Belize
Santa Elena

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  • Day6

    Grenzübertritt Mexiko-Belize

    October 7, 2021 in Belize ⋅ 🌧 28 °C

    Was für ein Tag! Zunächst liess uns unser mexikanischer Taxifahrer "Bladimir" (ja, russische Namen scheinen in Lateinamerika beliebt zu sein 😀🇷🇺🚕) im Hostel sitzen, anschliessend kamen wir in den "Genuss" belizianischer Corona-Willkür. Aber alles der Reihe nach. Denn glücklicherweise gibt es in Chetumal gefühlt mehr Taxis als Privatautos und es war für uns ein leichtes, einen Fahrer zu einem anständigen Preis zu organisieren. Dieser schien aber zum ersten Mal seit Corona eine Fahrt an die Grenze zu unternehmen und entsprechend nervös zu sein. Er musste mehrmals drehen und nachfragen, damit wir den Ausreiseprozess korrekt durchlaufen konnnten. Am Grenzposten zu Belize 🇱🇦 fing dann das mühsame Prozedere erst so richtig an:
    1. Anstehen, um zwei Formulare zu erhalten.
    2. Vorweisen einer Bestätigung der vorgängig für mind. 3 Nächte gebuchten Unterkunft in einem von der Behörde autorisierten Hotel (golden standard).
    3. Anstehen, um die ausgefüllten Formulare kontrollieren zu lassen.
    4. Mit den Formularen bei einem anderen Schalter anstehen, damit ein Grenzbeamter die vorgängig gemessene Körpertemperatur eintragen kann.
    Die Einreiseprozedur war damit aber noch lange nicht abgeschlossen und ehe wir uns zur nächsten Station aufmachen konnten, informierte uns der Herr im grünen Hemd, dass wir nur mit einem dazu befugten Taxi nach Belize City reisen durften. Und dies für sage und schreibe 180 USD 💵 (!!!). Nichts mit günstig und auch die vorgängig in Erfahrung gebrachten Infos zum Bustransfer nach Belize City waren für die Katz. Tja. Das war wohl definitiv Beamtenwillkür. Denn im offiziellen Webportal stand nichts dergleichen. Da aber auch die anderen Touris den selben Betrag berappen mussten, gab es keine andere Möglichkeit (u.a. ein Spanier, zwei britische Ex-Soldaten und eine mexikanische Oma mussten gleich viel bezahlen). Ach ja: Taxi-Sharing war verboten. Welcome to Belize and enjoy your stay. Ja genau - vielen Dank😡
    Nun gut und weiter im Takt. An der nächsten Station mussten wir ebenfalls dreimal anstehen, um den Antigen-Test zu machen (obligatorisch auch für geimpfte Personen) . Dafür wurden 50 USD pro Person kassiert. Der anschliessende Test wurde unkompliziert im Freien durchgeführt🤧. Am dritten Schalter mussten wir schliesslich anstehen, damit ein Beamter nochmals verifizieren konnte (Stempel von Health-Care-Behörde), dass das Testergebnis negativ war (come on...). Die dritte und letzte Station war schliesslich die eigentliche "Migration". Sprich: Anstehen für Zertifikatskontrolle, dann an den nächsten Schalter zur Passkontrolle und danach weiter zur Gepäckkontrolle. Insgesamt benötigten wir fast 2.5 Stunden für die Ausreise aus Mexiko und die Einreise nach Belize. Und dies bei gerade mal knapp 15 Personen, welche vor resp. mit uns unterwegs waren. Wie lange ein solcher Übertritt in der Rush Hour dauert, wollten wir uns gar nicht ausmalen.
    Anyway. Jetzt waren wir immerhin "drüben" und die Reise nach Belize City sowie die Bootsfahrt nach Caye Caulker waren sehr angenehm. Das Beste: auf dieser paradisischen Insel haben wir eine eigene, sehr liebevoll ausgestattete Holz-Cabaña direkt am Strand 😎🏝🦀.
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    Romy Meier

    Mensch Dani und Martina.. fing ja super an. Ich hoffe dass es jetzt leichter für euch ist. Einen lieben Gruss, auch von Muetti 😘

    10/12/21Reply
    Hugo Meier

    Abenteuer pur, spannend! Lieber Gruss Anita&Hugo

    10/14/21Reply
     
  • Day633

    Crossing da border

    September 23, 2021 in Mexico ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

    Da recipe:

    There is a public bus from Belize city until Corozal for 10B$.

    From there you need to take a taxi to the Belizean border. It is 30 respectively 25B$ (negotiate)… try to share it with other people. At the border you pay 40B$ exit fees.

    From there you are not allowed to walk to the Mexican border. So you need to take a second taxi which costs approx. 10B$.

    The taxi does not bring you to the migration of México you are dropped off earlier. Where you show your passport to some random police officers and then you have to take a third taxi to the real migration. You are not allowed to walk this way either. So you are going to spend another 10B$.

    At the migration office you pay your 31 US$ or 596 MX$ entrance fees to get into México and there you finally get your entry stamp.

    Don’t even try to walk from the Mexican migration to the highway it’s not allowed and you need to take a fourth taxi they charge you between 200 to 350 MX$ depends on how many people you are and how good your haggling skills are.

    You finally arrive in Chentumal where you try to withdraw money and then you recognize that each bank has a different service fee from 30 to 180 MX$. Try them all.
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    Try ban copple (atm), it's only 18 (maybe less) [Stefanie]

    9/26/21Reply
    Pascal Steck

    Thanks for the tip 🙂

    9/26/21Reply
     
  • Day59

    Bacalar!

    April 4 in Belize ⋅ 🌙 77 °F

    We made it to Bacalar this morning. Jasper and I shared excellent, top notch stories the whole 2.5 hour drive south. I really enjoyed talking to him about travel, relationships, sexuality, and living in Mexico. He needed to go to the border to extend his visa, which had expired a couple of days ago. He is from Canada and has been living in Mexico for 6 years full time on a tourist visa. He mentioned his friend Suzanna was bicycling from Tulum to Panama and we would probably pass her at some point. Sweet!

    Sure enough, we saw her and he asked if I would stop and we could cheer her on. Of course I loved this idea. We pulled off to the side, got out and began waving for her. When she reached us she was a negative dramatic mess. Not a single nice word came out of her mouth and she just enthusiastically bitched about her situation of being on a bike during the hottest part of the day because her free breakfast at the hostel was. ot ready early enough for her to leave before 11am. Just one of the things... I was over this interaction 45 seconds into it. I recognized this vibe. It was not a good one, it was dark and sucky. Like energy vampire sucky. I wanted to leave immediately as she just kept barking nasty things at us and complaining about everything possible. She asked if we could attach her bike to the outside of my rental car. I told her no, it would fuck up the car and there is no room inside it. One of her main complaints was that she had too much stuff on her bike that she didn't need. Just to try and end this interaction I offered to take her bags to bacalar and she could retrieve them there. She immediately got happier and I was relieved to see her relieved and also wanted to fucking go. So we went on down the road and left crazy Suzanna to ride her bicycle.

    When we got into town, I checked into my hostel at the Yak Lake House, secured my belongings in the dorm room, and we headed for the border. I wanted to go to Belize to get my passport stamped. It was a Circus. The first border crossing woman wanted 5000 pesos from him! That's around $250 usd. He said "No way!" and we went to the other border crossing. They would not allow us to drive through, so we parked the car and Jasper did all the talking in Spanish. Apparently this wad not the border to Belize, it was the border into what they call the "Free Zone" between Mexico and Belize, where you can buy all sorts of things super cheap and tax free, without technically crossing into either Mexico or Belize. It was confusing, very very hot and sunny, and we walked, forever, through this zone. I almost gave up so many times and said "fuck it! Its not worth it!" but we kept getting closer and closer to my goal.. The sun was just beating the life out of us. I left all my belongings in the car except passport and phone, because it looked like we were right there, when we actually ended up walking probably 3 miles. Finally, we came upon another checkpoint. It was a Belizean checkpoint, so I got to do some talking finally, as Belize is an English speaking country. I asked for a passport stamp and the super nice chubby man with the happiest smile told me he's not the guy, and told us it's about another mile to the border. So we hailed a dirt bike taxi that looked kind of like a pedi cab for 80 pesos to take us there and back. We were so relieved to not be walking any longer!!!! I had my passport and was all ready to get it stamped. When I told the border guy that I just wanted to have my passport stamped he was a big dick. He started telling me all these lies about how they don't let people into Belize for one day, there is a minimum of 3 days. If they come for less than 3 days it has to be to visit family, and they confirm it by calling the family. What a load of shit. We went back and forth for a while and I eventually got my passport back and turned to leave, saying, "Fuck your country." Not my finest moment but I got away with it, and we walked back to our motorbike taxi and rode back to the car. Jasper gave up on fixing his visa for the day and I drove us back to bacalar, exhausted.

    We were absolutely starving, and went to a restaurant next to my hostel called LA Playita. It was absolutely delicious, I had a mango mezcal or two, and the chicken fajita pitas. Jasper was kind enough to buy my meal as a thank you for bringing him to the area. After dinner it was getting dark so I drove around scouting for places to shoot. and Jasper walked around to find a place to sleep. I didn't see much in the way of cool backdrops for photos, so resolved to start the day shooting at the hostel on the water.

    My bunk mates were two drunk girls who were throwing up in the bathroom but still very sweet, and a gorgeous model looking girl who didn't say much, and a party animal guy who I called, "Mr. No key," because he could never find his key to the room so always kept it unlocked. It's a beautiful hostel right on the water and they have rental kayaks and SUPs. Just gorgeous. I could stay here to do a retreat and get some work done another time. Buenas Noches until tomorrow!
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  • Day17

    Laguna Milagros

    February 20, 2020 in Mexico ⋅ ⛅ 29 °C

    Heute ging es spontan nach dem Frühstück in Richtung Laguna Milagros. Die nur 15mn entfernte Lagune ist relativ leicht zu erreichen. Von der Hauptstraße wo unser collectivo uns abstetzt sind ist es nur noch eine gerade Linie durch das Dorf Huay-Pix zu laufen.
    Um die Lagune gibt es ein paar Bars, restaurants und Cabañas... Dennoch ist es heute sehr ruhig und wir sind die einzigen Besucher.
    Das Wasser ist türkis und bei dem aktuellen Wetter sehr erfrischend.
    Als snack gab es Michelada* und Guacamole.

    *Michelada ist ein typisch mexikanisches Getränk, das auf der Grundlage von Bier zubereitet wird, das mit Limettensaft, Salz und einer Sauce zum Würzen ergänzt wird, bei der es sich um eine scharfe Sauce aus Chilischoten handeln kann, die eventuell mit Tomatensaft gemischt wird.
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    Thomas Plautz

    Möchte gerne mit Dir tauschen Toni und auch in,s Wasser springen. Gruß Thomas

    2/26/20Reply
     
  • Day61

    Never Driving to Belize again.

    April 6 in Belize ⋅ 🌙 81 °F

    Today I woke up before the Crack of dawn, probably because I went to sleep so very early, trying to recover from my Energy Vampire. I messed with photos on the phone a bit more and then ventured out of the hostel to find a nice place to watch the sunrise. I found it less than 1/4 mile up the street, there was an open fence that looked like some kind of a resort/restaurant situation. There was a gorgeous deck at the end of the dock that was old and looked like it may fall in at any given moment. It was perfect. I walked out and took a time-lapse of the sunrise on the gopro and photos on my phone. I was alone and it was peaceful. I was still recharging my emotional energy. I called my dad and we chatted for a while, I love his voice. I have an irrational fear of my parents dying. I just want to savor all the time we get to share in this life because I know I will miss them terribly when they're gone. 💔

    I decided to remove all contraband from my car and give Belize another try. I also wanted to check out the free zone for shopping to see if there were any bracelets there! The drive seemed shorter this time, but there were still infinite checkpoints. I didn't find much in the free zone, just some funky socks for Gayland, and a notebook for me for travel notes and purchasing notes so I can keep better track of what I'm spending. It reminded me a bit of canal street in that the streets are lined with stores selling knock off designer shit and everything looks like it just got unpacked out of a shipping container from China. It was an experience.

    In order to drive into Belize, you have to give up your Mexican Visa, Pay an entry fee, Have your vehicle sterilized which costs a fee, either get a covid test for $50us or have a vaccine card-I used my fake one and it worked.🤫 You also have to get a passport stamp for your vehicle which costs a fee, if you will be in Belize longer than 24 hours you must purchase Belizean insurance.

    Whew, I did flips through all these hoops for them and entered Belize in my Mexican rental car without permission from the insurance company.. with a fake vaccine. Rebel status for sure. I won't be doing those things ever again. Too stressful. Belize at the border is literally nothing to write home about. It's like farm land and anywhere on Google Maps that says there is a business is nowhere to be found. I was trying to at least eat some lunch somewhere, but I saw not a single place of business that I felt like I would survive eating inside of. So I took photos of some cool signs and got the hell back to the Mexico border...

    In order to leave Belize and enter Mexico, you must pay an exit fee, get your vehicle stamp cancelled out of your passport, and then pay another visa fee at the Mexico border. Oh and fun fact I did not know until I did all of this: You only get 7 days free in Mexico when you come by land, if you stay longer you have to pay a bunch more tax, so I just switched my flight to 2 days sooner. My work here is done anyways. The shoots are done and I have tons of bracelets, or pulseras as they say.

    What a headache!

    When I returned to the hostel they were in the middle of getting set up for the neon party Yak was hosting. I had no interest or energy in participating. It was mostly like 20 year-olds at the hostel and I was tired from getting fucked like a house cat let loose in the streets of Tijuana. It tool hours to leave and re enter Mexico for no more than an hour spent in Belize. I may have even still been recharging.

    I took myself back to La Playita for dinner and had a lovely salad with avocado, strawberries, and goat cheese balls rolled in sesame seeds. Of course I had a couple of their gorgeous Cocktails as well.

    I'm about to work on the photos until I crash out again! Adios!
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  • Day2

    Laguna Milagros en Huai-Pix

    October 23, 2021 in Mexico ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

    Pasamos el día y nos quedamos a dormir en un camping. Hermoso sitio para disfrutar del lago. Nos cobraron 200p por aparcar aqui, las instalaciones no fueron para nada buenas...
    A seguir ruta! 🙌🏼☀️

  • Day16

    Grenzübergang Belize

    October 25, 2014 in Belize ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

    War en bissle komisch... Musste 25US-Dollar zahlen. Dem Holländer paar kam das auch komisch vor. Habe nach Quittung gefragt, hab ich nicht bekommen... Abba mit grenzpolizisten lässt sich nur schwer diskutieren...(wohlgemerkt alles in der Nacht!) dann noch taschenkontrolle Sitz jetzt wieder im eiskalten Bus....)Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Santa Elena, Zona Libre de Belice