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“Home away from home”
Review of Hickatee Cottages

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Hickatee Cottages
Ranked #1 of 18 Punta Gorda B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 21, 2011

Hickatee Cottages really is more an experience than a place to stay.

Ian and Kate provide a service far beyond what you might expect from a mid-range hotel - coffee brought to the room at dawn, locally sourced gourmet dinners and the best bread in Belize. They are careful not to let standards slip just because they're in the middle of the jungle so there's no bugs in the cottages, or on the patio, John Lewis' finest linen and the best showers I've had in any developing country (including my home in the UK!) As well as delightful jungle trails, Charlie's Bar, bicycles, DVDs, books and a personal service that I've never seen bettered..

My finest memory of Belize is sitting on the patio outside Charlie's Bar in the evening, John Lewis linen, Kate's wonderful bread and a Belikin beer, listening to the myriad of insects chirping and the howler monkeys, well, howling. This is the life!

At Hickatee itself we heard the howlers daily. We saw 6 different species of hummingbird just over breakfast. We saw colonies of Mayan bees, lizards, probably 20 different species of bird (all of which Ian can name), loads of butterflies and moths, including some that weren't even in the field guide. In the late afternoon out front by the carpark, dragonflies danced over the lawn, to be slowly replaced by bats and finally fireflies as the sun set.

Ian also manages a butterfly farm (hence the pineapples in the garden) and took us to see it - a wonderful experience.

Ian and Kate go above and beyond the call of duty every time and their attention to detail is exemplary. Kate's hand drawn map of Toledo is far better than many of the maps available elsewhere and their advice on local tourist attractions - and local gossip - is always forthcoming and always useful. Excellent showers, luxurious rooms, towels of a quality not usually found in developing countries - Kate and Ian make sure they get every little touch right.

One of the best things is how they create an atmosphere where guests get to know each other - it's more like staying with friends than staying in a hotel. Very polite, service-oriented friends.

Only a 30 minute walk (or 10 minute bikeride) to the outskirts of town. This is our second stay and we will definitely stay again. Fell in love with Toledo and in love with Hickatee.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Langstroth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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241 - 247 of 374 reviews

Reviewed April 8, 2011

This is a fantastic place for rest, relaxation in a perfect jungle setting with a family of howler monkeys nearby and, exploring the Myan culture--past and present.
Kate and Ian provided phenomenal service; internet registration and trip planning suggestions; great food--freshly baked bread every meal; a wealth of knowledge about southern Belize, land, animals, flowers and cultures; complete personal services from hot, fresh roasted locally grown coffee delivered to our comfortable bungalow each morning to quickly coming to our resuce when we experienced car trouble in the area.
For the price, it is a real bargain. Highly recommened. Phyllis and Roger from Illinois

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank prominger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2011

Hickatee Cottages deserves all the good reviews it gets. Even before our stay, I knew the place would be special when Kate went way above & beyond the call of duty corresponding with me by e-mail about the Toledo Ecotourism Association and their village homestay program (which we ended up doing for two nights and really enjoyed). I hadn't even booked a room yet and she spent a ton of time helping me. Her enthusiasm and deep knowledge of the region and its attractions made me feel like I'd make the right choice in spending 5 days in the Toledo area.

It's hard to put into words how beautiful and peaceful the grounds are. There are trails that wind through the jungle and to the lodge's "farm" area (check out the pineapples). As a gardener and plant lover, I LOVED the fact that plants in the main area have labels that correspond to a booklet where you can get their botanical and common names and interesting facts. If you like orchids, ask Ian to show you his collection of subtle, delicate native orchids.

Other reviews have mentioned the wonderful rooms, showers, fluffy towels, and morning coffee (Ian is a self-proclaimed coffee snob, which means the coffee is really, really good). But to me, the best thing about this place is how natural it is to interact with other guests, most of whom were kindred spirits (PG isn't on the well-worn tourist track, so it tends to attract a certain adventurous type, I think). Ian and Kate have created, through a combination of their personalities and the layout of the buildings, an environment in which it feels natural to mingle, even for people like us who tend to be on the shy side. The main building (Charlie's Bar) has a huge front porch with tables where you can have a private romantic breakfast or talk to other guests. We met some really interesting people, including two scientists who collected and measured bats on the property while we were there... we looked forward to the nightly "bat show."

Don't be put off by the fact that they're outside of PG. It took us just 15 minutes to bike into town (Hickatee provides free bikes for guests) and we got rides with Ian or other guests on a couple of occasions. A cab is US$10 one way.

Loved this place and hope to come back!

Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
1  Thank ethelred30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 4, 2011

Hickatee owners Kate & Ian made my trip to Punta Gorda extra special. From their small touches in my room, to sharing their abundant knowledge of the flora, fauna and culture of the area, to arranging for trips and tours, their efforts made my stay in PG all the more enjoyable. They truly went out of their way to make my visa renewal trip as relaxing and enjoyable as possible.

If you're looking for a flashy and action filled hotel, stay elsewhere (and outside of PG), but if you're intrigued by hearing the sounds of nature (including Howler monkeys) from your room and want to enjoy great food and company in an all-natural setting, Hickatee is your hotel!

Room Tip: Just tell Kate or Ian your needs/desires!
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  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled solo
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Thank TexasPeyton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 3, 2011

This was our 4th trip to Hickatee. Kate and Ian are wonderful hosts and have crafted an inviting refuge. Kate is a fantastic chef. The accommodations are great and well maintained. Kate and Ian are personable and go out of their way to take care of their guests. They know the area and much of Belize. With their knowledge, they were are able to help us do and see interesting sites, places and people each trip. Also, each trip we have met interesting people who were staying at Hickatee and we have enjoyed hearing of their travels, experience and lives.
We will go back.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank TM04
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 21, 2011

We had a week in Belize and decided to spend it all here and glad we did! This place is a gem in the jungle and a great value: exceedingly clean, comfortable, peaceful rooms; Ian and Kate (owners) go the extra mile to make sure guests are happy; central to a variety of activities; great, locally-sourced food ingredients including organic, shade-grown and hand-roasted coffee; Kate is a wonderful cook and Ian is a delightful host. If you plan to stay in this area, stay at Hickatee.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Goatlips
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 15, 2011

Some people take vacations, others travel. Kate told me her practice is to take the two final days of a journey to rest and care for herself before she heads back home. Good advice. My daughter and I fell absolutely in love with the Toledo District, a world away from Belize City and the Cayes. After 3 days with the Maya Village Homestay Network at Aquacate Village Kate and Ian's Hickatee Cottages was our last stop before heading back to the States. Our spacious cottage, hot shower, scented sheets and resident Howler Monkey troop topped off a fabulous tour of Belize. We were ready to appreciate the complimentary drinking water, the lovable curl in your lap pet cats, recycling bins for the stuff we never knew what to do with, our own hammock on the front porch, a delicious gormet dinner with Ian's fabulous rum punch and fresh baked bread with mango jam the next morning before Ian gave us a ride back to town to the bus stop. Ian also sent my daughter off with a book from his extensive library for our 7 hour ride back to Belize City. We felt rested, healthy and happy indeed thanks to the extraordinary care we received at Hickatee Cottages.

  • Stayed: February 2011
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2  Thank starla21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hickatee Cottages

Address: Mile 1.5, Ex-Servicemen Road | (Aka Boom Creek Road), Punta Gorda ..., Belize
Location: Belize > Toledo District > Punta Gorda
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 18 B&Bs / Inns in Punta Gorda
Price Range: $97 - $124 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Top-rated jungle B&B, just one mile from PG Town in southern Belize, Hickatee offers Caribbean-style accommodation, bar-restaurant, plunge pool, morning coffee delivered to your verandah, free bikes, over a mile of nature trails on site, and free visits to Fallen Stones Butterfly Farm. Family-run, we offer friendly service, a comfortable relaxed atmosphere, excellent value for money, and a great base from which to explore the offshore southern cayes and Toledo’s many inland attractions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hickatee Cottages Hotel Punta Gorda
Hickatee Cottages Belize/Punta Gorda

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