• Spelunking in the ATM Caves. And we're not talking "Automated Teller Machines". The cave was a major ceremonial site for the ancient Mayans and calcified to the floor are precious relics and bones from human sacrifices. Swimming into the cave and scrambling around may well be the most exciting adventure, not just in Belize, but in Central America.
  • Chartering a Sailboat for Some Isolated Island Explorations: The protected waters, steady gentle trade winds, and hundreds of isolated islands and anchorages make Belize an ideal place for bareboat charters. Given the shallow draft, increased interior space, and reduced drag, a multihull is your best bet. The Moorings (tel. 888/952-8420 in the U.S. and Canada, or 523-3351; www.moorings.com) and TMM (tel. 800/633-0155 in the U.S., or 226-3026; www.sailtmm.com) are two large-scale charter companies with operations on Ambergris Caye and in Placencia.
  • Fly-Fishing for Bonefish, Permit & Tarpon on the Outer Atoll Flats: Belize is a world-class fishing destination, and while offshore fishing for bigger game is possible, the real draw here is fly-fishing for feisty and world-record size bonefish, permit, and tarpon (actually, the tarpon get as big as most deep-sea game). Turneffe Flats (tel. 888/512-8812 in the U.S.; www.tflats.com) is an excellent fishing operation located on Turneffe Island Atoll.
  • Kayaking & Camping around Glover's Reef Atoll: The relatively calm protected waters of the atoll and manageable distances between islands make this a perfect place to explore under your own power, paddling a one- or two-person sea kayak. Both Island Expeditions (tel. 800/667-1630 or 604/452-3212 in the U.S.; www.islandexpeditions.com) and Slickrock Adventures (tel. 800/390-5715 or 435/259-4225 in the U.S.; www.slickrock.com) run various adventurous multiday kayak tours to small camps and lodges on private isolated cayes of Glover's Reef Atoll.
  • Riding an Inner Tube through the Caves Branch River Cave System (Cayo District and Western Belize): This is certainly the most popular and probably the easiest way to explore Belize's vast network of caves. You strap on a battery-powered headlamp, climb into the center of an inflated car inner tube, and gently float through a series of limestone caves, your headlamp illuminating the stalactites and the occasional bat. The entire sensation is eerie and slightly claustrophobic, but fun nonetheless -- especially if you go with a small group on a day when the caves are not crowded. 
  • Canoeing, Kayaking, or Inner Tubing on the Macal or Mopan Rivers (Western Belize): These two rivers converge around the city of San Ignacio, in the Cayo District. Upstream from town on either river are ample opportunities for paddling or floating. Depending on the water level and the section you choose, this can range from a lazy canoe or inner-tube paddle to a Class III kayak trip over rushing rapids. Any of the hotels in the Cayo District can help you organize one of these adventures.
  • Horseback Riding through the Cayo District (Western Belize): The Cayo District is a perfect area to explore on horseback. Rides can be combined with visits to jungle waterfalls and swimming holes, as well as nearby Mayan ruins. Mountain Equestrian Trails (tel. 669-1124; www.metbelize.com) has one of the better stables and horse-riding operations in the Cayo District.


Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.