Belize Jungle and River Safaris

Best Belize Jungle and River Safaris

Before founding Chaa Creek with wife Lucy, Mick Fleming lived in Africa, and you’ll see that reflected in the great thatched roof of the Mariposa Restaurant, a certain big bracelet no longer capable of leaving his wrist, and his love of that quintessential African pastime…

Safaris.

And famous for never doing things by half, the Flemings created two safaris – the Jungle Safari that takes guests on an all-terrain vehicle excursion through the various ecosystems surrounding Chaa Creek, and a River Safari aboard the Miss Macal.

The 400-acre private nature reserve surrounding Chaa Creek just begs for exploration; on horseback, morning and evening guided nature walks, or simply strolling along the well-maintained trails. And for a more comprehensive look, there’s travelling along on an all-terrain vehicle through broadleaf forests, cohune palm ridges and other rainforest habitats with a knowledgeable guide pointing out various points of interest.

There’s no better way to cover so much ground, and opportunities to observe jungle flora and wildlife, including the occasional tapir, abound. Definitely bring your camera!

Africa comes to mind again, this time in the form of the African Queen, when we think of the Macal River Safari aboard the Miss Macal, a traditional Belizean Johnboat whose stability and shallow draft made it the boat for Belizean river exploration for generations.

Today, our guides skipper the Miss Macal up and down her namesake river to give passengers a comprehensive look into Belize’s vibrant riverine habitat. Sit back and relax with a cool drink and camera at the ready as you pass riverbanks teeming with birds and huge iguanas sunning themselves on tree branches.

Okay – to be honest, the Miss Macal may not look much like the battered vessel Audrey Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart floated down the Ulanga River on in the African Queen, but then, it’s much more reliable.

Ladies – a broad brimmed hat and scarf will put you in the African Queen mood, and gentlemen, feel free to grow a stubble and forgo bathing for a few days… but you’ll have to bring your own gin.

Whichever safari you choose – and we recommend both – you can be assured of an eye opening, off the beaten track excursion through the timeless beauty of Belize’s unique rainforest and river ecosystems.

And afterwards, recounting your adventures at the Jungle Lounge, you may just find yourselves channelling Hemingway, Hepburn and Bogart…safaris have that effect on people.

RTV & Miss Macal River Tour Details

Departures

Daily tours leave at 7:30 am and 1:30pm

Habitat

Sub tropical broadleaf forests and open meadows

Terrain

Moderately rolling forest, covered foothills with some steep inclines

Distance

4 to 5 miles

Duration

2 hours

Fitness

Basic

What to bring along

Hat, sunscreen, water, insect repellant and camera

Dress

Short or long pants and comfortable footwear -- sleeve lengths are optional

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