjoy a meal and if time permits, explore Crooked Tree Village. Crooked Tree Village is one of Belize’s oldest Creole Settlements. Airport transfers, dinner and lodging are included. Day 0 is the day to meet your fellow travelers, and acclimatize to your new tropical environment.

Day 1:

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Half Moon Caye Basecamp

Coffee is served at sunrise. With your binoculars in hand you’ll enjoy the sounds and sights of the awakening wilderness. There are usually several hundred birds of many species feeding in front of the lodge along the shores of the Crooked Tree lagoons. After a healthy Belizean breakfast, you’ll embark by boat to explore the surrounding areas. Throughout this adventure, our aim is to provide you with tremendous birding and wildlife opportunities. Turtles, parrots, ibis, Morelet’s crocodiles, and Iguanas are frequently seen.

Weather permitting, later in the morning you’ll be driven along the “Old Belize Road” to the seashore where you’ll board a motor charter. This charter takes you through white sand cayes, mangrove ranges, and beyond the main Barrier Reef to Lighthouse Reef Atoll. Lighthouse Reef Atoll is located at the furthest edge of the Belizean Reef System. It is 55 miles offshore of the mainland. Upon reaching Half Moon Caye, your guide team will orient you to your new island setting and help you settle into your accommodations. You’ll then enjoy a late lunch and an afternoon snorkel or kayak around Half Moon Caye.

Day 2-4:

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Half Moon Caye Basecamp

Due to its isolated location from the mainland, the waters of Lighthouse Reef Atoll are exceptionally clear, with inspiring scenery, and a fabulously rich reef system. This ecosystem offers some of the best kayaking, snorkeling, and diving in the Caribbean. To begin, our guides will provide professional instruction - teaching you the fundamentals of sea kayaking, snorkeling, and safety in the waters of the tropics.

Over the next few days, you’ll have many options to explore, including a shipwreck, which looms just north of the caye. In 1971, a ship named the Ermlund lost power during a storm and was deposited on the reef by a large wave. This 4000 ton wreck rests silently as a landmark, and is one of many shipwrecks in the area. It serves as a constant reminder of the navigational hazards in these waters. You’ll also have ample opportunities to learn from our guides about the marine reef ecology, the island’s mangrove, and the interior forest habitat. This area of the park consists of 45 acres. Many species of birds nest on the island, including a 4000 red-footed booby colony. The Audubon Society has built a series of viewing platforms to intimately observe the many nesting sites. And of course, we always give you the option of hanging out in a hammock with a good book and a cold beverage!

Day 5:

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Half Moon Caye Basecamp

The "aquarium" is today’s big adventure. You’ll pack a hearty lunch and your snorkel gear in our kayaks and paddle with motor support to this exciting location. This dive spot is known for its profusion of fish and towering coral formations. Snorkeling at the ‘Aquarium’ is usually one of the favorite activities among our guests. You’ll return home, stopping at the Half Moon Wall for a spectacular drift snorkel over the undersea cliff of the atoll. As you float (or drift) along the sea surface using your snorkel gear, you’ll have an opportunity to view the amazing underworld that lies beneath.

Day 6:

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Half Moon Caye Basecamp

Today you’ll paddle along the protected waters of the Southern Reef towards Long Caye. At this location, you’ll have a chance to snorkel some of the atoll’s best patch reefs. After a full day of exploring, you’ll return just in time for a wonderful seafood dinner prepared especially for you by our cooks.

Day 7:

Meals: Breakfast and Lunch

Accommodation: Biltmore Plaza Hotel

For your last morning at Lighthouse Reef Atoll, the choice is yours. Snorkel your favorite patch reefs, walk the island trails, swing in a hammock or beachcomb along the immaculate island beaches. After lunch a motor charter arrives, and you’ll begin to prepare for your trip back to the mainland. This return journey takes you through Turneffe atoll across the Great Barrier Reef, and you’ll arrive at the Belize Biltmore Hotel usually by late afternoon. You can enjoy a fresh shower and swim in the hotel’s pool. Your final evening is reserved for relaxing at the hotel or exploring the local area.

Dates & Pricing

Price From

$ 1,375

Price Per Day:

$ 196 per person

 
  • Please note the price of the trip for double standard (per person on double occupancy) starts from CAD $1,839 and the tax = CAD $350. Prices on price table could slightly differ due to fluctuation in the currency rate.

Details

Trip Includes

  • Comprehensive pre-trip information package
  • All meals, accommodation, and transfers described in the itinerary
  • Professional Guiding Services
  • Unlimited use of our Equipment and facilities
  • Accommodation the day before the trip ('Day 0')
  • Government Fees & Taxes

Trip Excludes

  • Post-trip transfer to Belize
  • Gratuities
  • Fishing Licenses
  • Scuba Diving
  • International Flights and Airport Departure Tax
  • Extra costs due to late Arrivals, lost baggage and other circumstances beyond our control

Optional Activities

This trip combines well with the  Rainforest Canopy Extension and the Maya World Extension.

Meals Included:

7 Breakfasts, 7 Lunches and 6 Dinners

Flights & Transport

Only ground transport

Group Size:

Standard Group

Maximum Number of People in Group: 25

6-25 Limited

Accomodations

  • Bird's Eye View Lodge
  • Half Moon Caye Basecamp and Belize Biltmore Plaza

Start City

Belize City

End City

Belize City

Cancellation Policy:

Of course we regret any cancellations and our cancellation policy is as flexible and understanding as possible.  Many of our trip costs are incurred well in advance of trip departures and other travelers may have been turned away because the trip is full. All cancellations must be received at our office in writing and refunds will be issued according to the following schedule:

Regular Season Departures: (Nov 1 to Dec 14 & Jan 2 to May 31 each year)

60 days + prior to departure will be deposit retained as an administration fee.

41-60 days prior to departure is 70% refund

21-40 days prior to departure is 35% refund

0-20 days prior to departure will be the full amount is retained

Trip ID#: LigReeIsl

 

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