city guides: punta gorda, belize

Whether fresh from Spanish-speaking Guatemala or saying farewell to this Central American anomaly, it is hard to mistake the quintessential Belizean vibe of Punta Gorda. Its proximity to Guatemala and Honduras has left a strong imprint on the resident population and allows for a gentle transition across the border.

This quiet border town, set in picturesque foothills, is so laid-back that the locals have abbreviated it to P.G.

Great for: A base to explore the rural Toledo villages, with a good selection of backpacker-friendly food and lodging options.

P.G. also provides a convenient and hassle-free gateway to Guatemala.

Avoid if: Staying more than a couple of nights here isn't advisable, with activities limited. 

Getting there/away:

Regular buses run to and from northern belize with express lines to Belize City.

From the dock, international boats leave daily for Puerto Barrios, Guatemala, with boats to Livingston, Guatemala leaving at 10 a.m. on Tuesday and Friday. So, if you don't want to linger in P.G. before your forward trip to Guatemala, make sure to plan accordingly.

Budget-breaker or maker? Maker. With Nature's Way hostel providing some of the cheapest accommodation we encountered in Belize you may struggle to get rid of your remaining BZD.