Toledo Ecotourism Association Tours

Toledo Ecotourism Association Tours

Toledo Ecotourism Association Tours
5
About
The Toledo Ecotourism Association is one of the first and most successful Community-Based Ecotourism operators in the region. They propose to discover, taste and live the mayan culture through many typical activities as jungle and farm tour, also craft, cooking, dancing and music lessons, in different Mayan Villages close to Punta Gorda.
Punta Gorda, Belize

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Toledo Ecotourism Association Tours
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Travelers talk about
(5 reviews)
(8 reviews)
(2 reviews)

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

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5.0
5.0 of 5 bubbles17 reviews
Excellent
17
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bel1979
England458 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Solo
I stayed for one night with the Chun family in San Antonio and it was the highlight of my trip to Belize. I did the overnight package (see their website for details) and it included three wonderful meals made by Jenny Chun, and multiple activities. I went on a jungle tour with Reyes Chun, where I learnt about the cocoa bean production and the various fruits and vegetables and medicinal plants the family uses. Jenny showed me how they use the fermented and dried cocoa bean to make a traditional Mayan chocolate drink. I helped with dinner and with making tortillas. We also did a craft lesson, using the jippi japa from their land. You can also buy some lovely items that Jenny and her daughter make (but no pressure). The whole family was so welcoming and I felt very comfortable during my entire stay. The accommodation is adjacent to the family home, and while simple, it was clean and pleasant. Reyes was easy to contact via WhatsApp for any information and can also advise on transport. It’s very easy to get to the village with the bus from Punta Gorda. Likewise, you can easily get to PG with the James Bus from other parts of Belize - the buses run on schedule. I highly recommend incorporating a stay in one of the TEA villages as part of your trip to Belize - it will be one of the most genuine and least touristy things you will do. This is a wonderful programme run by wonderful people - it deserves your support. Go and book your stay today!
Written February 3, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Andrew M
4 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2022 • Couples
This is one of my favorite things I have ever done, and certainly my favorite part of my any of my trips to Central America. I stayed in San Antonio with the Chun family, and they were the kindest and most fun people you could ask for. They all went above and beyond to show us their personalities, their culture, and give us a fun and extremely comfortable time. Their home is nice, it is rather large and you will be sleeping in a secondary house which is more or less attached to theirs, so it’s a good distance as you don’t feel you are invading their space, but they are super close by if you need anything during the downtime. Jenny is always around and more than happy to help with whatever. While rustic, it is clean and comfortable. I was surprised by how little mosquitos there were, we didn’t really get bit even when walking in the woods. The water pressure in the shower is really good too!! Much better than all of the hotels we stayed at. I was blown away with ALL of the activities, I knew what we were going to do, but actually doing them was so much different and cooler than I had imagined. In addition, Jenny is an AMAZING cook, and there are many techniques she used that I will be bringing to my own kitchen. Jenny and Reyes will love to talk with you about anything and everything, and we stayed up late into the night doing that. I wish we could’ve spent even more time doing that. The kindness that their family showed (especially Jenny and Reyes) was very heartwarming and I cannot wait to come back and see them.

As for the village itself, it is not hard to get to and their house is very easy to get to from the bus. We caught a bus going to the Jalacte border and got off in San Antonio, but there are many busses which are specifically for San Antonio as well. They will be more than willing to help you find busses to and from their village.

Ask if there’s anything you can bring to help out in the village, I wish we would’ve asked before we came! Things for the children such as crayons are appreciated as things like that can be harder to get here. But ask! Finally, communication with them was 5 star, they respond extremely quickly through WhatsApp or email.

If you decide not to come see them, you are making a BIG mistake. I highly highly highly recommend this activity to anyone who has already found themselves on this page. Just go!

Thank you again to the Chun family and I wish you all very well.
Written March 26, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Katya M
12 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2023 • Couples
We stayed at Reyes and Jenny Chunk's house for the full immersion programm of 2 days. We felt welcome from the first moment when Reyes picked us up from the bus station. He then took us to his farm and showed us how he grows many différents plants and trees. Then we helped Jenny cook and made the cacao drink with her. On the second day we went to Blue Creek, an amazing river with several swimming pools and a giant cave!
We could learn a lot about the Mayan culture and highly recommend this for anyone that wants to help sustain their habitat and traditions.
Written March 25, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

David C
Flagstaff, AZ4 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2024 • Couples
We had an amazing time visiting the Chun family! The caves and waterfalls are far more amazing than the pictures let on. We loved making chocolate by hand and learning the traditional cooking methods. We foraged from native tropical plants and learned to cook with them. Lodging is rustic, so if you camp at all you'll enjoy the set up.
Written February 18, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

milbucksfans
Milwaukee, WI172 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2017 • Family
Our family of four (children ages 13 and 11) recently completed a two-night homestay in San Antonio village with Reyes Chun of the TEA and his family. Our hope was to experience a culture quite different than our own and learn firsthand about Mayan history and traditions, as well as get an up close look at life in the Belizean rainforest.

The hospitality we were shown by Reyes, his wife Jenny, and their large family exceeded all of our expectations. Our family is mostly vegetarian and Jenny was very generous in accommodating our request for veg meals - delicious ones at that. She made us rice and beans, tortillas, fryjacks, and several other traditional Belizean dishes and all were outstanding.

Reyes took us on a nearly 3-hour tour of his "bush" farm, where he grows corn, cacao, spices, and many, many different fruits. It was one of the most eye-opening experiences of my life to hear him describe the practical benefits of one rainforest plant after another, all of which looked alike except for one or two very subtle differences. One plant is used to treat fevers, one to treat boils, one is used for "jungle paper" to leave messages or directions for other villagers. The ancestral knowledge that the Mayan people pass down, generation after generation, is truly remarkable and an incredible asset to their culture.

Even better, Reyes allowed us to help him plant his cornfield in the middle of the rainforest. We were able to experience firsthand how difficult yet rewarding a self-sustaining lifestyle can be and it was fascinating to see how Mayan farming methods have remained consistent over centuries, even despite the advent of modern technology.

Jenny showed us how to make a traditional Mayan cacao drink, letting all of us try our hand at grinding cacao seeds into powder. It was hard work (that Jenny did most of) but the end result was delicious.

The Chun's son, Jeffrey, who recently graduated from high school, took us on a tour of Lubaantun, a sacred Mayan ruin site, and offered a great wealth of knowledge about Mayan history and customs. He also helped us find Lubaantun which, located miles down an extremely rocky road off the main highway, was no small feat.

We cannot say enough positive things about the TEA program and the immersive cultural experience it offers. Perhaps the best part about it is that the funds spent on the homestay, meals, and all tour experiences (which are incredibly affordable when compared to the corporate tour companies offering the same), all stay within the village and provide financial assistance to the local Mayan community.

If you are somewhat adventurous, have a mind that is open to other people and cultures, and want an experience you will certainly never forget, a TEA homestay is likely to be the highlight of your Belizean visit.
Written July 30, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

DidrikH1
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2019 • Couples
Me and my girlfriend just spent two nights in San Antonio Village with Reyes Chun, his family and the local community. We had a GREAT stay!!

We found this organization just a couple of days before travelling to Toledo, but despite the short warning Reyes was able set to set us up with accommodation and a full program of activities!

We really loved how this is an organisation run by and for the locals, where every dollar you spend goes direcly to the community! The money is spread out by you eating at different locations and doing activities with different local families.

You live, eat and sleep as the locals. Where we stayed in San Antonio, we had separate accommodations just next to the host family with comfy beds, electricity and a fan. Even though we went in the hottest part of the season we did not miss aircondition, as the traditional construction of the cabins makes the inside suprisingly cool.

During the activities we learned a lot about how they still used the local plants and nature, how they farmed ecologically, how they cooked, their mayan heritage and traditions, how they made crafts and how they lived in general. Outside the planned activities we either talked with the host family, explored the garden or or just retreated to relax in the hammock. The host family was very friendly and social if you wanted to some company.

All in all, we really recommend staying with the ecofriendly and communitybased organization!

PS: Be awary that they dont have a stable internet connection in the jungle yet and it might take a day to get answer :) Also, the current link to the website on Tripadviser is out of date. Just search for Toledo Ecotourism Association and use the belizemayatourism link ;)
Written April 19, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Dale
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019
We had a great two days and nights with Reyes and Jenny and their family. Reyes even came to us and we all took the bus back together. We stayed in a clean and cozy guest room attached to the family home. We toured the farm, waterfall, went on many nature hikes, and had cooking lessons and craft lessons, along with time in the hammocks. Jenny prepared wonderful vegan meals as we had requested. A few things to note: bus service is sketchy on Sundays, so check ahead to know you can get in and out, also guests use an outhouse (very clean) so bring a flashlight. Bring and use bug spray consistently since little flies/sand fleas can get through the mosquito netting. Also, note that an "easy walk" may include scrambling over large rocks and stepping over stones in creeks. Overall, Reyes and Jenny were wonderful hosts and the natural world is just gorgeous there. A lot of fun for the adventurous and worth going.
Written August 31, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Gibby613
Philadelphia, PA11 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2015
Reyes Chun who runs the TEA in Punta Gorda set us up for 5 days of jungle treks. We traveled each day to a different village (Medina Bank, Blue Creek, San Antonio, Santa Elena and Luguan). We met our guide in villages and saw waterfalls, many plants and animals in the jungle. We were invited into may Mayan families homes where they show us their crafts. The cost is very reasonable and some of the towns have a guest house and can provide meals. Highly recommended for those who do not like commercial tour and love to be outdoors.
Written December 18, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mhpn2014
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2015 • Family
Spent the day with Reyes and his wife Jenny. It was amazing visiting the farm, making cacao drinks, having a typical meal and listening to a marimba performance. Reyes is a wealth of knowledge and is very open and willing to share so much. Also very accommodating to our needs and respectful. Very reasonable price and it goes towards the development of the project and community.
Written May 13, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Alessio G
Prato, Italy14 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019 • Couples
Fantastic way to live the eco tourism in Toledo district, Southern Belize, maybe not so known and advertised but which really deserves to be visited. People are so kind and hospitable that you can stay like in a family! From there you can easily access to Maya ruins and Punta Gorda and participate to farm visit, cave tubing, cooking and chocolate lessons, hiking in the jungle. Don't forget to ask for Mr. Reyes in San Antonio
Written October 5, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Toledo Ecotourism Association Tours - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)