Published On: Fri, Dec 13th, 2019

Belize Botanic Gardens in Cayo District

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Located in western Belize’s Cayo District near the border with Guatemala, the Belize Botanic Gardens started as a private hobby by Ken and Judy duPlooy, who bought the adjacent land in 1988 in order to start an eco-lodge and raise their family. DuPlooy’s Jungle Lodge soon grew to attract ecotourists interested in birdwatching, Belize’s Mayan ruins, kayaking, horseback riding. and hiking in Belize’s lush interior rainforest.

Overview of the Belize Botanic Gardens

The main goal of the Belize Botanic Gardens is to encourage sustainable agriculture, maintain conservation collections and engage in environmental education. The plantings include a variety of native and exotic fruits, palms, hardwoods, and ornamental and medicinal plants. Don’t miss the orchid house, which contains a collection of tropical orchids, including, of course, Belize’s national flower, the black orchid.

Hiking Trails at the Belize Botanic Gardens

Belize Botanic Gardens in Cayo District

Two miles of trails wind though a variety of habitats. Visitors can walk with guides or on their own (booklets for self-guided tours are available). Or they can see the gardens on horseback or via a driving tour. Don’t miss a climb up the old fire tower, from which there is a panoramic view of the property, the river, and the surrounding hills.

Adding to the interest is the Macal River, which flows through the property, the surrounding Maya Mountain foothills, and nearby Mayan archaeological sites, which include Chaa Creek, Cahal Pech, and Xunantunich.

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