Belize, 2014 - Big Falls, 1st to 2nd Feb


Article Index
Belize, 2014
Getting to Hopkins, 24th to 25th Jan
Around Hopkins 26th January
Around Hopkins, 27th January
Around Hopkins, 28th January
San Ignacio and Caraco, 28th to 29th January
Around San Ignacio, 30th January
The Hummingbird Highway and Hopkins, 31st Jan
Big Falls, 1st to 2nd Feb
Big Falls, 3rd Feb
Big Falls and Placencia, 4th Feb
Hopkins and the Coastal Road, 5th Feb
Belize Zoo, 6th Feb
Coastal Highway and Hopkins, 7th Feb
Going Home and Highlights
All Pages


Big Falls (1st and 2nd February)

We woke up early next morning, booked our return flights to Belize City through Emma at Alternate Adventures, and picked up the bikes again. After stopping at Tina's Restaurant for a lunch of pigtails (where we were served by Tina's sister Ruth, another friendly lady and great cook), we headed south turning off the road at Big Falls village, and following signs for the Lodge at Big Falls. I think we all vowed to stay there no matter what the cost when we first saw it. We booked two cabanas between us, dropped our stuff off, grabbed the car inner tubes from beside the pool, and headed down to the river. Because the Lodge is on a loop of the river, you can hop in the river on one side of the Lodge grounds, flow gently downstream for at least half an hour, passing a hot spring and locals swimming and washing, and then get out again just a couple of hundred yards from where you got in, at the other side of the Lodge grounds.

We mentioned to the owners of the Lodge that we were planning on visiting Coleman's Cafe in the village for dinner, so they called ahead and asked them to stay open for us, which they did. Again, it was great food from lovely people.

The next day we decided to have a rest day. Nick's back was bad, Karen had tweaked hers on the road to Caracol, and Nathan and I both had various aches and pains as well, so we booked the rooms for another night, and stayed around the Lodge all day.

The Lodge has partnered with a family in the Big Falls village who keep the traditional basket and hammock making and bag weaving skills alive, so we contacted them and Karen and I went round for the afternoon. The family showed us which vines to collect from the rainforest for basket making, and which bits of the vines were edible. We then had a go at splitting the vines and making the baskets ourselves.

Then we were shown how to make string from a local plant with fibrous leaves, and the how to weave a hammock from it. Finally we had a display of how they had weave the traditional bags. It was a good afternoon, with some very friendly and knowledgeable people, and I would highly recommend it.

We went back to the Lodge, collected Nick from the side of the pool, and Nathan from a hammock, and rode into Punta Gorda to try Asha's Kulcha Kitchen, as recommended by the people at the Lodge. We had to ride pretty much all the way through Punta Gorda to get to it, and it didn't look much when we got there, but we soon were glad we had gone. Asha welcomed us and explained all his food had a secret ingredient: love. We loved the place, a shack on stilts out in the sea, and we also loved the food. It was obvious from how busy it was that others did as well. Lionfish features heavily on the menu, which is a non native fish, which is causing lots of issues, so we felt it was our moral duty to eat it. That was one moral duty that was highly enjoyable!

After that we filled the bikes up (190 kms) and rode to a bar for Nick to watch the Superbowl. Nate stayed with him, but after one drink, Karen and I rode back to the Lodge. Later in the evening when Nick and Nate arrived, we discussed the ride back, and all agreed Emma had been right when she advised against riding at night.



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