Belize: Placencia – Photo Essay of Another Paradise Lost
Descending the Cairo Side – a novel of the traveling life
Available as an e-book on Amazon.com
When I first traveled to Placencia in southern Belize, transport was difficult. The first leg involved a public bus that passed by way of Belmopan through some of the most atrocious roads known in the former British Empire. From there we switched vehicles for the ride to Stan Creek, now known as Dangriga, and then made our way to Mango Creek, from where one could catch a dugout across the lagoon to the peninsula upon which Placencia is located.
1) Approaching the village from the lagoon
The fishing vessels at the time were still powered mostly by sail, with the occasional dugout/outboard arrangement, and locals would travel 15 nautical miles offshore to the reefs where the fishing was good. The village had a processing plant for conchs, and the women who shelled the creatures often found gorgeous conch pearls, which they would sell for a pittance.
2) Sailing vessel, probably a fishing boat
At the time of my visit, there were no hotels, save the Rum Point Inn, an eclectic series of round bungalows that boasted a first-class bar and tennis court. The American owner seemed quite content with his lot in life.
Now, of course, hotels abound and tourists have the run of the place. I always wonder, am I partly to blame for helping to discover this jewel of the western Caribbean. I understand most people visit the village now courtesy of the recently built airstrip.
But the world moves on, and we have to move with progress whether we approve of it or not.
4) Our roommate Bob performing his morning ablutions in front of the beach house
4.5) Local kids playing on the beach in front of our house
6) Village life
7) The beach north of the village. Highway, condos, airport access? I wonder what goes on there now
8) Garifuna (mixed Native American and African ethinc group) village north of Placencia. Looks like iguanas are on the menu for lunch
9) Garifuna house
10) Bamboo chicken, anyone?