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A luxury retreat amidst nature awaits at San Ignacio Resort

While Belize is renowned for its underwater escapades, my decision to spend time in the heart of the Belizean jungle at the San Ignacio Resort Hotel revealed a whole new side of the country beyond its coastal charms.

Due to COVID restrictions, the usual air shuttle service was not available, leading to a scenic 3-hour drive from the airport to the San Ignacio Resort Hotel. This journey provided a unique opportunity to learn about Belize’s history, government, culture, and cuisine from a local driver. Surprisingly, English is the primary language in this Central American nation, making navigation a breeze for visitors.

Upon reaching the hotel, nestled on a hill just above the quaint town of San Ignacio within 17 acres of lush Belizean rainforest, I was impressed. The boutique hotel, now managed by the daughters of the original founder, has been meticulously renovated over the years to provide guests with a luxurious stay. The warm hospitality extended by the family creates a feeling of being welcomed as a friend into their home rather than just a guest.

Featuring five spacious suites along with 21 guest rooms offering unique views of the gardens and rainforest, the accommodations showcase local craftsmanship and artistry. Furnished in a modern yet authentically Belizean style, guests can opt for butler services to enhance their stay, whether for a cozy breakfast in bed or a relaxing evening with drinks on the balcony. The attentive butlers, like John, cater to guests’ preferences, adding a personalized touch to the experience.

Early mornings at the resort offer a delightful birdwatching spectacle with toucans soaring through the property. The resort’s private jungle serves as a haven for bird enthusiasts, with 119 bird species thriving in the area. Engaging in a tranquil forest bathing experience or exploring the medicinal plants along the resort’s trail adds a touch of adventure and relaxation to the stay.

Visitors can also witness the Green Iguana Conservation Project led by the knowledgeable Luis, who shares insights into these fascinating reptiles’ lives. The project not only helps in conserving iguanas but also educates guests on their significance in the local ecosystem. A visit to the resort’s restaurant, The Running W, offers a culinary feast blending Belizean flavors with Mediterranean influences, enjoyed in a picturesque rainforest setting.

For those seeking land adventures, the hotel offers personalized tours, ranging from cave tubing to Mayan temple visits, catering to various interests. While Belize’s beaches are alluring, delving into the jungle at San Ignacio Resort Hotel unveils a rich tapestry of culture and history, making it a must-visit destination for a unique and unforgettable experience.

Image Source: Trivago

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