Thursday, 31 March 2016

Placencia Village

Hello All,
At this time we have been here on the Peninsula for 6 weeks this visit. Being here in this small village you easily get to know it's locals, business owners and other travelers loving Belize.
Through locals we have found a 2 br/1ba apartment for $US500 a month plus BTB tax of 9%. It's in the center of town surrounded by all the restaurants, taco stands and grocery stores. It's nothing fancy, very basic. Like many local housing there is only hot water in the shower which is fine for us (but not for everyone! ). The apartments sit on the lagoon with a 3 minute walk to the Caribbean Sea.
We have discovered many great spots to swim, eat, have a drink and chat with locals and expats alike. Just some of the places are;
The Tipsy Tuna, Barefoot Bar, Sailfish Resort, Cozy Corner, The Pickled Parrot and Tutti Fruit Gelato. Attached are some photos.
You can also see more information on these places on Google Maps and search Mike Brakefield as I am now listed as a Local Guide. More to come and thanks for reading !

Thursday, 25 February 2016

Back to Placencia !

 We're back ! After 3 months visiting our son and his family back in Vancouver, WA we are back this time and currently living in Maya Beach on the Placencia Peninsula.
Maya Beach is a small village made up of vacation rentals, private homes and a few resorts. We are renting a new 1 bedroom cabana on the lagoon. Due to being in the "High Season" we are paying US$850 per month all utilities included (butane, electricity,water and wifi).
When the low season begins on May 1 we will rent a two bedroom in Placencia Village for US$700 monthly all included. When making a reservation be sure to ask if the pricing is US$ or BZ$ !

 This blog will be truthful, it will contain the pro and cons of the areas we stay. I am not a paid blogger. Many bloggers are paid by local businesses to promote them and good for them. Unforunately in MOST of those blogs everything is seen through rose colored glasses.

 Here in Maya Beach there are many nice places to stay a night, a week, or more. You can search the Placencia Hotel, The Green Parrot Inn and Restaurant, Joyce and Franks B&B, The Mayan Breeze Inn. All are on the Beach with restaurants/bars, water sports and wifi.

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

"Paradise" is a game of chance

We are not yet of retirement age as US Social Security dictates. As we have visited here in Belize we have found it to be a beautiful country, great climate and good people. After considerable before move research about the affordability of the region we found that the tourists and relocation sites urge "living like the locals". What thi otr3 d x ls means is having no car, very little travel, substandard housing and basic food. If one is willing it is true that a couple could live here in Belize for about $1800 USedge monthly. To own a car, travel and visit all the country has to offer, travel to neighboring countries and eat great food out more than once a week would cost approximately  $3,000 US monthly. not discount the opinion that the bugs here can be tolerated. It's not the size or type of bugs but the sheer numbers. You will always be battling bugs on you and around you, especially mosquitoes. I suggest bringing a case of bug repellent with you. We still find Belize a great retirement destination and we are now leaving for the states for a few months to visit family. We will return in February with more stories from Placencia, Belize.
"Paradise" is a game of chance.

Friday, 9 October 2015

Placencia Peninsula

 After much research over the past year we made our first trip to the Southern Peninsula of Belize, that is the villages of Maya Beach, Seine Bight and Placencia. We found a True Caribbean feel mixed with tourists and expat residents alike. The peninsula is based in a mixture of Creole and Garifuna people indigenous to that part of the world since the early 1700's. The main cultural difference between Corozal and Placencia is that Corozal, being 7 miles from the Mexican border, is 80% Hispanic. We prefer the Caribbean feel, white sand beaches and vibe of Placencia over that of Corozal and for that reason we are moving to Placencia next month.

Saturday, 29 August 2015

13 Reasons

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Downsizing back home

To get back to the Genesis blog I think it's apparent "Why Belize" for us. Let's move on to the next step which is what we did to downsize and prepare for the move.
We started the process one year out, April of 2014. We were living in a 4 bedroom, 4 bath 2600 sq.ft. home FILLED with stuff. Also our basement was full of 35 years of stuff that we hadn't really gone through in a while. So we began posting on Craigslist, FB and other "For Sale" sites the items we felt we could get rid of with the plan of getting our belongings down to a 2 bedroom apartment amount.

Over a few weekends we went through all of our storage and separated it into three categories; Keep, sell or donate. We had garage sales every weekend during April and May and slowly let go of items. What we didn't sell on the weekends we would donate during the week. Several non-profits will pickup the items at your home. We chose ARC in our area but there are others.

In June 2014 we moved into a 2 bedroom duplex in order to save on expenses and further plan our move to Belize. Over the next year we further downsized by selling one car and keeping one. We continued to sell off belongings until we got EVERYTHING down to our duplex and one 5 by 10 storage locker. It was a lot of work but very satisfying in getting very organized and less materialistic.

During our last month in Washington we decided to sell off pretty much all of our large furniture or give it to our son and his family for their house. Once again we posted the remainder of our items that we could live without and over the month of May 2015 we parted with chairs, couches, beds, etc.
We kept our storage with keepsakes, family photos and items our son and his family can use over time.

Please feel free to comment or ask questions you may have, I will be glad to answer or direct your inquiry !

Thursday, 9 July 2015

San Pedro, Ambergris Caye

Here is an update to our two day trip to Ambergris Caye (pronounced "Amber Grease Key").
The "Thunderbolt" Water Taxi leaves Corozal at 7am daily to San Pedro with a very quick stop at Sarteneja, a small fishing village about 30 minutes south ( by boat) of Corozal. The cost is $90BZ per person round trip. The Thunderbolt website says $80 per round trip but it would appear they have not updated the site recently.
The boat holds about 50 people and the ride is two hours. My wife Shannon prefers riding the boat on top near the bridge rather than down below as it can be choppy when the wind rises.

We arrived in San Pedro later that morning and immediately noticed the hustle and bustle (for Belize). Golf carts are the main mode of transportation and they're EVERYWHERE ! Rentals of the carts is big business and are available at $80US for 24 hours.
San Pedro has a lot of water based action from parasailing to deep diving and everything in between. There are many open markets selling souvenirs, fruits and drinks, etc. Also MANY small stands selling Escabeche, Chicken Rice and Beans and other Belizean dishes.
The walk along the San Pedro (Eastern Shore) is filled with Restaurants, Bars and Dive and Snorkel excursions as far as you can see.
In all, for us, San Pedro is a beautiful place to visit but is all about the Tourist business and not where we would live.