Hi friends! I know, it's been a while.
Lot's of things have been happening in my life and I haven't been able to devote as much time to my blog...but one of the things I did while not writing blog posts was go on a trip to Belize!!!
First things first, here's a little background on how this trip happened: I was at a networking event in December where I met Vanessa, owner of Micro YYC, and Jordan, owner of Treexploration and it might be a bit of an understatement when I say we became friends fast. Jordan told us how he takes people into the rainforests of Belize, Guyana, or Jamaica, immerses people in the local culture and teaches about conservation sustainable living. I was convinced that we had to go to Belize and who better to go with than the person I had met 5 minutes ago?!
Fast forward to February. No one really thought I was serious about going to Belize or that it would happen. BUT WE MADE IT HAPPEN!
Treexploration organized 8 days of adventure fuelled by 100% vegan food. Keep reading to see highlights from our trip and what we ate:
We spent our first night in Belize City where we tried a Belizean food staple; rice and beans. We spent the night on a Sit and Sip which is essentially a bar on wheels and each seat has pedals which you are supposed to use to keep the bar moving which is pretty ridiculous haha. It took us around Belize City and we would stop every now and then at the side of the road to have a dance party. We all drank a bit too much rum that night and that's all I'm going to say.
In the morning, we drove to the city San Ignacio with Vanessa laying in the back regretting drinking so much rum. For lunch, we had Hudut which was definitely one of my favourite meals from the trip. It's a coconut milk soup with vegetables and it comes with a ball of mashed plantain on the side and you take pieces off and dip it into the soup. SO GOOD. Then we drove outside the city to a village called Bullet Tree and stayed at Parrot Nest Lodge which was the cutest spot in the middle of the jungle. It's hard to explain the feeling of being in the jungle but the sounds and the wildlife and trees are so energizing but peaceful at the same time. We had such a cute cabin and there was a shared space with lots of hammocks and we got to hang out with the fur babies that lived there. In the evening everyone would eat a homemade dinner together. The cooks at Parrot Nest were more than happy to make a vegan meal and our first meal there was stuffed zucchini with rice and salad and it was so yummy.
The cooks at Parrot Nest had never made vegan pancakes before and made some of the best I've ever had. After breakfast, we visited the Mayan ruins at Cahal Pech, explored some more of San Ignacio, and then rode in the back of a truck (which is fun as f*ck) to check out some waterfalls. We unexpectedly stopped at a Yoga Ashram where we met some of the biggest hippies ever. They had kombucha and cookies and led us through a quick stretch and meditation with chanting and we didn't love the chanting... On our way back home we stopped at Cayo Twist, a dairy-free ice cream shop and had soursop ice cream which was so delicious and really hard to describe the flavour. We finished off the night with another great meal and relaxing at Parrot Nest.
Before we left our cozy cabin in the jungle for a tent in the jungle... we fell in love. We were served fry jacks for breakfast (deep fried dough, yes please!) and they were one of the best things we've ever had.
On the way to our destination, we drove along side an orange truck and asked if they could give us some oranges so they threw them through our car window while driving! We ate salbutes and burritos and then we ate our car oranges with salt and spices. We hiked the Tiger Fern trail through the jungle which was extremely sweaty but so worth it when we got to the top. We visited two more waterfalls and filled up our water bottles from one of them. We saw the most amazing night sky before spending the night in our tent on top of a mountain in the jungle. Camping in the middle of the jungle was crazy and being able to say that we did it seems even crazier.
We woke up to the best view and saw some parrots and also a tapir, the national animal of Belize. It rained a bit so we had to do a little less adventuring and went to visit a Maya Center Village where we learned about Mayan culture from Aurora, the sweetest little Mayan lady. We made real chocolate by grinding up cacao beans and then we mixed the paste with hot water and made a delicious drink that left us feeling so good. We also ground up corn and made tortillas. Those Mayan women are strong AF because all that grinding was a lot harder than it looks. We also got to pick a cacao fruit and eat it and listen to lots of stories from Aurora. Aurora is also an energy healer and Vanessa and I each did a reading with her. It was the perfect day after our night in the jungle.
After spending the night in Hopkins we drove back to Belize City so that we could take a ferry to the island Caye Caulker.
I love this island so much. The palm trees, the water, the sand roads, the slow pace and chill vibes, and the sunset!!! We had 3 days left so this was our time to relax before going back home. We had fun partying on our first night on the island and I came home with a bottle of rum that I won in a dance competition. Yup.
We spent the morning out on the dock and I got a little bit too excited to be in the sun so I got a terrible (and I mean terrible) burn, rookie mistake.
Our love for fry jacks didn't stop and we found lots of places to get them on the island. We also had the best smoothies which were just all of the fresh fruit blended up.
Later that day we went snorkelling in the largest living reef in the world, swam with nurse sharks and sting rays and that was definitely one of the craziest things I've done, especially because sharks are my biggest fear. I may have been death gripping Vanessa's hand the entire time.
We spent our last day eating more fry jacks, drinking out of coconuts, and walking around the island. We soaked up more sun even though I was still so so burnt. We had amazing weather on the island and I definitely did not want to leave.
So, we had enough adventures for a lifetime in about 8 days. It was crazy and exciting and tiring and fun and I loved every minute of it. I feel like I had to leave out so many details but I didn't want this post to be ridiculously long.
I was very surprised by how easy it was to eat vegan in Belize. Everyone knew what vegan was and they were happy to accommodate. If there was absolutely nothing else we could always get rice and beans which was still so good.
Treexploration is a huge advocate for conservation so Jordan made sure to teach us about conservation of the rainforest and also more about the trees and wildlife. We had journals where we wrote down the wildlife and trees we learned about which was a really cool part of the trip.
Also, this was the first time I've had someone plan an entire trip for me, Treexploration booked the flights, hotels, and organized everything. We just had to show up. The next trip to Belize is a yoga retreat from April 14-21 and I 1000000% recommend it. You need to read more about it here: www.treexploration.com
It was extremely difficult not to post a hundred photos from the trip, so to see more here's a quick video: