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“Talented and patient -- the perfect combination!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Ray McDonald's Warasa Garifuna Drum School

Ray McDonald's Warasa Garifuna Drum School
New Road, Punta Gorda, Belize
+501 632-7701
Website
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$12*
and up
Ranked #3 of 14 things to do in Punta Gorda
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Attraction details
Owner description: 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.
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Activities for young children, Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children
Arlington, Virginia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Talented and patient -- the perfect combination!”
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 laid back -- I haven't laughed that hard in a long time. Ray friendly nature puts you at ease -- so I was comfortable diving in even though I knew I wasn't any good! The school is also beautiful -- with butterflies and hummingbirds buzzing around as you play, or just relax in the hammocks. I would definitely recommend that anyone visiting PG check out Ray's lessons. You won't be disappointed!

Visited December 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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41 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Ontario
Level Contributor
16 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Take the time to visit Ray”
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 been around for your weekly demonstration at Hickatee.

Visited December 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Purmerend, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“We had a privat concert at the Lazy Fish”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2014

At Garifuna day, we had a dinner at the Lazy Fish. Ray McDonald was there with a few students. It was a very nice concert, we had lots of fun.
Thank you for the experience.

Visited November 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ruthalicesherratt, Owner at Ray McDonald's Warasa Garifuna Drum School, responded to this review, January 9, 2014
Thanks so much for your review and we're so glad you enjoyed your meal and the little drumming at Da Lazy Fish! The group of teenagers that Ray played with that day weren't even his students - he just loves helping anyone out whenever he thinks they need an extra drummer, singer or dancer, and since Tiffany is also one of our good friends he decided to jump in for a couple of songs! We really hope you make it back some day and get to visit us or see our professional group performing :-).
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Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Wonderful experiencw”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2013

My family-myself, husband and our 5 and 7 year old boys-had a wonderful drumming lesson with Ray. He was patient and kind, and the rhythms of the Garifuna people are wonderful.

Visited August 2013
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Sierra Vista, Arizona
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“A rewarding experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2013

A wonderful family operation whose heart is in preserving music, songs, and instrument-making of the Garifuna culture. My granddaughter and I opted to attend the drum lesson & performance one week and the drum-making the following week. We were richly rewarded by being able to participate in every instance. The family is warm and welcoming. Our visits were a highlight during our time in Punta Gorda.

Visited June 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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