Raggamuffin has put together this unique adventure to access the more remote/ inaccessible parts of Belize’s reef to showcase some of her best snorkeling and fishing areas! The tour takes the route from Caye Caulker and finishes in Placencia (the tour is never undertaken in reverse), remaining in the inner reef to allow for calm sailing waters.
The trip is designed as an island hopping adventure for all those want to experience this uninhabited Caribbean paradise. The adventure will take place over a period of three days and passengers will spend the night on beautiful Rendezvous Caye and Tobacco Cayes whilst visiting Goffs Caye or English Caye and South Water Caye.
During the day the sailboat will gently cruise through Belize’s crystal clear waters and picture postcard scenery whilst stopping to snorkel at least twice each day. Snorkeling opportunities can be maximised by those who are passionate snorkelers by additionally snorkeling around Rendezvous Caye and Tobacco Caye the afternoon they arrive and the morning before they depart.
Fishing is also an additional element to the trip. We carry with us hand lines, trawling rods, spin rods and a spear gun. For those passengers whose passion it is for fishing, this is an ideal opportunity to trawl off the boats, spin cast on the islands and to experience spear fishing! For fly fisherman, although whilst we are on the boat there is no way of accessing the flats, whilst on Rendezvous and Tobacco Caye the flats off these islands are abundant! (We do not provide fly fishing equipment for the trip).
The trip is a ‘simple’ camping trip with Raggamuffin supplying all camping equipment with mats and sheets being provided. Passengers sleep in the units that they travel in ie on average 2 persons to each tent or if they are traveling on their own, their own tent, to allow for privacy. All sailboats are equipped with marine toilets.
Showering facilities are basic but fully functional – some of our boats have shower facilities on the boat and the smaller boats carry fresh water for passengers to rinse themselves. On Tobacco Caye on the second night, we provide shower and bathroom facilities on the island itself . Here we have built our own dock on and have a new camp ground carved out specifically for Raggamuffin with our own private facilities.
For many the quality of the food on the trip is a pleasant surprise as we carry Chef’s on board our trip! In season we will be providing lobster and conch and throughout the year shrimp and obviously there is plenty of fish. For those who do not eat fish we can provide chicken and for vegetarians and those who are gluten intolerant we also have excellent menus – do not worry!
The trip includes all taxes plus snorkeling and fishing equipment equipment, camping gear, marine reserve and island fees and last but not least food and beverages. The cost of this package is $350US per person until 1st November 2016 when the price will increase to $400US per person. Typically there are no group discounts. Trips depart regularly throughout the year on Tuesdays and Fridays.
Please note, trips running over Xmas and New Year and therefore will have an increased price of $450US. This increase of $50US will go directly to the crew to compensate them from being away from their friends and families over these holidays. All other departures are the standard price.
The weather is a vital component to the trips success however it is almost impossible to be 100% accurate about the weather. For a trip to be confirmed we need to be forecast that the rainfall is minimal. Cloud cover is not a reason to cancel a trip as clouds rarely stay around for more than a morning or an afternoon for us on the coast. However heavy rain for more than a morning or an afternoon is reason to either cancel the trip or even postpone.
Determining an accurate weather forecast will be done the eve of the trip, often in the afternoon. To do this we take advice from the Belize Met office in person. They have recently acquired a Doppler radar which gives far more accuracy than many of our Caribbean counterparts. Due to the fact that weather can vary widely for the coast and for inland (which forecast are mainly put together for) we take the time to ring the Chief Forecaster directly and get their opinion.
We reserve the right to postpone or cancel a trip if this information gives us to believe that the trips success will be compromised due to the weather. This being said, most of the year we have good weather, with only rainfall at night and little or none during the day!
Tobacco Caye has its own charm and many of our passengers ask that they want a ‘ride’ to Tobacco Caye. The quickest way to Tobacco Caye is by bus to Dangriga and then a water taxi ride to the island – the Raggamuffin tour is an adventure and not a means of transportation!
However, for those who want to undertake the adventure and then want to remain at Tobacco Caye, this is possible and we highly recommend Joe Jo’s by the Reef – +(501 610 1647).
Passengers stay with the crew and the boat whilst they remain on the island and therefore they are undertaking the ‘lions share’ of the trip, missing out on the last day only. For this the costs for the passenger are the same as if they completed the trip and therefore the discount for dropping off at Tobacco Caye is small – the cost of this shorter version is $325US or $375US after 1st November 2016.
This shorter route can also be used for passengers who have to say catch a plane on the third day as the departure date of the trip does not quite fit into their schedule ie if a passenger wants to take the Tuesday trip yet their flight out of the country is on Thursday. The passenger can depart Tobacco Caye on the regular taxi at 8.30am arriving in Dangriga at 9am. Depending on what time their flight departs there is either the bus (approx 3 hours to Belize City) or the flight (20 minutes).
Back to Caye Caulker ..
The bus – this four hour journey takes you on the Hummingbird Highway with some of the more scenic landscapes in Belize. The express bus departs Placencia at 6.30am and is approximately $9US. The Caye Caulker Water Taxi and the San Pedro Water Taxi offers boats to Caye Caulker.
The boat is not an option of returning! The fundamental reason is pure and simple – safety. The return leg for the crew only is undertaken (weather and equipment permitting) at night. The sea is more rough as the boat travels against the current and in the darkness navigation becomes more difficult. The crew are immensely capable of this journey but we do not permit passengers to come back with the crew to ensure that the boat and the crew are fully focused on their task and therefore safe.
Into Guatemala via Cayo ..
This journey is undertaken by bus and is actually the same distance as one would travel direct from Caye Caulker to Cayo (approx 4 hours).