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“Definitely worth a stop if you're in the area”

Green Hills Butterfly Ranch
Ranked #29 of 75 things to do in Cayo
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Attraction details
Owner description: Green Hills Butterfly Ranch is the place to go to enjoy Belize butterflies and learn about them in the process. Green Hills literally has thousands of live butterflies on display in a 4,000 square feet walk-in flight area. The guided tour in the butterfly flight area and the Blue Morpho Breeding Center takes about an hour. The facilities are surrounded by a botanical garden with more than 150 labeled plants, shrubs and trees. These gardens are home to dozens of hummingbirds, and the average visitor can easily see eight or even more species while visiting the Butterfly Ranch. Green Hills is worth a stop on your way to or from other popular destinations such as the Mountain Pine Ridge, Barton Creek, Caracol or the nearby villages of San Antonio and El Progresso. We open at 7 am and close at 4 pm. Late tours are welcome but only after reservation.
Reviewed April 4, 2013

We didn't plan to stop here, but we decided to stop in after the hosts at our lodge recommended it, and we learned that it wasn't that far out of the way. I was pleasantly surprised with both the butterfly house and the demonstration of the caterpillar/butterfly lifecycle after the tour. We went early in the morning so we were able to see butterflies emerging from their cocoons, which was pretty cool. It was overcast when we went and they told us there is more activity when the sun is shining, but they seemed pretty active to me! It must be quite a sight when there is a lot of sun.

If you want good photographs this is a great place to visit. The operation is small, and you won't spend more than 45min-1hr here, but overall I think it was well worth the money. A nice little tack-on activity if you're heading to/from the mountain pine ridge area.

Thank William_Walker24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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53 - 57 of 110 reviews

Reviewed April 4, 2013

I could definitely see families enjoying this. I would HIGHLY recommend having 4x4 if you're going to attempt Chiquibul/Pine Ridge Road. We got here in a compact car but it took forever & we were nervous we'd get a flat tire at any moment.

This is a small ranch, but I really enjoyed seeing the vibrant hummingbirds outdoors. They have 9 different species that flit in & out. However, considering the Belize Zoo costs $15 I think charging $10 for the butterfly ranch is a bit steep.

Still, our guide gave us a brief tour (all the butterflies are in one room) and allowed us to linger as long as we wanted. There is a great variety of butterflies here. She also showed us the entire growth process from larva to caterpillar to butterfly. We were only here about an hour, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Thank gorocketdog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 2, 2013

If you're in the San Ignacio area of Belize and you love to see the beauties of nature, you must go to Green Hills Butterfly Ranch, which is about 14 miles from the town.

We were welcomed by the Dutch owners Jan and his wife to their property where they raise butterflies commercially in a large walk-through enclosure. The insects land on you as you walk through and fly past as if you're in fairyland! Really magical. I asked Jan about their operation in some detail: how they breed their butterflies, harvest the eggs, propogate the caterpillars and pupa, where they sell to and why they do it. Very interesting stuff indeed.

The main attraction for us though was NOT the butterflies. We had been told by a friend that at Green Hills they managed to attract many species of hummingbirds to two feeders in their lovely verdant garden. As big fans of hummers this clearly was not to be missed! And we found ourselves in hummingbird heaven!

We counted six different species and at times up to 30 birds whizzing about our heads, sometimes just inches away. We must have spent more than an hour admiring these dazzling birds, photographing them perched, feeding and on the wing, observing the species' pecking orders, and working out which species was which. We were concerned about being there for too long, but Jan and his wife Tineke didn't seem to mind us hanging around at all. So take your time, sit quietly and observe these flying treasures.

To see so many birds freely coming and going was a joy - for us one of the highlights of our trip to Belize.

Thank Jane T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 21, 2013

The butterfly area was awesome and well thought out. we enjoyed the freedom to walk in with the butterflies and have them land on us. The tour was very interesting and well done. We took children ages 4-5 years old and they were fasinated. The hosts were very interactive and patient, thank you. The hummingbirds were fasinating to both the children and the teachers. It is amazing how many species of both the birds and the butterflies they were able to attract.

Thank Faye M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 8, 2013

Butterflies are great. Anyone who doesn't like butterflies is obviously disturbed. However, after reading through several of these reviews, and compiling my own thoughts on this place, I have to wonder if maybe some of you haven't been butterfly brainwashed. First of all, I think the "4000 square foot" claim may be a bit generous. Granted, I didn't have my tape measure, and it's a petty qualm to be sure, but that's just me. Second, $30USD for a 15 minute tour? Our guide said it would take about 30 minutes (still a little pricey if you ask me, and not the hour tour claimed in the description) but in fact we walked through the butterfly house, were educated on the pupa, and saw what there was to see in 15 minutes. Lastly, our guide informed us that the butterflies are bred purely for the tourism business, so no scientific or "worldly" benefit other than the minor economic influence.
On a positive note: the employees here seem to genuinely enjoy their work, the grounds are beautiful and wonderfully located, and seeing a gob of butterflies in one place, flittering about your person, is pretty magical.

2  Thank Jason R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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