We decided to catch a boat from Guatemala to Belize as it is through 30 miles of some of the most protected ocean in the world. All those barrier reefs and that. Jason had also convinced Claire of the benefits of taking boats to break up bus time and make for a more pleasant journey.
This is our boat... looks fair enough. It is only a 90 minute ride to Belize and it looks pretty fast if a little small. All the locals fought for a back seat leaving us in the front and we wondered why.
While waiting, Jason tries to get some kip. In the background is a lady singing prayers and quoting the bible over a loudhailer... we didn't realise she was telling those on the boat that now would be a good time to repent as the seas were bad that day and there was a small boat warning. She was trying to warn us that we might not make it to Belize!
The boat trip was one of the worst experiences of our lives. We should have been bothered when we saw the captain in 'head to toe' waterproofs. The locals at the back had chosen seats there, to prevent them from the sporadic jerking movement at the front. By the time we arrived we were soaked, Claire had gone quite hysterical (not sure if she was laughing or crying at times), and bruised all over but glad to be alive.
We even manage to wind-up the rather laid back Belizian customs people by getting off the boat too quickly... there was no way we could spend any longer than necessary on that boat.
We got to Punta Gorda and thought it didn't really look like a great place to hang out. So we caught a small plane up to Placencia. We were bedraggled, worn out travellers, who still hadn't recovered from the morning boat ride.
It was worth the plane ride to ride over the Cayes of Belize. Belizes coastline faces out to the second biggest barrier reef in the world resulting in many little Cayes all off the coast. These cayes continue for over 250 kilometers.
Claire was still wet from the boat ride and not quite with it. As the Cessna Caravan (plane) was turning around Claire thought she needed to duck to miss the wings that were at least 5 metres away from her. This was much to the amusement of the airport staff.