Belize Islands and Cayes

The cayes, deep-sea atolls and the coral reef are some of the main attractions of Belize. The barrier reef, which is 185 miles long, is the longest in the Western Hemisphere. The cays are islands that lie between the mainland and the barrier reef.

Although mangrove keys are normally uninhabitable for humans, they provide superior habitat for birds and marine life. Many birds, fish, shellfish and marine organisms begin their life within the protection of the mangrove. On the other hand, the island's cayes, distinguished by their palm trees, have provided the basis for the development of many resorts to serve water sports enthusiasts and marine naturalists. Cayes and atolls provide a superior opportunity for diving, snorkeling, fishing, boating, sailing, and sea kayaking, as well as being a habitat for both nesting birds and turtles.

Ambergris Caye
Ambergris Caye is a warm, sunny island off the mainland of Belize that offers azure water, first-class hotels, and many water-related activities such as diving, snorkeling, and much more. Ambergris is the largest island that receives most of the visitors who travel to Belize.

Caye Caulker
Caye Caulker is a laid-back destination that offers all types of accommodation, usually mid-budget. The island also offers all kinds of water sports, such as diving and snorkeling. Caulker sits between the mainland and Ambergris and can be reached by boat from Belize City in 45 minutes.

Glover's Reef
Once the base of pirate John Glover, this island is now a paradise with pearly white sand beaches. Glovers Reef is the southernmost of Belize's triad of atolls and the least dived. It is located 70 miles from Belize City and has 700 coral patches surrounded by slopes of 40 to 2,600 feet.

Tobacco Caye
Tobacco Caye is located on the Belize Barrier Reef, the largest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere. Tobacco Caye offers the best offshore diving in Belize and is only ten minutes away from over 20 of the best dive sites in Belize.

South Water Caye
Imagine an island less than half a mile long, covered in white coral sand, tropical flowers and coconut trees, surrounded by warm, crystal clear water wrapped in coral reefs that surround more than half of the island. That is South Water Caye, which is also on the Barrier Reef.

Lighthouse Reef Atoll
Lighthouse Reef is a 40-mile preserve and one of the most exotic dive spots in Belize. It is perfect for the experienced diver or the beginner. One of the most iconic dive sites in Belize is the Great Blue Hole at Lighthouse Reef. Other spectacular sites include Half Moon Caye Wall, at the southern tip of the atoll.

These are just some of the most famous cays in the hundreds of islands in Belize. They all offer first-class diving, snorkeling, and many other activities. Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker each have airstrips, making these exotic islands easy to access.

Belize offers many different islands to meet your specific needs, some just 20 minutes from the mainland and others more exclusive, though less accessible. All of this will make your Belize vacation unforgettable!

Contact our Belize Vacation experts today by visiting our Belize Trip Planner!