Sea Dreams’ Hotel’s magical Banyan Tree uprooted by Hurricane Earl – August 3, 2016. Photo courtesy of Purple Passion Beauty Studio, Caye Caulker.
On the night of August 3, 2016, a hurricane hit one of my absolute favorite places and homes on earth: Belize.
What was predicted as Tropical Storm Earl–Belize’s National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) did a great job of monitoring and advising people to evacuate–quickly evolved into a category 1 hurricane. And it made its way directly for the Jewel, furiously battering Caye Caulker and Ambergris Caye on its way toward Belize City and inland Cayo. With winds of up to 80mph, some long time residents said it was the longest lasting hurricane they’d ever seen and survived in Belize–up to six hours–and that it even had the movements of a tornado at times. A category 1 that felt more like a 2.
Belize City fared the worst with flooding and destroyed homes, while many of my friends and local tourism businesses on Caye Caulker and San Pedro saw their hard work shattered to the ground. No more Palapa Bar, or EZ Boy Tours’ shack (my favorite snorkeling company in Caye Caulker), and a seriously damaged Split. Sea Dreams Hotel, another favorite and great friends of mine, saw their gorgeous, giant banyan tree uprooted. It was the magical centerpiece of this small, lovely seafront property. These couple of post-Earl photos of Caye Caulker are courtesy of >>Continue reading »
Over the next few days, as I finally wrap up my second edition of Moon Belize (hurrah! due out November 2015), I thought I would share images captured along my latest travels around Belize, since September, that somehow never made the blog.
One such series of photos are portraits of some of my favorite local tour guides. They are, in my humble opinion, the unsung heroes of Belize’s tourism industry. They keep me abreast of the latest in their areas every year and help me complete my research while making it fun in the process. And many times, behind the scenes, they’re carrying my bags while I shoot, hike, snorkel, take notes, and completing a dozen other tasks.
Meet Captain Ian Forte of EZ Boy Tours–a native of Caye Caulker, working for a