Lobster Season in Belize

Our favorite time of year is just around the corner, LOBSTER SEASON!

Lobster season in Belize opens on June 15th every year and closes on February 15th. There is so much lobster available during the summers here that prices for this tasty treat are at their absolute lowest. In honor of our favorite time of year, we’ve put together a few fun facts to honor this scrumptious sea creature.

Spiney-Lobster-Belize1. The lobster we’re discussing are scientifically known as Panulirus Argus and they are the only lobster that is regulated in Belize.

Spiney Lobster BelizeIn Belize, we prefer to call it by a less scientific name, we call it lobster or crayfish. Elsewhere it goes by the name warm water spiny lobster, rock lobster or Caribbean lobster to distinguish it from its larger and better-known cousin found in the deep cold waters off Canada and the northeastern United States. But whatever you call this elusive creature its importance to the economy of Belize cannot be overstated.

2. The Caribbean Spiny lobster takes 3-5 years to mature and can reach a maximum length of two feet, although sometimes they look a lot bigger underwater to the inexperienced eye!

Because the lobster migrates, it’s difficult to get accurate population counts but one thing is for sure: their numbers are less than they used to be! For this reason Belize has a season and size limit for lobsters and it’s based on their mating/spawning season. And the minimum size is a 4 ounce tail.

Lobster-Traps-Belize3. Capturing the lobsters isn’t as easy as you might think.

How does on go about catching one of these tasty creatures? Lobster diving requires at least two people: one person to drive the boat and one person to jump into the water, hold their breath, dive down to the lobster shades, pick up the lobster by hand, swim it to the surface, and chuck the terrified lobster into the bottom of the boat. Then repeat. Hundreds of times.

4. Every year on the island of Ambergris Caye there is a huge celebration honoring lobster season called the San Pedro Lobsterfest.

The San Pedro Lobster Festival is an annual event that celebrates the reopening of lobster season in Belize. The first festival was held in 2007 with a week of nightly events leading up to one epic block party. Over the past 10 years the festival has evolved into a 10 day festival filled with over 20 great activities and incredible lobster themed foods! The 10th annual San Pedro Lobster Festival kicking off on Wednesday, June 15th, 2016! Voted #1 Festival in Belize!

As if you needed another reason, this festival is an ideal time to head to Belize. You can tell your friends back home you had so much freshly prepared lobster in Belize you won’t go near a Red Lobster joint in a while!

What’s your favorite lobster dish? Tell us in the comments below!

The Beaches of Ambergris Caye, Belize

While many would argue the best thing about Ambergris Caye is the gorgeous barrier reef, the snorkeling and the water sports, we’d like to brag about the beautiful beaches that outline our little island paradise. Ambergris Caye is Belize’s tourism superstar, combining the laidback with the sophisticated for a chic-barefoot elegance vibe. The largest town on the caye is San Pedro, which just so happens to be where Caribbean Villas is located.

BelizeBeachBelize’s entire coastline is home to approximately 191 miles of the magnificent Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, the largest reef in the northern hemisphere. The location of the coral reef is in direct correlation to our shoreline on the island, and greatly impacts our beaches.

On Ambergris Caye, the entire coastline is lined by white coral sand beaches. The shallow water right off the beach is a montage of sea grass beds and patches of sandy areas. On some beaches, you’ll find mostly sand which makes them great for swimming, and in other areas, you’ll find mostly sea grass. However, it’s important to keep in mind that sea grass beds are very important fish nurseries and they are responsible for the diversity and abundance of fishes you see when fishing our flats and snorkeling Belize’s Barrier Reef! But aside from the patches of sea grass beds, the beaches are white, the coconut trees are green and the crystal clear water shimmers in the sunlight with continuous hues of blue, green and turquoise.

Belize_San_Pedro_Ambergris_Caye_Caribbean_Villas_View_BeachAs beautiful as these stretches of the sand are, most beachgoers find the sand upstaged by the vivid turquoise blue of the sea. Many of the waters directly off the best beaches are choked with sea grass and while sea grass is ecologically vital, it creates less than optimum conditions for swimming. Select resorts have been permitted to remove the sea grass and some of the best beaches lie directly in front of the swankier resorts. All beaches on Belize are public, so travelers shouldn’t feel intimidated about staking their spot on the sand.

One of the best beaches on Ambergris Caye is the beach at Caribbean Villas. We offer one of the largest natural beaches on the island without a sea wall blocking your access to our amazing waters. If you’re ready to experience the paradise that is Ambergris Caye, Belize, we welcome you to vacation with us! For reservations, call 1-800-213-8347 (U.S.), (501) 226-2715 (Belize) or click here! Our dedicated staff is eager to assist you in any way.

Swimming in Shark Ray Alley in Ambergris Caye, Belize

SharkRayAlleyIf you’ve ever wanted to swim with sharks and rays, Shark Ray Alley off the coast of Ambergris Caye in Belize is the place to do it. Belize is world famous for scuba diving, and going out to the Blue Hole is an experience that is out of this world, but swimming with the nurse sharks and rays is one of the most thrilling experiences you’ll ever have in your entire life. Guaranteed!

The nurse sharks seem to love human interaction and the rays seemingly welcome snorkelers as they swim towards them to touch their incredible wingspan. Attracted for years by fisherman cleaning their catch, Shark Ray Alley has plenty of sharks and rays still rushing towards boats in hopes of catching a few fresh catch scraps. The nurse sharks and stingrays are definitely the main attractions of the spot. Shark feeding was common for many years and has made the sharks familiar with a human presence.

SnorkelBelize As soon as the boat arrives, the stingrays and sharks are attracted by the noise of the engine and they begin to swim toward the boat. We suggest hopping into the water as quickly as possible to make the most of the experience. You only need to put your head under the water to see the sharks and stingrays coming and going between the boats. You can easily get close to them, but they will swim away if you make any sudden gestures. Some stingrays are quite “tactile”, but don’t forget that they do have a stinger that can inflict serious injuries.

The reef is filled with not only sharks and rays, but colorful fish from Barracuda to clown fish and even an occasional sea turtle – all living in balance and harmony beneath the sea. Here and there, you will also see horse-eye jack, Bermuda chub, smooth trunkfish and small barracudas moving above the seagrass.

This is a very popular spot at certain times of day, so watch out for the boats and the other snorkelers. The water is shallow and generally calm and clear, which makes it an ideal spot for children and beginners who are looking for an experience of a lifetime.

Ambergris Caye – The Best Island in the World

Over the last several years, Ambergris Caye has received worldwide attention for being one of the best vacation islands in the world. Just a quarter of a mile from our coast is the second largest barrier reef, making the island a hot spot snorkelers & scuba divers alike. But beyond the water sports, what makes Ambergris Caye such a popular tourist destination? We’ve rounded up our favorite five things about Ambergris Caye, Belize.

1. No shoes, no shirt, no problem.

Many of the streets in Ambergris Caye are made of sand, making trekking around barefoot the thing to do. Our island has a relaxed, come as you are vibe & after a long day at the beach, many are shirtless & shoeless. Restaurants, bars & shops could care less. On Ambergris Caye, we truly believe in “no shoes, no shirt, NO PROBLEM!”

2. Our food is legit.

You can’t find a McDonalds, Burger King, Starbucks or KFC in the entire     country of Belize! Most of the food you find on the island is local & prepared fresh. If you’re a foodie, Ambergris Caye is definitely the place for you. Many cultures coexist here guaranteeing you will find gourmet meals that will intrigue your palate. Being a maritime state, Belize enjoys a bounty of seafood & most restaurants will be happy to serve up your favorite lobster, sea bass, shrimp, conch, swordfish and fish fillet. Fresh fruit and vegetables abound in the interior and are shipped daily to all areas of the country – anything from papayas, mangoes, kiwi fruit, watermelon, melons, soursop and pineapples.


3. The beaches are incredible.

Our beaches are incredibly beautiful & mostly uncrowded. The water is crystal clear & boast some of the most intense turquoises you’ve ever seen. And thanks to the barrier reef, our waves rarely swell above a few inches, making our waters flat & calm most of the time.


4. The Weather.

Belize is in the tropics, and of course the weather is warm almost year round making for an ideal vacation. The average annual temperature is 84F (29C). It can get hot in the summer, but that’s why we have the best beaches and endless water activities.

5. Ambergris Caye is a mini melting pot.

The passion and vitality of Latin America co-exists alongside the comforts & most of amenities of the Western world. Overlaying it all is the laid-back and welcoming vibe of the Caribbean.

What are you waiting for? Plan your Belize vacation today!

Garifuna Queens at Caribbean Villas!

We were so honored to host the Garifuna Queens for the 31st Annual Garifuna Convention. Gwen Nunez Gonzalez, National Secretary of the Garifuna Council had nothing but great things to say about her stay at Caribbean Villas: “Thanks to the Management and Staff of Caribbean Villas for making our stay memorable. We were treated with class and love. The rooms are well kept, clean and beautiful. Every employee embraced us and made the experience joyful, from the front desk to the beach area. We are still talking about our stay and comfortable beds and fresh linens. Caribbean Villas is a paradise within a town. Seremein (thanks). Your welcoming culture is shared by all your employees, which is exceptional. I encourage visitors to stay at Caribbean Villas and receive Belize-class treatment. One love from Gwen Nunez Gonzalez, National Secretary, National Garifuna Council.”