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“Great stop-over when landing in Belize”

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Orchid Garden Eco-Village Belize
Ranked #4 of 26 Belize City B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Oregon
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Great stop-over when landing in Belize”
Reviewed January 13, 2013

We were very pleased with the personal attention, genuineness, friendliness, and hospitality of Christine and her staff. The Belizean meals were excellent, as was the service. The grounds are beautiful, and as others have said, you feel as though you're in the jungle, even though the resort is located right off of the Western Highway. Accommodations were clean and adequate, but very basic and sparse. The guide, Alfredo, who met us at the airport was excellent...very knowledgable, kind, helpful, and spoke excellent English. We saw iguana in the sanctuary on-site, and enjoyed the tour of the grounds. I personally wouldn't choose to make this my home base in Belize, because there is so much to see in the other areas of the country, and all of the eco-lodges we stayed at had similar tours (as mentioned by other guests) available. I do believe the pricing was better at Orchid Garden, however. Although there is what is called a "natural" swimming hole on the grounds, it was not set-up for swimming/sunbathing, and I would personally be reluctant to use it. If the furniture and buildings were upgraded, and there was a useable pool available I'd give it a 5, based on service & hospitality alone, but otherwise not.

Room Tip: We had a room with a king bed. It was a ways away from the lodge area, but the staff were very graci...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
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2 Thank diharris27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
Reviewed January 6, 2013

When we decided in the spring of 2012 to make Belize as our year-end holiday destination, we looked at many options and our final choice was Orchid Garden Eco Village, for many reasons: good family-friendly atmosphere, reasonable price for the tour packages, a variety of tour destinations and activities, all backed up buy excellent rating in Trip Advisor. Our stay at this B&B hotel simply exceeded our expectations!

We stayed there on a 8 night 9 day package with tours to Tikal and Ambergris Caye island and the experience more than met our expectations. Jason was very prompt in answering all our questions, and upon our arrival at Belize airport, our new friend Alfredo greeted us and took us to the hotel, where we had a delicious lunch. The hotel is close to the highway to downtown Belize City, but the hotel compound was like a mini jungle with many varieties of flora and fauna, and hence refreshingly quaint and peaceful. Our rooms were spacious (we had connecting rooms with four beds!), clean, and comfortable. The food was delicious, healthy, and excellent with a lot of varieties - two of us were vegetarians and the hotel catered very well to their needs too. During our stay there, we made trips to Tikal, Lamanai, ATM (Crystal maiden cave), San Pedro, zip-lining and cave tubing, with excellent tour guides, which were all arranged by the hotel (and included in the package price). We had great experience at all these tours, especially at Tikal and at the ATM (a must see in Belize).

Our hosts Christine and Jason are a nice and friendly couple, with Christine looking after the needs of every guest to the minutest detail. We had a chance to see Jason's museum with his collections containing many stones and wooden carvings.

Alfredo is an amazing person and an excellent tour guide (he accompanied us on many tours and knows so much about the culture, history, wildlife, and civilization), a very good friend (we freely talked about lives and the kids were always tormenting him with questions which he always patiently answered), and a good role model. The other staff at the hotel (Pedro, Alvaro, and the serving staff) were also very nice, friendly, and courteous.

If you are looking forward to staying at a resort providing sandy beaches and other high-end luxuries, this is definitely not your place. But if you want a worry-free vacation with many outdoor activities, all taken care of for you - the transportation, tour guides, and lunch are all pre-arranged, in a cosy and friendly setting (we got to meet all the guests during our stays and made friends with many of them), this place should be your number one choice in Belize.

Thank you Christine, Jason, Alfredo and the rest of the staff for making this a very memorable trip for us. Thanks for opening your hearts and home and making it a "home away from home" experience for us.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Achyuthans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed January 6, 2013

I always return from vacations and restaurants intending to write a review, but never get around to it. Not happening here. I cannot give Christine, Jason and their warm, welcoming staff enough praise. Our family of five ( includings sons ages-20,23,24) went from xmas eve to new year's eve and experience the most well thought out, seemlessly organized vacation we have ever enjoyed. While for us it was a perfect family destination, their accomodations and side-trips would delight couples, seniors and younger families, too. We arrived at Belize Intl to find Alfredo, sign in hand, to van us 15- 20 minutes to Orchid Garden. We had an hour to settle in then met for the 6PM dinner. Christine, plans and oversees the meal preparations which are often tailored to individual needs and even makes different meals for different guests to avoid duplication and they are excellent. Several courses including delicious vegetarian dishes- soups, flans, salads, chicken, fish even grilled lobster one evening, ice cream or fresh fruits for dessert. On a side note, my wife has never traveled south of the border without succumbing some degree of tourista despite precautions- until this trip! None of us had a moment of GI upset, and I understand that Christine ensures that only purified water is served and even used to wash all the fresh produce. The rooms are clean, large and comfortable and on the utilitarian side of the spectrum. Another digression, this is not a ritz-pampered, marble-fountained spa retreat destination- it's all about fun activities, beautiful nature and adventure with really, really nice, knowledgable staff and proprietors taking care of ALL of the details.
I emailed back and forth to Jason several times trying to make sure that we would maximize our time there with the various excursions, but I needn't have worried. They have this down to a perfect science, knowing just how much can be done enjoyably in one day-and even know the cruise ship schedules to work around the times when the sites are mobbed. This often involves early starts but we got into that routine easily, even with three boys that generally sleep late, but were awake and eager for the next adventure. While the itinerary will vary based on what you select I would like mention ours. Day1 arrival and dinner as I mentioned, Day2 Zip-Lining (fun but very safe with DOUBLE wires- unlike our trip in Costa Rico), Then Cave tubing with headlamps, nice buffet lunch there then Belize Zoo with Pedro. I was a bit skeptical about the Zoo based on some reviews, but it was actually very good and animalcentric. Their denizens were not captured but this is more of a sanctuary for indiginous injured animals, confiscated "pets",etc with a goal of release whenever possible- so perhaps the exhibits vary, but we saw many animals in nice habitats that we had never seen before in many other zoologic exhibits. Dinner at Orchid Garden. Day3 breakfast, then water taxi to San Pedro abt 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Arrived early enough to have lunch of our choice and move up our Hol Chan and Shark Ray half day snorkeling to this afternoon. The Sun Breeze Suites (not Hotel) afforded a beautiful ocean front view with very nice modern rooms- again exceeding my expectations. Dinner, drinks and visiting San Pedro each evening. Day4 fit in a second half day of snorkeling at Mexico Rocks and Tres Cocos (Our favorite for variety of corals and colorful fishes). Day5 8:00 AM water taxi back to Orchid Garden grabbed new clothes and jumped back in van with Alvero for ride to Guatamalan border. Then Into Rene's van to complete 3 hour journey to Casa Don David. Again a well vetted, english-spoken hotel with very interesting grounds- (fun to discover on your own) a late lunch then back with Rene to visit the very colorful town of Flores- we did most of our souvenier shopping here. Back to Don David's for dinner and turned in early, Day6 Rene and Juan (our tour guide) picked us up at the hotel at 5:30 AM to begin the absolute highlight of our vacation- TIKAL! Must see to believe type of place- the only thing I want to mention is to give huge kudos to Juan. One of the most knowledgable interesting guides we have had, his understanding of the Mayans: history, language, calendar, astronomy, politics, agriculture is vast, but his ability to tie in climatology, nature, botony is very thought-provoking and leaves us questing for more. So back to the hotel to check-out and reverse border trek. Note the border is one of the only out of pocket expenses we had other than meals at San Pedro. Expect to pay about $18 US to leave Belize and about $3 to leave Guatamala per person. Dinner at Orchid Garden. Day7 ATM leave Orchid around 730AM and hour plus ride to ATM. The ATM tour was probably the most adventurous and physical part of the trip and may not be for everyone. About an hour rain forest hike in, 3-4 hours in cave, swimming, squeezing thru cracks and climbing rocks with a surprising amount of maya artifacts, pottery, skeletons,etc. Lunch outside cave before or after atm and then trip back and dinner at Orchid. Final Day8 breakfast and 1 1/2 hour tour of grounds with Alfredo, the main guide for Orchid Garden- an extremely warm and kind person with an obvious and contagious love of his country and the Eco-Village. Excellent tour with discussions from history and regional geopolitics to nature and use of local plants for food, construction, medicine and alcohol.
I believe one of the truest measurements of the vacation was the DAILY affirmations from our threee boys of how much fun and interesting everything was and one of their "best trips ever". Again thank you to Christine, Jason, Alfredo and all the wonderful staff of Orchid Gardens for a truly amzing vacation. Also two side comments. First I feel that the cost of this "package" was VERY reasonable for the quality of all the meals, accomodations, fees, admissions, transportation, etc. and it is so nice not to have to reach for your wallet multiple times a day. WE just left a tip with Christine at the end of the week to distribute to the staff. Second is to compliment Trip Advisor and its community of users- I had no previous experience or knowledge of Orchid Garden outside of Trip Advisor's reviews, so went into this with a little trepidation- but absolutely none now. Thanks, Christopher G.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
4 Thank Christopher G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level Contributor
40 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed December 30, 2012

It is hard to capture all the wonderful things that my family of 4 experienced while staying at the Eco Village. We stayed over Christmas from 20 to 27 Dec and then went to San Pedro for 5 days. Our time at Eco Village was nothing short of perfect. Now let me start off by saying that it is not "Malibu Beach Luxury" but it is better in so many ways. Its real! First, Christine and Jason and the entire staff are total professionals. They are kind and only want to make your stay a good experience. The food here is so good. It is fresh and tasty, well-presented and plentiful! They are very particular about each meal making sure each guest is pleased. You get many courses and it is all so good. Even my 14 year old daughter who lives on Ramen and Mac and Cheese was happy! The coffee and strong and delicious. The grounds are beautiful as well and you feel like you are in an outdoor park the whole time. The beautiful plants and trees and yes wildlife. Bring bug spray. You will need it. But please don't let that bother you. It is part of the tropical jungle. The rooms are nothing special but they are very clean and very large. We were given two rooms so my kids got their own double beds and the adjoining room also had two doubles. The AC worked fine. The mattresses are firm and my husband started to have back issues so he told the staff and a new mattress was brought in that night. So we used the Eco Village as our base camp so to speak for all our tours. Alfredo was our guide for most of our trips. He is an amazing, wonderful person that I am honored to have met. He is smart, kind, professional and speaks great English. He knows so much about Belize, Guatemala and Mexico. Ask him anything? He knows the animals the trees, languages, culture, you name it. So we did many tours- all of them amazing. We liked Tikal the best. I will review that separately. ATM and New River Cruise/Lamanai were fantastic. Zip Line and Cave tubing was also fun and interesting. My daughter and I spent a whole day with Alfredo doing driving tour of much of the Cayo District. We saw the Mennonite District and had the best ice cream on the planet. We then went to the Butter Fly Farm in Green Hills and it was so much fun. One thing I must point out is the way the Eco Staff dealt with problems and personal needs. Let me back up. I was supposed to go on this trip last Dec. I had a very serious injury requiring surgery and couldn't go. I emailed Christine and Jason and they said no problem, get better and we see you next year. I almost cried at the kindness of these two. No charge at all just come back next year. They even negotiated with Tikal and La Casa Don David in Guatemala. Now this was over Christmas remember. Okay, so now we are there and since we booked in 2011, Tikal was a 3 day trip but now it is only 2 days. We found ourselves with a day to fill. Well Christine expertly filled it with an amazing trip to Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary and The Belize Zoo. I can't stress enough how wonderful this place is. Again, if you are expecting the Beverly Hills Hilton, then you will will disappointed. If you want the vacation of a lifetime that stay here.

Room Tip: All the rooms are pretty much the same. There is an internet cafe room with one TV.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
3 Thank Army4U
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tempe, Arizona
Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed December 26, 2012

Well ,I don't normally write a review but this was a must. Three couples ages 30-60 all agree that the Orchid garden Eco village from the ownership to the staff were absolutly the most professional, helpfull and kind people we have ever experienced and we travel quite a bit.Christine/ owner/ cook has developed a menu which is unequal to any other taylored also to individual preferences. We booked with Eco village a land and sea package of 10 days which included a separate venue everyday and a 2 day trip to Tikal and finaly a 3 day stay on the Island Ambergris Caye. The Guides, accomadations and transportation were ALL top notch not to mention our driver Alfredo whom became our friend and was always one step ahead on all needs.I'm not sure I will be able to top this trip ..Seriously.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank BMcBride
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed December 19, 2012

In 2-1/2 weeks of traveling in Belize, this was by far the nicest place we stayed and great value compared to other facilities. This unique lodge / natural museum (!) has been built to capture the flavour of the Belizean countryside. It is staffed by wonderful people who were very friendly and thoughtful and who went the extra mile to ensure our needs were met, including taking the time to walk us around the grounds and show us the wildlife. The setting is very pretty and natural, while just a short drive from the airport, and they serve great organic/local food. (Though the rooms are plain, we found all accommodations in Belize to be fairly rustic and relatively highly priced.) It is just a short distance from the Belize Zoo (which we almost made the mistake of skipping) and though there aren't a lot of other local attractions (i.e. within 1 hour drive), we'd definitely recommend the Eco-Village for a brief stay. It is just a short ride out of Belize City and a much, MUCH better option than staying in BC when you're transiting through. (Having spent a bit of time in BC, we can definitely second the opinions of the locals that BC is pretty dangerous, grim and surprisingly had absolutely nothing of interest.) Private airport transport is basically the same price as a taxi to/from Belize City. (We arrived by local bus, which is a much cheaper option, but not recommended as the facility is neither well signed nor well known to the locals.)

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Ctjohnston
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
15 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed December 18, 2012

My fiance and I went for a 5 day short get away. When we arrived at the airport it was great hospitality. We were able to take adventure trips everyday including the Mayan Ruins, snorkeling and a ATM cave tour. They chose the top tour guides to make sure you have the best experience. Breakfast and dinner are included and all the lunches were on the tour! The food was amazing and very fresh. I do not have any complaints and all the staff is very knowledgeable about the Mayan culture!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Megan B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Orchid Garden Eco-Village Belize

Property: Orchid Garden Eco-Village Belize
Address: 14.5 Mile Western Highway, Belize City 225, Belize
Location: Belize > Belize District > Belize City
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 26 B&Bs / Inns in Belize City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Orchid Garden Eco-Village Belize 4*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our Belize Vacations package take in the tropical rain forests, abundant wildlife, fascinating Mayan monuments, awesome underground caves, amazing coral reefs, mangroves and wetlands; they involve activities such as world-class snorkeling or diving along the coral reef, zip-lining through the rainforest canopy, tubing through a caves branch system, jungle horseback riding, river and lagoon wildlife cruising, exploring the ruins of ancient Mayan cities and other activities to experience the beauty of the tropical ecology in Belize. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Orchid Garden Eco-Village Belize Belize City

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