Belize is a small country in Central America, which is world famous for its beautiful tropical islands, surrounded by the waters of the Caribbean Sea. Some of them are used to meet the tourists and other are on the market for real estates. From Belize starts the biggest coral reef in the Western Hemisphere. Belize is an independent state in the composition of the Commonwealth. The country is independent from 1981. Located in the southern Yucatan Peninsula, Belize is situated in lands that were once the home of the Mayas.
Geographical location and territory. Belize is located in Central America. To the east it has an outlet to the Caribbean Sea.
On the north it bordered by Mexico, to the west and south it bordered with Guatemala.
The country is located between 15 and 18° north latitude and between 87 and 89° west longitude (including adjacent islands). The territory of the country amounts to 22,965 square kilometers.
Climate. Belize falls in the tropical climate zone. The temperatures are high throughout the year – ranging from 27°C in January to 31°C in the period from April to October.
The night temperatures are lowest in January – about 19°C and in summer are about 24°C. There are two seasons – dry and rainy. During the dry season the rainfall ranged from poor to moderate.
It lasts from January to May. From June to December is the rainy season. Most significant are the precipitation in October – over 300 mm!
As a comparison, in Europe there are countries which receive all year not more than 400 – 500 mm, which is not much more in comparison with the precipitation in Belize for only one month!
During the rainy season may rains every day, and the rainfalls are usually very intense.
Nature. The nature of Belize is a wild and preserved. Most of the country is covered with dense tropical forests that are habitat for many rare and endangered species.
Particularly interesting are the Jaguars, which sometimes occur in these places. Here can be seen toucan – beautiful bird with black feathers and brightly coloured beaks (red, yellow, orange).
It also inhabit the local forests. Furthermore, here live various monkeys, birds, snakes (many of which are extremely poisonous) and many others. The terrain is predominantly flat or hilly.
The mountains in the country are rare and are with negligible height. In the southern parts there are low mountains, called Maya. Here stands the highest point of the country – Victoria Peak, 1124 m altitude.
The coastline of the country is indented into many smaller bays and peninsulas. In many places there are beautiful sandy beaches. The sand is bright and with very high quality. The coral reefs protect the coasts from the large waves.
Population and settlements. Belize is a sparsely populated country. Here live not more than 310,000 inhabitants. Overall the population lives in small villages and towns. The largest city is Belize City.
It is home to approximately 50,000 residents. Around 13,000 people is the population of the second largest city – the capital Belmopan.
The population of Belize speak two languages – English and Spanish. Although English is the official, Spanish is not less widespread.
1. Belmopan is the capital of Belize and the second largest city in the country. It has a population of around 13,000 inhabitants. The city is located in central parts of the country.
Although it is the capital, the city looks unusually small, quiet and peaceful. It is surrounded by dense tropical forests that are alternated with farmlands, where are grown bananas and sugar cane.
2. Belize City is the largest and most dynamic city in the country and yet has a population of only 50,000 inhabitants. This is a reference center for numerous tropical islands around the coast.
The town is situated on a small peninsula. While the cities in the country are very small and because of this reason is very difficult to impress the western tourists, who are accustomed to much more dynamic and cosmopolitan atmosphere with much more landmarks.
But Belize has its own advantages. One of them is the pure nature and the closeness of the nature in every part of the country.
3. Punta Gorda is a town of about 6,000 people. Situated in the southern parts of the country on the coast of the Caribbean Sea.
Although it is situated on the coast, Punta Gorda has no beaches, but only stones which to protect the shore from erosion and after them directly begins the coastal boulevard.
Economy. Belize is a typical part of the Caribbean region and as such some of the most important economic sectors are the tourism and agriculture.
Most important for the tourism industry are the numerous and exceptionally beautiful tropical islands off the coast of the country.
The tourists from all around the world come here all year around to bathe in the azure waters of the Caribbean Sea and to rebuild their forces amidst the serenity and beauty of the local nature.
Predominate the small hotels, villas and bungalows on the beach. The country has a growing economy and generally low standard of living.
The revenues from tourism are distributed very unevenly among the population as the largest part goes to the owners and management personnel of the hotels, and the other very small part remains in the staff.
The social contrasts, however, remain far from the luxury and opulence of the paradise islands. There, everything looks perfect. The infrastructure is good, almost every villa and hotel have a swimming pool and everything is just in few steps from the beach.
The poverty can be seen much more clearly on the continent in cities such as the biggest city – Belize City, where luxury and poverty come into contact.
The agriculture is the main source of income for most of the population. The country produces mainly bananas and sugar cane.
Besides tourism and agriculture, part of the revenues come from mining and oil exports. The official currency of the country is Belizean dollar.
The best time to visit Belize is the period from the end of December to early June. In this part of the year the most days are dry and sunny and the temperatures are lowest and therefore much most pleasant – about 27°C.