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Belize
Ellen & Jim's Honeymoon, November 2008

Featuring the Blue Marlin Lodge at Southwater Caye,
14 miles off the shore of Dangriga.

Southwater Caye is a beautiful 15-acre island located on the Belize Barrier Reef, a section of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, which is the 2nd largest reef to the Australian Great Barrier Reef.

Click on the links below for 5 more pages loaded with images!

Blue Marlin Lodge is on the "neck" of the island with the red roofs (right).
Click image below to enlarge Southwater Caye, eastward bound

Mainland

Caye Candids

Underwater

Click image for Jim's generalized geological cross section.

Wildlife

Funrise, Funset

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Our Review
Four months into our marriage I was ready for a honeymoon on the beach. I had been to Puerto Vallarta and my husband had been to Cancun, and we both had been to Hawaii. So we had a decision to make since Tahiti was not an option for us until very far in the future, if ever. Then came my husband's Scientific American magazine with a full-page ad of Belize. My husband was thrilled to see the barrier reef for some fabulous snorkeling, along with solving his geology curiosity. I went to the travelbelize website and we researched many places and found the Blue Marlin to be our choice. By far, it was way beyond our expectations! Julissa, the owner's daughter, was our U.S. contact who provided us with all the answers to our questions. She coordinated our flight from Belize Int'l airport to Dangriga (about 20 minutes), and the boat ride to Southwater Caye (about 30 minutes). From our Vegas-Houston flight we were greeted at Belize Int'l by one of Blue Marlin's reps, a very helpful and pleasant chap, who checked our bags for us at Maya Air, and the customs department also went very quickly. The flight was short but scenic. Upon arrival in Dangriga we were greeted by Richard who drove us to the dock where the boat awaited us. Along the way he stopped for bottled water and some good local beer to quench our thirst for the short drive and the boat ride to the island :) Everyone was so welcoming and fun! Steven the lobster diver was very informative to any questions on our short cruise to the island.

When we got to the island we were welcomed by our very own personal crew because at this time we had been the only guests. This was at the end of the hurricane season, and we had the very best of weather early November. Although we were exhausted from traveling so long, Kay the manager seated us for a late lunch/early dinner of freshly caught red snapper (right from the pier) that was to die for, prepared by Sam the chef. And Ionie the cook makes the best coconut bread ever! Every meal (inclusive, 3 times a day plus snacks) was just as delicious as the rest. (Oh no, not lobster again :)) And Gloria our housekeeper, along with Kay, made sure our cottage remained clean daily and the fridge stocked with water, fresh juice and the local Belikin and Lighthouse beer. Kay even makes an "alka seltzer" from scratch :)

Two mornings we didn't make it to breakfast so Kay brought it to our cottage...yes, breakfast in bed of your choice! Plan to gain a couple pounds! Our cottage was right on the beach with a perfect view of the sunrise and the waves breaking on the barrier reef that we could see out our window from our bed! Then after breakfast and/or after lunch we were cruised to the greatest snorkeling areas by our personal guide, Ernie. He was the best! He took us to all his private hidden places that were spectacular! I've snorkeled before but this place was the best--a whole new world with phenomenal coral and sea life. One day Ernie even took us island hopping to see all the nearby cayes and their activities. Since I was trying out a new underwater camera I wanted to be sure my pics were backed up and Rosella the owner let me keep a backup stored on her computer for safe keeping.

Before checking out we chose to not take our Belize flight from Dangriga to the Int'l airport and asked to have Ernie give us a personal tour through Belize. With pleasure, he drove us to some tourist attractions like St. Herman's Blue Hole with the underwater cave while explaining history of the country along the way. It was well worth the small extra fee! It made our last day very memorable. We plan to return again next year, and many more after! This was definitely a honeymoon to remember! Our only advice is to be sure to have insect repellant for the sand flies. Blue Marlin sprays their beach area but I can't be sure of the rest of the caye. We did wander around the island each day or evening to explore, and managed to get a few itches somewhere along the way. All in all, my geeky husband and myself were excited that it was not only a fabulous honeymoon vacation, but an interesting eco tour also. Thanks Blue Marlin Lodge!

~Ellen & Jim

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