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Ray McDonald's Warasa Garifuna Drum School

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Address: Corner West Street & Cemetery Lane, Punta Gorda, Belize
Phone Number: +501 632 7701
Website
Today
9:00 am - 6:00 pm
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
Description: The hands-on way to learn about Garifuna drumming and culture.Learn about...
The hands-on way to learn about Garifuna drumming and culture.Learn about the rich history and culture of the Garifuna while learning the different traditional drumbeats that influence music throughout Belize and Central America. Located in the peaceful coastal town of Punta Gorda, Belize, Warasa and its founder, local drummer Ronald Raymond McDonald, provide lessons to suit everyone. Individual lessons or half-day packages on drumming, drum-making, dancing and group performances are also available, as well as performances by Warasa Garifuna drum group. Warasa is now featured in the 2011 editions of Lonely Planet Belize and Moon Belize guidebooks.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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A must do when in Punta Gorda

Ray is incredibly passionate about preserving the Garifuna culture, and it comes through in his teaching. I was not an experienced drummer, but was able to learn a number of... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed February 7, 2015
Laurie F
,
Vancouver, Canada
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33 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Vancouver, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2015

Ray is incredibly passionate about preserving the Garifuna culture, and it comes through in his teaching. I was not an experienced drummer, but was able to learn a number of Garifuna drum beats well enough to play along with his rhythms. I had such a good time I went back for more!

Was this review helpful? Yes
Woodstock, Georgia
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2015

We visited Warasa Garifuna Drum School in December for a fun morning of drumming, culture, dancing and drum making lessons. Ray and his father are not only great teachers, but great musicians as well. The drum lessons are of course the highlight and worth it in and of themselves, but don't miss a chance to learn about the culture and... More 

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Denver, Colorado
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
8 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 26, 2015

Anyone looking to have a great night of music and delicious food should go to the Warasa Drum School. Ray and his family are fantastic musicians and great teachers, and even the non-muscially inclined folks in our group had a blast! Plus, the typical Garifuna dinner they made for us was delicious. A great experience!

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Toronto, Canada
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2014

We visited this school during a city tour of Punta Gorda with one of the guides from the Belcampo Lodge. Both Ray and his wife were very gracious and took the time to explain Garifuna culture and the drum making process to us. Ray is making it his personal mission to keep the Garifuna culture alive through his drum school.... More 

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Bloomington, Illinois
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
7 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2014

Ray McDonald and his family provided a very informative and fun presentation on the Garifuna culture. He was extremely knowledgeable. The drumming was excellent and the food was outstanding! It was a very fun night!

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Palo Alto, California
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2014

We went here for a dinner and a musical presentation. The food was excellent and totally different, all from Belize traditions and cooked in the traditional way. It was creative and interesting music and fun to dance to and to talk to the musicians who have been playing for many years. A very cultural and interesting night out for sure.

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Manitoba, Canada
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2014

Loved Ray's personal instruction and understanding of the culture and history of Garifuna drumming. He is also a very good drummer. The new drumming workshop offered open space, shelter and shade. This is a family-based cultural experience, and they are very personable.

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Irvine, California
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2014

The Warasa Garifuna Drum School was a highlight to my visit to PG - I learned so much and had a great time!! Thank you!!

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Arlington, Virginia
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2014

I booked lesson with Ray on the spur of the moment based on a local recommendation and was delighted that he was able to fit it in. Despite the fact that I have no rhythm, I thoroughly enjoyed the lessons, and but mostly just liked listening to Ray play (man, he's talented). While instructive, the lesson was also fun and... More 

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Ontario
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
4 attraction reviews
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2014

We have no drumming experience, but had done a little reading about the Garifuna and heard some of their music at Hickatee Cottages. Ray and his father were wonderful, patient teachers and it was a very interesting visit. We ran into Ray a few days later and he remembered us warmly. Thanks for sharing your culture with us. Wish we'd... More 

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