Caye Caulker: Go Slow

The mantra on the island of Caye Caulker, which you know the moment you step onto the island, is Go Slow. The mosaic tiled proclamation of this is strategically placed on the ground you walk over as you step from the boat dock onto the island. In Caye Cualker, it’s all about relaxing and living easy.

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A small island off the coast of Belize, Caye Caulker doesn’t draw the major tourist crowds that Ambergris Caye does, and the locals like it that way. Life is slow and enjoyable on this island, and there are just enough amenities to keep you comfortable and entertained, while maintaining the reality you came here craving, of getting away from it all. You’ll feel you’ve found your own personal island retreat when you come to Caye Caulker.

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White sand beaches and an abundance of palm trees are the standard on Caye Caulker. From my brightly colored hotel, where I sway ever so slightly in the hammock on my porch, I gaze up to see the beaches and palm trees calling. The warm light breeze lulls me out of the hammock and onto the beach. As I stroll along the beach, with the white sand warming the soles of my feet, I see a coconut lying at the base of a palm tree. I look up and see this tree isn’t too tall, I could reach a fresh coconut! Plucking the round green coconut from the tree, I walk proudly to the nearby restaurant, where I cut a hole in the top and stick a straw in. Mmmm The fresh coconut water tastes delicious and refreshing. This is how coconuts are meant to be enjoyed.

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As I continue to stroll along the beach, I notice dozens of conch shells piled up, beside front decks and trees and docks. Curious, I ask a man passing me, who is wearing a headpiece fashioned out of a palm frond, why the shells are sitting there in piles. He tells me, “We eat the conch meat. Then we toss the shells because we have no use for them.” My eyes light up and my smile widens, as he has basically just told me that mounds of gold are free for the taking! I spend the afternoon selecting the perfect conch shell to take home as a souvenir, scrutinizing over color, shape, and damages. I will have to clean it and bleach it when I get home, but this beauty worth it.

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After choosing the perfect conch shell and grabbing a dinner of the juiciest grilled chicken I’ve ever tasted, I walk to the other side of the island to watch the sunset. The island is long and thin, so crossing the short way only takes fifteen minutes walking. I watch the sun slowly lower itself into the ocean, lighting up the sky with brilliant reds, pinks, and oranges, as the waves crash against the docks. A perfect end to a perfect day in paradise! Thank you, Caye Caulker.

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