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“Wonderful place; terrible bugs”

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Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort
Ranked #1 of 13 Hotels in Hopkins
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed February 28, 2013

We returned a few days ago from a seven night stay at Hamanasi, a resort we selected based on the stellar Trip Advisor reviews. We opted for the all-inclusive package that included five excursions and all meals. My wife and I stayed in a tree house, our three kids stayed in a beachfront cabin.

We couldn't have been happier with the accommodations: the rooms were large (especially the tree house, which was like an entire condo in the sky with an outdoor deck with a jacuzzi) and well appointed, wonderful beds, and the maids did a fantastic job keeping them clean and well stocked with towels and fresh drinking water.

We enjoyed all the excursions. We snorkeled twice on the beautiful reef (the divers we spoke with raved about their dives), took a fascinating inner tube tour through a massive cave filled with Mayan artifacts, went horseback riding in the jungle, and took a rigorous hike up a steep grade and swam in a picturesque waterfall pool (I always love a prize after a tough hike). All the guides were knowledgeable and charismatic. In fact, the entire staff seemed especially well-trained and professional.

The picturesque dining area, whether on the veranda overlooking the ocean, or at a table set right on the beach, was a highlight of the property. The kitchen staff did an admirable job accommodating us as vegetarians (pescatarians), preparing a large variety of tasty, plentiful dishes. If I had one complaint it would be the funky taste of the smoothies and tropical drinks (I don't know if it was the milk or cream they used).. Even with a high level of physical exertion, the trip to Hamanasi is a net weight gain.

The only negative aspect of our experience were the biting insects. Even though we followed the instructions of the staff, dousing ourselves in Deet and baby oil, all of us (five days after returning) are still covered with itchy, inflamed bites. We're not sure where or when we were bitten because the offending sand flies are invisible ("no-seeums").

I feel terrible reporting this problem. It is certainly no fault of Hamanasi and I believe it is a scourge of Southern Belize. But for us, at least, it was a deal breaker, and we won't return. I do hope our experience with the sand flies was an anomaly and that other visitors report a different experience, because besides the itchy discomfort, this is a wonderful resort.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
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6  Thank ssacks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,057 - 1,063 of 1,981 reviews

Reviewed February 27, 2013

Hamanasi is a low-key, beautiful resort that combines relaxation and adventure. The choices of activities are endless, the beach is lovely, accommodations are large, well provisioned and luxurious, and the food was far superior to most Caribbean offerings. We felt like we were in a jungle (even though we had a beachfront honeymoon suite )due to the number of trees and plantings that are immaculately cared for. We went for the scuba diving and it was a well run operation with a highly professional staff. At first we were concerned that there were several students and beginner divers on the boat, but the dive instructors split everyone up according to experience and ability and each group had their own instructor. Surface intervals were at an island resort where we were treated to fresh fruit, juice and cookies. The Monkey River trip was incredible and educational and was led by one of the best naturalists we have encountered. As so many other reviewers have mentioned, the entire staff is exceptional- friendly, caring, cheerful and competent. There is nothing you can ask for that they will try to accommodate and they almost always succeed. The resort is small, quiet, remote and exactly what we were looking for.

Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
1  Thank RT/DT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 25, 2013

My wife and I just completed an 8 day stay at Hamanasi, our first at this location. We based our decision to stay primarily on the overwhelmingly positive reviews on TripAdvisor. Frankly, we were a bit nervous, thinking that the reviews were too good to be true. Our reticence was without merit as our stay met and exceeded all of our expectations.

The friendly, attentive and exceptional service was at least equal to anything we have experienced on previous vacations. The food was outstanding, with great variety. The only downside was trying to fit into my wet suit as the week progressed proved increasingly challenging. Our adventures - diving, snorkeling, kayaking and visiting the Mayan ruins in western Belize were all outstanding. The guides were knowledgeable, friendly and very helpful.

As a reasonably recently minted diver, I found the diving exquisite. Three days of diving, each with new experiences. Coral and fish along the southern barrier reef are amazingly varied. Swimming face to face with turtles, watching rays fly underwater, and seeing huge lobsters run across the coral are indelibly etched in my memories. The rental gear was very good and the dive team were absolutely first rate. On my first dive, one of the guests had a medical issue at the end of the dive. The crews response showed excellent training as they quickly gathered up all the divers, rushed to the town of Dangriga and had arranged by radio to have a doctor waiting. As an anesthesiologist, I was most impressed by the team's professionalism. The guest recovered without event and returned to the resort the next day.

We enjoyed this trip so much, we have already arranged to return later this year. Truly a first class resort that should be a consideration for anyone visiting Belize.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank foodsterPortland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 24, 2013

We've experienced five resorts in Belize. Every one of them have been terrific but only one can be the best. That's Hamanasi. Their dedication to your comfort is unmatched.

It was like "Cheers", remember "where everyone knows your name...". Only prettier.

Food service was as good as the presentation which was as good as the taste. Suzet made sure that everything ran smoothly and it did.

Our waterfront room was comfortable as it could be while offering views straight from your dreams.

Snorkeling was great and the guides watched out for the safety of all swimmers (yes they knew us all by name too). I mention safety because snorkeling guides at other places can occasionally get caught up doing their own thing. Not at Hamanasi.

Go, enjoy and say hello to Suzet, Jo, Daryl, Melonie, Franklin and the rest of the Hamanasi crew, they'll know who you are.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank robert a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 21, 2013

My wife, daughter, son-in-law and I visited for the third week of January, 2013. (My daughter's review is dated 1/25). All our communication with reservations was friendly, crisp and complete. They arranged our small plane and shuttle transfers that were flawless. All of the staff from the shuttle driver to the wait staff and the dive crew remember your name and unit # after you have met them once. (How do they do that!!)
When you arrive at the resort, they immediately offer a meal or snack or drink, even if it's outside the normal meal schedule. Your luggage appears in your room and you receive an orientation to the resort's services. You bring your dive equipment to the dive operations building, show your C-card, sign the usual paperwork, pick out your rentals if needed and that's the last time you touch your gear away from the dock for the rest of your stay. Imagine signing up for a dive, then going to the breakfast buffet at 7:15 (or earlier if you like more coffee) and strolling out on the dock at 7:45. Everything is ready to go! And when you return, you make sure your small stuff is in the mesh bag they furnish with your unit #. Then you leave the dock and go to lunch. I thought I had received excellent service elsewhere but that just meant I didn't know what excellent service was! Now I am really spoiled!! (We have dived at dozens of warm weather locations.)
Our divemaster, Charles, was a jewel: patient, safe, helpful and super-competent. Especially if you are an old diver, a new diver or a rusty diver, he's excellent! My son is a PADI instructor, I've been diving, on and off, since 1958 and my wife and daughter since the early 1990's and we've never been with a more competent, knowledgable and friendly crew! On every dive, we saw eagle rays, turtles and the rest of a very lush reef, moreso than north by San Pedro.
They have quite a selection of inland activities. My wife and daughter had a great horseback ride, almost three hours and very challenging! My wife and I visited the Mayan ruins at and near San Ignacio with a resort guide, Golden. Great education, wonderful tour and even the lunch was special at the San Ignacio Resort Hotel. (If it's good enough for Queen Elizibeth, it's good enough for me.)
Happy hour is supervised by Bartender Mark who has an amazing selection of special cocktails and the bar prices are very reasonable. He has a number of puzzles waiting, a vast knowledge of the community and the country but don't forget the old adage: Never bet on another man's trick! Great fun in the comfortable lounge area!
About the bugs: We had been eaten alive by the no-see-ums on Roatan three years ago so when we saw them mentioned on their website, we came prepared. Each day we put on our sunscreen, then used Repel 100 up to our knees, back of neck and exposed parts of arms. We also noticed the resort taking precautions and combined with what we did, my wife and daughter had no bites, I had two and my son-in-law, three. We are from Minnesota where the state bird is the mosquito and found that here, with reasonable precautions, the bugs were a non-issue.
Front to back, top to bottom, a wonderful vacation!! We'll be back!!

Room Tip: Treehouses for the ultimate in privacy. The other units have an ocean view and are closer to the fo...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank Scott L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 19, 2013

Our early February 2013 Hamanasi experience can be summed up as -
1. easy worry free travel throughout
2. beautiful run resort
3. certified Staff with knowledge and grace
4. variety of exciting adventures covering the entire country
5. perfect weather (not guaranteed by Hamanasi but appreciated)
The adventure staff are Hamanasi employees all with certified dive and tour credentials. Each provided the necessary safety and specific sightseeing/historic information on our 5 trips. The on-site Staff made our wish their command.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank chic399
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 18, 2013

Our February stay at Hamanasi was wonderful. 85 degree days and 75 degree nights and no rain. Diving was excellent. The staff was over the top.
But the best part of the trip was getting to know the locals and hanging out in the Village. Completely safe and the people couldn't have been nicer. They are they type of people to give you the shirt off of their own backs!

Room Tip: We were in the deluxe tree house. It was outta this world.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Fadinbeauty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort

Address: Hopkins/Sittee River Road | Hopkins Village, Hopkins, Belize
Phone Number:
Location: Belize > Stann Creek > Hopkins
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Hopkins
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Hopkins
#1 Romantic Hotel in Hopkins
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Hopkins
#1 Family Hotel in Hopkins
Price Range: $170 - $320 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 23
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Experience the best of Belize on and offshore! Hamanasi is a secluded, casually elegant eco-resort. Unwind in spacious tree houses, beach front rooms and suites with AC, private porches and gorgeous hardwood furnishings. On property has a full service restaurant, bar, pool, lush gardens and a Gold Palm 5 star PADI dive facility. Onshore, explore Mayan ruins, Jaguar Preserve, caves, jungle rivers and rain forest waterfalls. All inclusive packages, Honeymoon and romance packages available. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Hamanasi Adventure And Dive Hotel Hopkins
Hamanasi Adventure And Dive Resort Belize/Hopkins

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