We are seasoned global travelers and highly recommend visiting Belize and staying at the Coco Beach Resort. We originally planned to stay at the Belizean Shores Resort (next door, same management company) and were extremely disappointed to learn that the pool would be out of service during our stay. Thanks to Amy at Delta vacations for helping us to upgrade our accommodation to the nearby Coco Beach Resort (at no charge - can you believe that?!?). What we liked about the Coco Beach Resort is that it catered equally to young couples, families, singles, and seasoned travelers.
It's a long day of travel to Belize, so we recommend taking the short flight from Belize City to San Pedro. Maya Air gives great service - the planes are small with a single engine turbo prop so sit in front behind the pilot for a great view! We were greeted in San Pedro, taken by taxi (1.5 blocks) to the water taxi, and then accompanied to the resort. The resort staff welcome you at the dock with cool, refreshing towels and a tasty rum cocktail during check-in. Nick was especially cordial and helpful during our stay, and his attention was representative of everyone at the resort (bartenders, pool staff, housekeeping, grounds crew).
One of the best room locations in the resort, we stayed in 6C which was a 2 bedroom villa on the third floor with a full kitchen, open shower bathroom, and living room. The BEST feature was the open veranda which had a view of the pool area and panoramic views of the resort with the ocean in the distance. Thank you, Nick! On the third floor veranda, we enjoyed home made breakfasts in the early morning and dinner by candlelight with cooling breezes. We brought insect repellant but with the evening breeze from the veranda, we had no problems with mosquitoes whatsoever. The housekeeping staff is excellent and we would be remiss to not acknowledge how well they maintained our villa and made our experience a positive one.
Other reviewers from tripadvisor noted that food costs are higher in Belize. We therefore chose to preorders groceries online from matagrande grocery and were welcomed upon checkin with all of the basic groceries that we ordered already stocked in our kitchen. Breakfast and dinner fare, locally made chips and salsa, Belizean beer, the freshest local fruit, cheese, bread, local fish, fresh brown eggs, a bit of prosciutto, wine and fruit juice, etc. We brought a few basics from home (olive oil, spices, etc) and had gourmet meals every day. The resort did not yet have a functioning restaursnt but had an outdoor Sunday BBQ with excellent food. Take the water taxi into San Pedro and try the local restaurants (eat there or order food for take out). The local merchants and restaurant staff are very friendly and service oriented. We always felt safe and asked questions about the local food. There are three small main streets (front, middle, back) in San Pedro. Some people rent golf carts for use in town - use your legs because the streets are short and golf carts are a waste of money. Walk along the streets and visit the local shops or street vendors. Try the papusas and burritos at Waraguma (it looks a bit rustic but we are foodies and found the food to be sublime) or a local beer at a seaside bar like Rubie's or the Holiday Hotel while watching the children swim in the ocean - it was all tasty and a great experience. Other resort guests commented positively about Elvi's Kitchen and El Fogo. I disagree with other reviewers and would not recommend Capricorn's food (15 minute walk from the Coco). The Coco Beach staff or Tuff E Nuff folks will give you good recommendations where to go to eat.
There is a LOT to do in Belize. The people are very proud of their young country and will go out of their way to educate you on their history and best ways to enjoy the country's resources. Go into town each day and appreciate the culture and people - purchase the multiday water taxi pass($30). We used Tuff E Nuff Island Tours because of convenience and the staff give excellent service. Rico, Ariel, Rick, etc etc, were ALL highly customer focused and gave excellent service. We took one day to travel with Tuff E Nuff into Belize to tour the Mayan ruins (morning) and cave tubing (afternoon), and a second day to go snorkeling in the marine reserve. Would we do these trips again? Absolutely! Remember to tip your tour guide - they work hard to ensure you have a great stay.
The Mayan ruins are close to the Guatemala border - it is a long drive from Belize City and it is very hot; take a hat, wear good walking shoes for the pyramid climb and use sunscreen. The Tuff E Nuff staff took care of everything, and even had a cooler with ice, soda, water and beer (yes!) in the air conditioned van. Refreshing! Our guide was energetic and highly educated on the country, its history and culture, interpretations of the carvings on the pyramidal ruins, and he even pointed out local plants and animals along the way. The howler monkeys were in the forest making a lot of noise, so we took a few extra minutes to locate and quietly observe them as they rested in the trees. We were nearly the only tourists at the ruins - what a treat! We stopped at a local restaurant for lunch (breakfast and lunch were included in the tour) and enjoyed a satisfying and tasty plate of rice, beans, chicken, potato salad, and fried plantains. It was a long trip back to the caves and we now realize that there couldn't have been a better way to finish the daylong trip - floating by innertubes into the cool caves, appreciating its formation, and tasting the freshest, sweetest water that has been filtered through limestone for thousands of years was amazing. (Yes, we drank 5000 year old dinosaur urine! Ha!). Again, our Tuff E Nuff guide and driver were an excellent hosts and were both informative, careful about our safety and really fun. It's a long walk on a river rock pathway to the caves while carrying your inner tube and miner's helmet, so bring water shoes or water sandals and a beach towel. They have restrooms available to change into and out of your swimwear.
The snorkeling trip to the marine reserve was the BEST, and we are glad we saved that trip for the end of our holiday. Tuff E Nuff was our guide and the staff were simply excellent. Some folks went scuba diving and some did snorkeling. We've been to the Great Barrier Reef and snorkeling in the Belizean marine reserve is just as beautiful. Our snorkeling guides pointed out different types of fish, coral and other sea life. Forget about what you've previously experienced at your city's aquarium and thoughts of Finding Nemo. The Belizean reef was absolutely pristine with new coral growing everywhere (have you ever seen electric blue coral or brain coral the size of a nuclear watermelon?). The waters were teeming with HUGE schools of the most colorful fish (in the deeper part of the trench portion of the reserve, the groupers were larger than me!). We snorkeled with and among the fish - swimming in technicolor! The second part of the trip for the snorkeled was a trip to the shark and ray alley. Upon arrival, the staff added chum to the water and we were suddenly surrounded by huge numbers of manta rays and nurse sharks of all sizes. THEN we jumped into the water with the staff and swam with the rays and sharks. The staff knew how to handle the animals and ensured our safety while we touched the thick skin of a shark fin and appreciated the contrast of its soft underbelly. Surely, these will be some of the best pictures of our trip.
If you can't afford the tours, no problem. The Coco Beach Resort offers complimentary 2-seater sea kayaks that guests can use to paddle out to the reef, anchor to the buoys, and snorkel to your heart's content. The reefs located to the north or south of the buoys are in great condition and teeming with beautiful coral and fish (and we even saw a nurse shark). We brought cooked spaghetti noodles from a dinner that we made in our villa and enjoyed watching the small clouds of fish swarm around the little bits of spaghetti noodles that rained down from above. The reefs were so fun that we snorkeled for several hours every single day, so bring good sunscreen, water, and consider a UV guard shirt/UV swim shorts to prevent sunburn on your backside. We finished every kayak trip with a relaxing swim in the gorgeous resort pool. The pool was always clean and you could always count on having a bar staff member stop by to check on your drinks. We included Belizean rum ( a lot of it!), fresh fruit, and fruit juices in our online grocery order from matagrande, and used the blender in our kitchen to produce the best frozen rum cocktails for poolside or post dinner relaxation on our magnificent veranda with the panoramic view.
Time, money and an honest opinion are precious these days - this is why I took the time to share details of our experience and opinions of what to do/not do in Tripadvisor. If this review was helpful, let me know so that I would be motivated to write again. Would we visit the Coco Beach Resort again? It's romantic, it's decadent, it's incredibly affordable in the off season, it's suitable for people at all stages of life, and it has well-trained and service-oriented staff. You better Belize it!
- Also Known As:
- Coco Beach Hotel San Pedro
- Coco Beach Hotel
- Coco Beach San Pedro
- Coco Beach Resort Belize/San Pedro
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The fabulous Coco Beach Resort is located on the island of Ambergris Caye in Belize. Our beachfront resort is just 3.5 miles north of San Pedro Town. The resort provides complimentary water taxi shuttle from San Pedro airport to the property. A short boat ride, bicycle ride or golf cart ride back to town will get you to the shops and restaurants located in the town center. A Belize vacation in paradise is the ideal therapy for those who just want to get away from it all! The weather in Belize is ideal. Resort guests can expect a subtropical climate, Palm trees, Coconuts, Hammocks and the most incredible swimming pool on the island. Coco Beach offers luxurious accommodations in a quaint environment. Coco Beach offers numerous activities including diving, fishing, day tours, volleyball, sailing, kayaking and much more! Plus there is an outside Coco Cafe Providing fresh pastries goodies and specialty coffee as well as quick lunch options. The Coco Cabana Pool Bar features a swim up bar, snacks and a selection of specialty drinks. Coco Beach Resort is the right choice for your Barefoot Vacation in Belize. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Orbitz, Booking.com, Hotels.com, Expedia, Caribbean Online Mgt Corp., Amex, Travelocity, Priceline, BookIt.com, Venere, Agoda, Fareportal and Otel so you can book your Coco Beach Resort reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.