Belize – Climate and Weather

Belize – Climate and Weather

Climate and Seasons

Belize is a subtropical country in the Northern Hemisphere. Generally speaking, its weather conditions can be described as hot and humid. But the lay of the land creates a range of microclimates. Local weather conditions depend as much on altitude as on seasonal variation.

Conventionally, its seasons are labelled ‘dry’ or ‘wet’, but this simplistic scheme can be misleading.

Dry season

The ‘dry’ season runs from about late December to April. The temperatures are generally pleasant and slightly lower than during the wet season. Touristically, this is Belize’s high season. It coincides with the Christmas holidays, spring break, and Holy Week – a busy and expensive time to travel.

Rainy season

The rainy season runs from about May to November/December. At this time, it is often sunny during the day but hot and muggy, and thunderclouds build up in the late afternoon. Rainfall tends to be heavier and more prolonged than during the dry season.

The tourist board has ‘rebranded’ the wet season as the Green Season, which is actually fitting. Once the rains come, the thirsty landscape turns lush and verdant again.


Hurricanes often pass Belize, making landfall further north. But occasionally, it does get a direct hit. When it does, the effects are usually felt throughout the country. Heavy storms and torrential downpours even occur far inland. Thankfully, they are rare events. Since records began in 1851, Belize has only been hit by 4 category 5 hurricanes. Statistically, August and October see the heaviest storms, but occasionally they can occur as early as June.

Average Temperatures

The average maximum temperature ranges between 28 -31 °C, and minimum temperatures range from 19 to 24 °C. Humidity is highest in November, but October sees the most rainfall.

In the Cayes, a light breeze makes the heat and humidity easier to deal with, even during the wet season. But, when a storm blows in, everybody has to leave.

Inland, in the Maya Mountains, temperatures are lower, particularly at night.

What is the BEST time to travel to Belize?

That depends on what you want to do. Belize is a year-round destination, but water activities like sea-kayaking are not available during the Green Season due to frequent thunderstorms and choppy waters.

How to get to Belize ?

How to get to Belize ?

Getting to Belize by Air

Most people arrive in Belize by air. For a small country, Belize is amazingly well-connected – at least with North American destinations. Its tiny international airport (Philip Goldson International Airport, BZE), receives international flights from the USA, Canada, Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras and Panama.

The airport is only a short drive from the centre of Belize City (about 20 minutes) but there are no bus services.
Some domestic flights also depart from the international airport, but others leave from the domestic airport (Belize City Municipal Airport, TZE), which is located almost in Belize City itself.

International visitors must pay a departure tax when departing from BZE, but sometimes this fee is already included in your ticket price. Do check closely.


Getting to Belize From By Road

You can enter Belize from Mexico at the southern Yucatan border crossing of Chetumal. There are international bus services between the two countries, but services and schedules change frequently.


Another option is to travel to Belize from Guatemala. The border crossing is at Melchor de Mencos / Benque Viejo del Carmen in the Cajo District. This is a good option when combining a visit to Tikal or Flores with a trip to Belize. Private transfers are available, and we can organize complete packages that cover both countries, according to your schedule. (Drop us a line at info @

A public bus also connects the two countries.


Discover the Ancient Maya World

In the southern tip of Mexico, a region known as the Yucatan peninsula lies the heartland of the ancient Maya civilization.

There are numerous archeological sites, some well excavated, like Chichen Itza, some far more obscure, and overgrown that have been reabsorbed into the jungle.

Less well known is the fact that the tiny country of Belize is also rich with fascinating Maya sites:

Altun Ha

Of these, Altun Ha, near Belize city, is perhaps the most accessible. Archeologists believe it to have been used as a trading city as there is no evidence that human sacrifice, which is a marker for ceremonial sites. On the other hand, many items have been found there that evidently did not originate at the site: e.g. a very large carved head made of jade, and obsidian tools. These could only have gotten there by trade.


Lamanai, BelizeThe most important ceremonial center of the Belizean Maya world is thought to have been Lamanai. This impressive site is a bit harder to reach. The best way to get there is by car and boat, traveling on the New River. Lamanai is an extensive site but remains largely overgrown. Only the largest structures have been excavated.

Lamanai is said to have been inhabited for 3000 years. It was abandoned when the Spaniards arrived. To gain control over the local population they built a couple of churches on this sacred site, which ‘ruined’ the site for ceremonial purposes as far as the Maya people were concerned. And so they burnt them down and left the site.

When the British came they created a sugar plantation and processing mill at this site. That did not last either as the rum, a by-product of sugar production proved too tempting. The site was abandoned once again. Due to this checkered history, Lamanai is the only Maya site that has remains from three different eras and civilizations.

It is possible to visit Lamanai on a long day trip from Belize City. But it is much better to stay at Lamanai Outlook Post for a few days and discover this Belizean outback in more depth. Both the ruins and the lagoons near the lodge are considered premier birding spots in Belize.

The best known Maya sites in Belize are in the far west of the country, in the Cayo district, close to the Guatemalan border.


Xunantunich Maya Tour‘Xunantunich’ means ‘stone maiden’. It is a well-excavated site and the pride of Belizean archeology. Oddly, though, there is not much known about this site. It is thought that it was a kind of control post that checked traffic and trade coming in from the Tikal region in Guatemala.

Cahal Pech

This is a small site and less impressive than Xunantunich. But both are worth a visit if you are staying at one of the nearby jungle lodges, such as Table Rock Lodge. And it is certainly also worth stopping by if you are passing through on your way to Tikal,  arguable the most stunning of all the Maya sites in the region.

Visiting the Cayo region in Belize is highly recommended. The area is very different from coastal Belize. The western border of Belize is formed by the Maya Mountains, a chain of rainforest draped limestone mountains, that are riddled with caves. It is a great place for anyone with a little bit of ‘Indiana Jones blood’ in them. Spelunking is a real thrill here.

Some caves contain Maya artifacts. The Mayans believed that the dead return to the earth’s womb in the underworld, from which they eventually are reborn. The underworld cave systems provided an actual place in which the mythology could be played out.

For anyone interested in spelunking, by far the best place to stay in Caves Branch Lodge,  which offers a whole range of exciting activities, but specializes in caving adventures. With its range of accommodations, from simple jungle cabanas to luxury tree-houses, the lodge has a unique and very cool style and excellent guides. The lodge is especially suitable for adventure-loving families.


CaracolDeep in the ‘Mountain Pine Ridge Reserve’. the real pearl of Belizean Maya ruins lies hidden: Caracol. Archeologists at one point thought that Caracol was a rival city to Tikal, almost equal in size. It is hard to know exactly how big it actually is since much of it remains unexcavated.

Nevertheless, with an area of at least 88sqkm, it is certainly the most extensive and important site in Belize. So far, Archeologists have been able to mark some 36000 structures. Although, most of them are little more than overgrown bumps. The largest structures are the massive Canaa Temple and a huge Acropolis. There are also some well-preserved stelae.

Getting there is quite an adventure as it is located in a very remote area. It is very interesting for nature lovers, as the environment changes dramatically in the Mountain Pine Ridge Reserve thus providing a wide range of different habitats for different species. Considering the long and arduous journey to get there it is best to stay at a lodge in the area, such as the Hidden Valley Lodge.

For real Maya aficionados, a stay at Pook’s Hill Lodge would be a special treat, since it is nestled within the ancient walls of an ancient Maya settlement. Not much of it is exposed, but structures and walls can be seen throughout the property and the atmosphere there is very special – a hidden gem.

On to Tikal


Tikal – Temple of the Jaguar

If you want to venture on, into Guatemala to visit the famous Tikal Ruins, many of the lodges offer this as a day trip. However, it is quite a journey and the site itself is so large that a day-trip hardly does it justice. Some lodges also offer overnight packages with a stay just outside Tikal Archeological Park. This is by far the better option.

It is also possible to go to Tikal on your own, but it is quite complicated as there are no direct buses. The best option is to fly from Belize City to Flores and then take a taxi or shuttle bus, or to take a bus from Belize City, if it is running.

If you don’t have much time going with an organised tour is the easiest, fastest and safest option.