Monday, August 03, 2009
Placentia – Belize – N16.30 – W88.21 – May 30 – August 1, 2009
This is a return trip to one of our favorite stops. We checked in at Big Creek with our friends Doug & Rayene s/v Kristiana and renewed acquaintances Vicky and Jim s/v Allegro and with Barb & Torry s/v Litbe. Barb and Torry are now Captain and Mate working for Moorings Charters on the sailing catamaran Double Eagle.
After enjoying a few days of all the amenities the this once sleepy little fishing village turned enterprising small town which offers, including our favorites, Wendy’s for Fried Stuff Jacks, TuttiFruiti for homemade Gelato (some of the best Ice cream on the planet), we departed June 8 for Wipari Cay, Cary Cay, Queen Cays and Little Water Cay. These small islands mostly offer mooring balls for easy anchoring and lovely places to snorkel. Queen Cay is in the reserve and there is a charge of $10 per person per stay. During our visit here we met ‘Kate’ a charterer on the Tradewinds Catamaran who enjoyed spending time with Doc.
After a few days out on the reef joined by our friends Barb and Torrey, we returned to Placentia preparing Kaija for her annual trek home (to the land of stuff) to visit family and friends and bring back boat parts.
During Kaija’s absence, Gary and Doc made fast friends with the owners of a newly constructed home on Placentia island with its own private dock and a thatched palapa (cabana) with two wonderful easy back chairs where Gary spent a couple of hours each morning and afternoon reading while Doc frolicked in the water with the dolphin family resident in the anchorage. The property manager, Pepe (given name Solomon) along with Cotton (given name Linden) and workers Mark and John made us feel right at home and soon we were joined by Pepe’s 6 year old son Roger and Rottweiler puppy Oso. Neither Roger nor Oso could swim so the lessons began. With the aid of a long yellow noodle which Roger named ‘Champs’ it wasn’t long before he & Oso were busy swimming and treading water.
For those of you lucky enough to visit Placentia we highly recommend the following, Tommy’s for Chinese food, Wallen’s for wholesale case lots as well as regular groceries and in particular, canned New Zealand Butter, and concentrated fruit juice Squash (they accept credit cards), TuttiFruiti (Tizy & Lorenzo for the best Italian Ice cream made daily), Placentia Office Supply for high-speed internet and other office needs, Boson’s Chair, Paul and Lisa offer laundry service and internet as well. There is also a Swiss Baker on the ‘sidewalk’ along with The Barefoot Bar for excellent live music, and Le Thatch for a variety of excellent meals. The ‘veggie’ truck comes three times a week and offers a great selection of veggies, fruits, pork chops and cheese. Placentia is also the home to Marie Sharp’s famous hot sauce which comes in many levels of heat and we do mean ‘HEAT’.
For those who may be interested in original Belizean wood carving in either Rosewood or Mahogany there are many artisans here in Placentia. Kaija found a lovely carved turtle bowl she had been seeking for some time from Leo the Carver on located across from Sunrise on the Sidewalk.
The anchorage is quite large and now that the Moorings have moved there base and fleet around to the Lagoon, removing some 30 boats, there is ample parking for all. Due to an earthquake centered just north of Roatan Honduras on May 27th registering 7.4, the fuel dock here was damaged beyond repair, however one can still jury jug from the adjacent Shell station or go into the canal by Hokey Pokey taxi or to Roberts Grove Marina back in the lagoon.
Belize is a cruisers paradise as well as a backpackers haven. Having the second longest barrier reef in the world makes for wonderful isolated cruising stops and there are many inland places to see.