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“Customized Day Trips”
Review of UpClose Belize

UpClose Belize
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Attraction details
Owner description: The best Belize Tours, Belize Vacation Packages, and Belize Group Expeditions - at the best prices! We GUARANTEE that we can create a vacation experience in Belize unique to your interests while matching your budget. Our itineraries are completely free, and with no obligation to book! Give us a try - there is absolutely nothing to lose and a wonderful vacation in Belize to gain! We have never met a budget we could not match - ever! We have never had an itinerary too complex to complete - including overnight side trips to Mexico & Guatemala! Born and raised in this jewel we call Belize, we are the Belize Adventure Experts you can trust to help you plan your best Belize tours, accommodation, and transfers.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Wheelchair access, Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Reviewed April 27, 2012

Kim was fabulous in putting together an itinerary for all of the events that we wanted to experience. She grew up in Belize and appears to know all about the country and everything it has to offer from her own personal experiences. She seems so well connected to all of the people and companies that run the events ( ATV riding, cave tubing, zip lines, Mayan excursions, etc.) and the transportation support (taxi tour guides) and restaurants and hotels that she gave us multiple options as to how we could fit everything in and according to our own time frame. We were not required to pick from preplanned trips that only occur on certain times and days. She gave us all the flexibility we wanted and her prices were reasonable. On the day before we left, we went from our resort in Placencia to Tikal in Guatemala. Kim arranged for us to spend our last night at a beautiful hillside hotel in San Ignacio which gave us a nice inland/mountain experience and put us much closer to the Belize airport for our trip home. I definitely recommend her and her company.

Thank G F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed March 2, 2012

Belize has many things to offer, and it may be difficult to plan a first visit, especially if you want to cover a lot in a short period of time.
UpClose Belize helped us plan the vacation, and they (Kim and Carleen) were always fast to respond by email or phone any moment if any questions or problems. You have to check carefully date and time of all your itinerary and if in doubt ask questions or ask for clarifications, - and once you there you can rely on email. All our tour guides and drivers were excellent and just interesting to talk with. We want to especially thank Kinsley Augustus - really a magician of a driver and tour guy combined.
About our stay - We stayed at Barefoot hotel at Caye Caulker, and then at Black Rock lodge on mainland. During one week we snorkeled, dived, visited ATM, Tikal, Caracol, and smaller attractions - zip-lining, cave tubing and zoo.

1  Thank Oleg V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2012

We struggled to figure out what to do when our cruise stopped in Belize and changed our minds several times. By the time we made a decision, the ship’s excursion to Goff’s Caye was sold out. My daughters and I had no interest in snorkeling, but we wanted to be on a beach. I first contacted Katie Valk who put me in touch with Kimberlee Chanona of Upclose Belize (kim@upclosebelize.com).

Kim arranged for us to be part of a group tour to Goff’s Caye that left from the Tourism Village. That tour was run by www.belizeshoretours.com or Eco Tours Belize. Kim was extremely responsive to my many emails and questions. She would have arranged for any type of tour that we wanted, but felt that this one met our needs.

We were told to get on an early tender to the Tourism Village and find the representative that would be waiting for us. Somehow we missed the person with our name, but when we mentioned Kim’s name (or Upclose Belize?) we were quickly and easily directed to the right place.

Even the short wait for the tour to begin was pleasant. We sat and talked with a couple of men from Belize who turned out to be our tour guides. Such friendly guys! Once the group of about 25 people was assembled we boarded a boat to Goff’s Caye.

Goff’s Caye is magnificent with crystal clear water. Truly a paradise. It is tiny, with a porta-potty type changing structure and a stand for snacks, beer and some jewelry for sale. The tour operators (including one EMT) took everyone to the island first to get settled. Then anyone who wished to snorkel went back out on the boat. To my complete shock both of my daughters opted to join my husband and son snorkeling. They LOVED it. They went in a slower moving group, snorkeling from the boat offshore to the island over a 45 minute period. I could not snorkel (health reasons), but I did put on a face mask and look around under water. What gorgeous fish!!! I am so glad we did not miss out on this opportunity. We spent the remainder of the day relaxing on the beach.

The only upsetting part of the day was that many people on the tour did not tip the tour operators. The staff all worked very hard to make sure that we had a great day and were quite friendly. They deserved to be tipped! At one point on the island we asked about returning to shore and they told us that on vacation there should be no worries and they would get us back in time. We did, in fact, return with plenty of time to do a little shopping in the Tourism Village. Best day of the cruise!!!

1  Thank bcaha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 3, 2012

Just wanted to let
> you know that we truly enjoyed our day Cave Kayaking with José and Pedro. It was
> an awesome trip and I appreciate you making it work for us. I know that
> the cruise ship passengers pose a challenge for you and I know you
> went above and beyond to accommodate. From start to finish, we loved
> every minute of the trip. José was very attentive and personable.
> He obviously loves what he does!
>
> We paid our balance to Pedro in cash as well as a tip for both he and
> José. Both very well deserved. If our future travels take us to
> Belize, you can be sure we will look you up, perhaps for an overnight
> trip on the river!
>
> You Rock!
> Thanks again,
> Liz and Glenn Van Vliet

1  Thank Liz V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 21, 2011

First off, I want to throw the disclaimer out that we did not tour with UpClose Belize.
With that said, if their tours are half as efficient, friendly and helpful as their support has been, then you are in VERY capable hands. Kim contacted me before anybody else did. The chat option on their website is wonderful. For all the vacationers in the US who are trying to plan a tour in another country, you know how frustrating it is to sit and wait for a local business in another country to get around to checking their email and respond back to you. Out of the 10 places I emailed, 7 never bothered to email me back. Most of us know that planning a multi-country vacation is stressful. Having somebody responsive and helpful on the other end can make all the difference in your planning.
With that said, Kim held my hands from the moment I first inquired about the tour. She literally called the other tour companies in Belize to try to find what I needed for our group. She answered all my questions about Belize City and San Pedro, regardless of whether they had anything to do with the tour and in the end, we did not book with her because another tour came through with the itinerary that we needed. Even so, she remained helpful. She wants you to have a good time in Belize, whether it is with her or not, and will go to great lengths to help you out and accommodate your needs. The next time we are in Belize, I will not hesitate to contact her first and foremost.

Kim, thank you for all that you have done. I hope the rest of Belize will be as wonderful as you have been!

Thank MllePookie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
KimBelize, Owner at UpClose Belize, responded to this reviewResponded October 28, 2011

Thank you for such a wonderful review. It was my pleasure helping you enjoy your Belize excursion!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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