May 7th, 2015
What to Pack for Belize: The 5-Step Solution
Whether you’re lounging on the country's white sand beaches, hiking through its tropical rain forest, scuba diving at the Blue Hole, seeking out Mayan ruins, or all of the above, find out what to pack for this Central American destination.
White sand beaches? It’s got 'em. Breathtaking Mayan ruins? Yeah, they’re there, too. A plethora of outdoor activities, including scuba diving at the longest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere? Yup. A dive in the famous Blue Hole is just another one of the many reasons that you’re eyeing Central America’s Belize as the spot for your next travel adventure!
Whether you’re planning for fun in the sun during Belize’s dry season (December through May) or a wet rainforest adventure in the rainy season (June through November), figuring out what to put in your suitcase may feel overwhelming. So check out these five essential packing tips.
Step 1. Increase Pocket and Pouch Awareness
It’s easy to forget all of your cares when vacationing in beautiful Belize. Despite the country's picturesque, lush surroundings and friendly locals, travelers need to be wary of crime in Belize. Though the high rate of violent crime is generally related to local gang activity in Belize City, pickpocketing and other crimes target unsuspecting tourists. Be “pocket and pouch aware” when packing for Belize by leaving valuable items (like high-end jewelry or watches) at home, bringing smart storage for cash and credit cards, and invest in a TSA-approved luggage lock. Protect your most valuable documents and credit cards in a RFID money belt or neck wallet that sits underneath your clothes and out of sight.
Pocket and Pouch Awareness Tip: Did you know there are chips inside most Passports and credit cards, which contain personal identification information? Unfortunately, thieves can easily purchase RFID readers to intercept your personal information. Eagle Creek’s RFID Blockers help to block Readers and keep your personal information safe.
Step 2. Climate Control
Though Belize is a small country, it packs a great deal of climate variety. And because Belize is a small country, you may experience all of those climates during one trip! The coastal beaches are hot (especially during the dry months of December through May), whereas the rainforest is, well, rainy (especially during the rainy season of June through November). In the dry season, prepare for the sun with a wide-brimmed hat, sun screen, light layers and, of course, sunglasses! During the rainy season—and for all rain forest adventures—make mosquito control a priority with tall socks, light, long-sleeved shirts, and light, long pants. Pack quick-drying layers in both climates, which will help combat both precipitation and sweat, and pack a travel rain shell to stay as dry as possible.
Climate Control Tip: Keep your clean clothes separated from your dirty wet clothes with a Pack-It™ Clean Dirty Cube. The cube’s LinkSeal™ mesh divider will keep yesterday’s rain- and sweat-soaked clothing from mingling with tomorrow’s fresh outfit.
Step 3. Personal Travel Pharmacy
Unless you want your Belizean souvenirs to be a sunburn, bug bites, motion sickness, and dehydration, get your travel pharmacy ready! Start with a base of your personal prescriptions and commonly used over the counter drugs (like decongestants or allergy medications). Bring your highest SPF for the tropical sun, insect repellant to ward off mosquitoes, and After Bite and aloe for times when your mosquito protection falls short. Pack motion sickness pills for the bumpy roads and choppy boat rides, antacids for any dicey meals, and perhaps some ibuprofen for the aftermath of delicious rum drinks. Though it's not necessary for all parts of Belize, consult with your doctor about malaria prevention prior to your trip, and bring any recommended prescriptions.
Travel Pharmacy Tip: Bring TSA-approved amounts of your favorite sunscreens and bug sprays in durable silicone bottles in a clear 3-1-1 carry-on pouch.
Step 4. Prepare for Outdoor Fun
Whether you're interested in prime scuba diving, hiking in a rain forest, fishing, or zip-lining over the tree tops, Belize boasts excellent outdoor activity options. Pack a SPF- protectant water shirt for snorkeling in Caye Caulker, and don’t forget your scuba diving certification card for a dive in the famous Blue Hole. Hiking boots (and tall socks!) are a must for rainforest treks in the Sibun National Forest Reserve, and binoculars will make bird watching at Crooked Tree a memorable experience.
Prepare for Adventure Tip: Leave your suitcase at your hotel and use a packable daypack for excursions during your trip.
Step 5. Document Like a Pro
Though you can’t bring beautiful Belize home with you, you can capture your memories to relive the trip (and, of course, earn some much-deserved social media cred). Prep your phone for filming waterfall jumps with a waterproof case, such as the LifeProof Case. Pack a GoPro or other compact HD video recorder to document hikes, caving, or the occasional zip-line run. For longer trips, make room for more pictures by periodically uploading photos to a hard drive. Pack extra batteries when camping or traveling to remote locations that will have fewer opportunities for charging. As tempting as it may be, though: Leave the Selfie stick at home, and ask a fellow traveler to snap your photo in front of Mayan ruins.
Document Like a Pro Tip: Keep your cameras and electronic accessories organized in an eTools Organizer.
Now that you know what you’re bringing, it’s time to find the perfect pack. Check out Eagle Creek’s Outfit Me Tool for travel pack recommendations that match your personal travel style.
Caila Ball-Dionne is a freelance writer and full-time travel enthusiast. You can find more of her writing at CailaBall.com
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