Today we began our first explorations of Belize, a country known for its protected ecosystems, wildlife, and vibrant cultures. After a rocky start to the morning, we explored one of the offshore atoll systems known as Lighthouse Reef. Guests spent the day admiring the colony of red-footed boobies and snorkeling along the edge of the coral reef and sea grass ecosystems. Some highlights included stingrays, barracuda, anemones, parrotfish, and much more.
National Geographic Sea Lion
Today was our last full day of activities before saying adios! We spent the day visiting a Maya site, and we immersed ourselves in culture while listening and dancing to the music of the Garifuna Collective at night. First up in the morning was an hour and a half drive from Big Creek to Mayflower Bocawina National Park. We split into groups according to people’s preferences, and the three groups set off with their respective guides. The emphasis in one group was birding, and guests saw several of the over 600 species of birds found in Belize. The other groups took different trails, and they learned about the medicinal uses of plants, what roots and fruits are edible, and, of course, what to avoid! Black poisonwood and the spiny pokonobwai palm are on the list of plants to avoid. Some guests got lucky and spotted howler monkeys frolicking in the canopy! After hiking, everyone was treated to a delicious Belizean lunch in Maya Center Village accompanied by Maya marimba music and dance. Later in the evening, guests moved from the ship to The Placencia Yacht Club for a show by the world famous punta rock band, The Garifuna Collective. They put on a dock-shaking performance that motivated everyone to leave their seats and move to the groove of this homegrown genre of music! It was the icing on the cake of an amazing day. Thus ended the first voyage of 2023 for National Geographic Sea Lion .