The diving in the Dangriga region is best done from Hopkins, there you will find some great resorts that will cater to all your diving needs. It's a fabulous place to unwind, get away from the touristy areas and you still visit all the best dive sites in Belize, which is probably why you're in country!
Are you ready for some fantastic diving trips around Dangriga? You can see it all from here, whatever you certification level or interests. Just a 30 minute boat road and you'll be drifting along colourful walls, full of sea life to find, from sharks and rays, to macro diving, you better have your camera handy!
The closest sites to the coast are at the Southern Barrier Reef, half a day trips so you can spend the other half of the day on the beach. You will enjoy two dives around Tobacco Caye and South Water Caye in a place called the Grand Channel. There are many sites in the area, you will see wonderful sea life such as turtles, eels, different species of rays and big fish like the king mackrel and barracuda.
A full day trip out to Glover's Reef Atoll is well worth it, with 3 dives on pristine reefs, teaming with life, it's no wonder this world class diving region is now a world heritage site. Another similar day trip is to the Turneffe Islands Atoll, famous for the huge schools of fish , sharks, turtles and rays.
If you want to see the Blue Hole and Lighthouse Reefs then it's a great day out, especially for deep divers. Diving with whalesharks is also possible at the Gladden Spit, April to June around full moon is the best time.
Why not hire a private charter and do it yourself? This is an excellent option if you have a group, then you can see what you want to without worrying about anyone else. Hopkins in Dangriga is the perfect holiday vacation in gorgeous surroundings and divers will love every minute of there time in the water here.
(By Kelly Luckman)
Dangriga, formerly known as Stann Creek Town, is in Southern Belize, and is regarded as the cultural capital of the region. It´s home to the Garifuna, an ethic group that descends from shipwrecked African slaves and the native Caribs.
The population have kept their African musical and religious traditions, and it´s where the Caribbean Punta Rock originated and there´s plenty of evidence of this is the lively bars and restaurants.
There are numerous flights from Belize City to Dangriga, and it´s worth a visit just for its access to the local mountains and jungles. It´s quite underdeveloped when it comes to tourism, but that´s largely its appeal.
If you want somewhere that may be slightly rough around the edges but full of friendly warm natives you´ll enjoy your visit here. Organise a guide and head to the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary to spot the local wildlife, don't do this trip without a guide due to safety reasons. You might even like to camp or rent a room here.
If you want to escape the 'city' feel of Dangriga then hire a car and head to Hopkins, a little fishing village with white sandy beaches. Here you can take a drumming lesson, windsurf or kayak, take a dive trip or go fishing.
If you´re lucky enough to be there on November the 19th you will get to experience Garifuna Settlement day. It´s one of Belize´s national holidays and commemorates the arrival of the Garifuna people to Belize, it´s a colourful, loud raucous affair... with drum music dominating the proceedings.
So take a chance on Dangriga, for more of a cultural insight of Belize and its people. Try to find the various markets selling local crafts and painting or the factory that produces various jams, chutneys and sauces from the local produce. That's really getting into the heart of the area.