Have you ever taken a vacation where the weather was determined to undo your every plan? How is it that while you are intent on doing anything BUT work, Mother Nature is busy putting in overtime, making sure she fulfills her duty of delivering blessed rain? I love you Mother…but why can’t we coordinate our holiday schedules better?
Of course, good planning is important when organizing a vacation, and choosing to stay at a lodge over the Thanksgiving weekend, in the RAIN forest, during the RAINY season, probably wasn’t my smartest move. However, we were up for an adventure, and thank you rain for making our excursion even more memorable!
Our destination – and one that has been on my ‘must do’ list for some time: Pook’s Hill Lodge. Nestled within lush jungle 5.5 miles south of Teakettle village on the Western Highway between Belmopan and San Ignacio, it’s an easy drive from Belize City. If you don’t have wheels, they offer transport options to and from many locations within the country.
The Pook’s Hill property is a carpet of hilly, green landscape dotted with thatched cottages that remind me of hobbit homes, and the surrounding forest, busy with chirping birds and flitting butterflies is enchanting. Add the soft soundtrack of drizzling rain, and you are immersed in a jungle ambiance that almost begs for a nap.
There are a variety of cottages to choose from depending on the size of your party, and they even have a couple Bird Walk cabañas that are set on platforms 20 feet above the ground, where the jungle views are spectacular. The main lodge is an open thatched building warm with hardwood floors, comfy seating area and a small bar. Guests gather there for socializing and meals, which are served buffet style in the dining room on the garden level. There’s lots of chatter and laughter as everyone shares how their day of adventure went. From onsite activates such a birding, hiking and swimming, to tours that include Maya archaeological sites, caving, zip-lining, cave tubing and more, everyone is excited to share how their day was, even if they did get rained on!
I would give us an A for effort when it came to our own exploring. Every time the rain let up and the sun threatened to burn through the cloud cover, we would run outside for a quick hike. Many of the nearby trails were unpassable due to the flooded creeks, but we managed to slosh around and admire the rainforest in all its glory. Inevitably to heavens would again open, and we would be soaked to the bone by the time we hustled back to our cottage. This might sound like a soggy damper to our holiday, but really it wasn’t all that bad considering it’s a warm rain…so what if you get a little (or a lot) wet!
We still had fun, drinking wine and playing cards all afternoon, and trying to guess how many inches of rain had fallen within the last hour. We took delicious naps and read books that had been neglected for months, and we were forced to relax! Hmmm, isn’t that what a vacation is for?
We loved Pook’s Hill Lodge, and we will be back another time, during the dry season that is. For more info please visit their website at www.pookshilllodge.com

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About the Author: Tamara Sniffin

I’m a sucker for a fuzzy face, a feathered face, a face with fins or even one with scales! I am in love with the creatures and the flora that are synonymous with Belize and every opportunity I have to learn more about them and explore their wild habitats I am there! I’m the happiest when I’m snorkeling the reef and swimming with turtles, however my passion is not just limited to critters! Laced throughout this compact jungle gem of a country live the Kriol, Maya, Garifuna, Mestizo and Spanish people, and experiencing each culture, especially their celebrations is one of my favorite pastimes.

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