We enjoyed a full-on beach bonanza for our last full day in Belize today. In the morning, we headed over to Ranguana Caye, a private island decked out in palm trees, frigatebirds, and hammocks. We spent our time kayaking, standup paddleboarding, and snorkeling around this small island. Some folks just kicked off their shoes and relaxed on this little slice of paradise. In the afternoon, we repositioned to Silk Caye. Local guides took us out in boats to see the fishing fleet of Belize. Workers in the fleet live on small sailboats for weeks, and they free dive for lobster, conch, and other local seafood. We jumped into the water and were treated to sightings of eagle rays, nurse sharks, and turtles! Afterwards, we all enjoyed one last cocktail on the beach and headed back to our shipboard home for the evening. Another day in paradise here in Belize.
National Geographic Sea Lion
Shortly after National Geographic Sea Lion dropped her anchor, we awoke to very calm seas with overcast skies and a light southwest wind coming off the land. Our guests prepared for early morning adventures and headed out in Zodiacs and local skiffs to explore the meandering lower reaches of Monkey River, the largest estuary of southern Belize. Great blue herons and great egrets stood knee deep on the sandbars near the shore while yellow-crowned night herons and black vultures hunkered down in the drizzle that accompanied us. Guides and guests gazed up at the treetops, hoping to see green iguanas with the males in their bright orange breeding colors and perhaps a troop of Yucatan black howler monkeys. We walked the trails through the gallery forest a few miles upstream. Our luck was shining brightly, and several monkeys were sighted high above. We returned to the ship to savor the delicious brunch prepared by the amazing hotel department. Ranguana Caye was our base for the snorkeling and island activities this afternoon. Guests had a wonderful experience swimming among the bright and beautiful fish and the other tiny critters that live in the hard and soft corals of the fringing reefs. Parrotfish, angelfish, butterflyfish, and sergeant majors were some of the familiar friends seen. As the trip wound down to the final stages, contact information was exchanged among new friends, experiences were shared, and future trips were discussed. Guests bid farewell to the crew and staff. Glasses were raised, and a guest slide show put smiles on our faces.