Belize Yoga Retreat - Frequently Asked Questions

IS THIS JOURNEY RIGHT FOR ME?

Travelers who will enjoy this journey have an interest in nature, history and authentic culture.  The charm of Belize is the low visitor density.  According to the Belize Tourism Authority invites roughly 200,00 visitors a year versus over 2 million by Costa Rica.   The result is a country where over 40% of the vast wilderness is protected and all of the lodging options are small boutique properties versus mega all-inclusive resorts.  Belize is a place where visitors "Come to Be."  Travelers who will NOT enjoy this journey may have a deep fear of critters that crawl (the rainforest is their home), a pace that moves a bit slower and humid weather, Belize in May will have daily highs around 89°F and daily lows of 78°F with humidity for a natural Hot Yoga experience.    

 

WHO CAN JOIN ME ON THIS JOURNEY?

Travel is not restricted to Life Time members only.  Non-Member guests and family are welcome to join you on this journey.  The schedule was designed to incorporate unique Yoga activities in the morning and late afternoon.   This leaves enough leisure time during the day to enjoy with others.  Family members will receive your special Member Rate.  Non-Members will pay an additional 10% guest fee.    

 

IS A PASSPORT AND VISA REQUIRED WHEN TRAVELING TO BELIZE?

Visitors to Belize are required to be in possession of valid passports and return/onward tickets.  Passport expiration dates should be valid six months after the travel end date.   Visas are not required for citizens of the U.S., European Union, Commonwealth or Caricom Nations, Mexico, Austria and Costa Rica. Visas are required for all other nationalities and can be obtained from any Belizean Embassy, consulate or British Embassy. For specific information contact the Immigration and Nationality Department. For further information on visa entry requirements for Belize please visit the Belize Tourism Board website by clicking the following link: Visa and Immigration

 

DO I NEED TO TAKE ANY MALARIA SHOTS OR ANY SHOTS WHEN VISITING BELIZE?

Chaa Creek is located in an unusual and fascinating ecosystem that affords us the enviable position of a sound environment. Forested hill lands with good alluvial soil supply excellent drainage, while bats and a healthy number of over 250 species of birds feed on flying and crawling insects, berries and fruits. What does this mean? According to Chaa Creek, mosquitoes in their jungle environment are at low levels.

 

Here are the malaria guidelines according to the Center for Disease Control.  

 

  • Yellow Fever Requirements: Required if traveling from a country with risk of YFV transmission and ≥1 year of age.1 Recommendations: None

  • Estimated relative risk of malaria for US travelers: Very low.  Malaria Areas with malaria: Small foci of transmission, primarily in Stann Creek and Toledo. Rare locally transmitted cases in other districts including the location of Chaa Creek. None in Belize City and islands frequented by tourists, such as Ambergris Caye. .

  • You should be up to date on routine vaccinations while traveling to any destination.  Full details from the CDC can be found here.  

 

I'VE BEEN HEARING ABOUT THE ZIKA VIRUS.  WHAT SHOULD I KNOW?

According to the CDC Central America, the Caribbean and South America are transmission zones of the Zika virus.  As of 2/4/16 the CDC does not list Belize as a country with the Zika Virus.  For the latest updates please visit the CDC virus map.   If you are pregnant or planning to get pregnant, the CDC advises against travel to countries in these regions.  If you have concerns about how the Zika virus may affect your individual health please contact your local travel clinic.  Additional information can be found on the official Zika Virus FAQ from the CDC.  

 

WHAT’S THE WEATHER LIKE IN BELIZE?

Belize enjoys a subtropical climate with bright sunshine all year round. You may experience intermittent showers, which help to keep our country green and lush. The days are warm with an average annual temperature of 80 degrees. The mountain areas experience cooler weather than the islands and coastal plains. According to Weatherspark.com here are the average weather reports during the month of

TEMPERATURE

RAIN

DEW POINT

WHAT IS THE PROBABILITY OF A HURRICANE STRIKE DURING HURRICANE SEASON?

According to Chaa Creek, the probability of a hurricane making landfall in Belize in any given year is 17%. The prime storm season arrives in Belize and the Western Caribbean region in September and October. Of the 20 hurricanes that have made landfall in Belize in the past 117 years, 17 or 85% have arrived in September and October.  Note, however, that the length of the coast of Belize (less than 200 miles) is much smaller than the length of the coasts of Florida, the Gulf Coast and the East Coast – for example the East Coast of the U..S. is 1860 miles in length, so it offers a much greater area for storms to strike.  

 

WHAT’S THE CURRENCY IN BELIZE?

Belize currency exchange is extremely easy for American visitors. The Belize dollar is at a fixed exchange rate: $2 Belize = $1 USD. So it's very easy to see how much something is costing in USD when you go shopping. Most accommodations and tours are listed in US$ prices, and most restaurants, shops, etc. are listed in BZ$. Nearly everyplace readily accepts USD currency.   If you extend your stay, ATMs are also available across the country, particularly in most tourist destinations- including Placencia, Punta Gorda, Belmopan, Dangriga, Belize City, San Pedro Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker, Orange Walk, San Ignacio and Corozal.  

 

WHAT AIRLINES FLY TO BELIZE?  DO I NEED TO BOOK MY OWN TICKET?  

You are free to book your own airline ticket or use miles, award points or other means for your flight to Belize.  All guests will be greeted at Customs upon your arrival.  If you would like assistance booking your ticket our designers are also available to help. Below you will find a listing of all the direct flights/gateways to fly to Belize:

 

American, US Airways (Website)

 

From Los Angeles, CA (LAX)
Flight Time: 4 hours, 40 minutes

 

From Dallas, TX (DFW)
Flight Time: 2 hours, 50 minutes

 

From Miami, FL (MIA)
Flight Time: 2 hours, 5 minutes

 

From Charlotte, NC (CLT)
Flight Time: 3 hours, 24 minutes

 

Delta Air Lines (Website)
From Atlanta, GA (ATL)
Flight Time: 3 hours, 11 minutes

 

From Los Angeles, CA (LAX)
Flight Time: 4 hours, 40 minutes

 

United Airlines (Website)
From Chicago, IL (ORD)
Flight Time: 4 hours, 15 minutes

 

From Houston, TX (IAH)
Flight Time: 2 hours, 29 minutes

 

From Newark, NJ (EWR)
Flight Time: 6 hours, 25 minutes

 

Southwest Airlines (Website)
From: Houston, TX (HOU)
Flight Time: 2 hours, 29 minutes

 

NOTE:  Do not book any airline tickets until you receive a trip confirmation from Life Time Journeys.  Space for this Yoga Journey is limited and not guaranteed until payment is received.    

 

HOW DO I GET TO CHAA CREEK FROM THE AIRPORT AND HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE?

You will be met at Customs and transferred to and from the airport in air-conditioned minivans. The duration of the guided tour is approximately 1 ½ hours.  

 

WHAT TOURS ARE AVAILABLE FOR FAMILIES?

Adventure abounds within Chaa Creek’s rainforest reserve. With hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding and canoeing, as well as guided nature walks and river exploration, there are plenty of choices to excite every member of the family. There are also half-day tours to the ancient Mayan cites of Xunantunich, ATM Cave and Cave Tubing.  

 

ARE THE ROOMS AIR CONDITIONED AND WHAT AMENITIES ARE INCLUDED WITH THE ROOM?

As an eco-lodge, there is no air conditioning at Chaa Creek.  The traditional design of the palm-thatched and adobe cottages keeps the rooms comfortable in the tropics, while open-air verandas allow plenty of outdoor space to sun seek, stargaze or simply relax in a hammock. Coffee and tea service delivery is available for the early riser, and exotic fruit drinks are available all the time. Botanical shampoo, conditioner and soap products provide nourishing care for all skin types.  

WILL WI-FI BE AVAILABLE?

Chaa Creek offers complimentary wi-fi in the public areas of the lodge.  Please note that due to the remote location, speeds may be slow for video or Skype but are suitable for email. Properties located on the coast also offer wi-fi should you choose to participate in the reef extension.

 

ARE MEALS INCLUDED?

Full breakfast, lunch and dinner are included.  Alcohol and drinks will be at guests' expense.

 

For those guests with food allergies and/or intolerances we know it can be stressful managing your diet while traveling. To help put your mind at ease, Chaa Creek is accustomed to working with guests on special dietary requests.  Its staff will make every reasonable effort to share ingredients information and prevent allergens from coming in contact with any part of your meal.    

 

CAN I ADD ADDITIONAL NIGHTS ONTO MY TRIP?

We will be happy to work with anyone interested in a pre/post stay to further explore the jungles or head out along the world’s second largest barrier reef.  Please contact us to get started exploring your options.  

 

Belize, the only English-speaking country in Central America, offers a unique combination of richly rewarding experiences that make it unlike any destination on the planet.  Here are some higlights according to Belize Tourism:

  • Swim with exotic sea life along the Western Hemisphere's largest barrier reef.

  • Explore the fascinating mysteries of the largest concentration of Mayan sites in the region.  

  • Hike thousands of acres of unspoiled forest, including one of the only jaguar preserves in the world.

  • Escape to any of the more than 400 tropical islands and three (3) of the Western Hemisphere's four (4) coral atolls, surrounded by pristine turquoise waters.

  • Discover the highest waterfall and the most extensive cave system in Central America, and dive the captivating Blue Hole.  

  • The harmonious blend of Maya, Mestizo, Creole, Garifuna, East Indian, Mennonite, Arab and Chinese creates distinctive cultural traditions, including cuisine just waiting for you to discover it.

 

IS CHAA CREEK SAFE?

Chaa Creek has always taken a very proactive approach to the safety, security and well-being of its guests. It maintains a 24-hour security patrol should any of its guests require assistance at any time. All of Chaa Creek’s guides and frontline personnel are CPR- and First Response- trained. A professionally trained paramedic resides on the property along with a security manager and a local physician is always on call.

 

SHOULD I PURCHASE INSURANCE?

We strongly advise that clients purchase travel insurance to cover all non-refundable trip expenses.  If you decline insurance coverage, you will personally assume full responsibility for any financial loss associated with your travel arrangements, and you could lose your travel investment and/or have to pay more money to correct the situation. For example, you will suffer a loss if:  (i) your flight has been cancelled and your hotel and tours are nonrefundable; (ii) you need to cancel your trip due to illness; (iii) a hurricane, volcano or earthquake occurs while traveling and you are stranded; (iv) your airline or tour operator files for bankruptcy; (v) a terrorist incident occurs at the destination you planned on visiting; (vi) you have a medical emergency in a foreign country and need medical attention or evacuation; (vii) your bags are lost and your medication is in them, and you need to have an emergency prescription filled; or (viii) your passport and wallet are stolen, and you need emergency cash and a replacement passport.  We offer Travelex travel Insurance to U.S and Canadian residents and will provide costs associated with insuring your trip, both at time of deposit and final payment.

Option-1:  Travel Ex Travel Select Policy $245 per adult (kids under 18 free)

 

Plan Benefits Maximum Coverage (Per Person)

  • Kids under 21 covered at no additional cost

  • Trip Cancellation Up to 100% of Insured Trip Cost

  • Trip Interruption Up to 150% of Insured Trip Cost

  • Trip Delay $750

  • Baggage & Personal Effects $1,000

  • Baggage Delay $250

  • Emergency Medical & Dental Expenses $50,000

  • Emergency Evacuation & Repatriation $500,000

  • 24 Hour Accidental Death & Dismemberment $25,000

  • Travel Assistance & Concierge Services Included

 

Terms & Conditions Apply.  Review full policy link below for details.

Travel Select Insurance Policy Full Details 

 

Optional Insurance Upgrade $99


Professional Pak: Covers for trip cancellation and interruption for business reasons and protection on some lost, stolen or damaged professional equipment. Reimburses up to $25 for airline club usage and internet usage fees if a trip is delayed.

  • Trip Cancellation & Interruption - Business Reasons

    • Up to 100% of Insured Trip Cost

  • Trip Delay

    • Internet Usage Fees $25

    • Airline Club Admission $25

  • Professional Business Property $500 ($150 Deductible)

 

Option-2:  TravelEx Travel Max Policy $487 per adult (kids under 18 free)

 

Plan Benefits Maximum Coverage (Per Person)

 

  • Kids under 21 covered at no additional cost

  • Trip Cancellation Up to 100% of Insured Trip Cost

  • Trip Interruption Up to 150% of Insured Trip Cost

  • Trip Delay $1,000

  • Baggage & Personal Effects $2,500

  • Professional Business Property $500 ($150 Deductible)

  • Recreational Sporting Equipment Rental $600

  • Baggage Delay $600

  • Emergency Medical & Dental Expense $100,000

  • Emergency Evacuation & Repatriation $1,000,000

  • Accidental Death & Dismemberment

    • 24 Hour $25,000

    • Common Carrier $50,000

  • Flight Accidental Death & Dismemberment $200,000

  • Rental Car Damage $50,000

  • Travel Assistance & Concierge Services

  • Nurse Assist

 

Terms & Conditions Apply.  Review full policy link below for details.

Travel Max Insurance Policy Full Details

 

WHAT ARE THE MOST POPULAR TOURS?

Exploring ATM Cave and Cave Tubing are special experiences that are unique to Belize and not found in other countries.  Travelers who have taken these amazing expeditions are part of a select group worldwide.  You can watch videos on our Tour Page to see if these experiences are the right fit for you.    

 

WHAT IF I DON'T GET ALONG WITH A SHARED ROOM GUEST?

If you have signed up for shared lodging and there are potential issues with a shared room situation, we will make all reasonable attempts to resolve the situation amicably.  This may include helping to mediate the differences and/or switching rooms with another guest.  Please note, given the small intimate nature of the eco lodge environment there may not be an option to find an open available room.    

 

WHAT DO GUESTS COMMONLY PACK?

Clothing:

  • Lightweight breathable sportswear

  • Shirts – both long and short sleeve

  • Pants – both long and short

  • Comfortable closed toe walking/hiking shoes or boots (bring two pairs if you have room, they can be slow to dry)

  • Extra Socks

  • Water sport Sandals

  • Windbreaker or light jacket or sweater

  • Hat (wide-brimmed)

  • Swimwear

  • Raincoat/poncho

  • Umbrella (works well and is much cooler)

  • One set of “nice” clothes for visiting finer establishments in the evenings. Ladies can add a large shawl, for over the shoulders in the evening, and also a sarong over a swimsuit; a dress and/or skirt, depending on how much room is left in the suitcase.

 

Gear:

  • Camera with lots of film and extra batteries

  • Binoculars

  • Flashlight/headlamp with extra batteries

  • Day pack

  • Water bottle

  • Sunscreen (SPF 35 & waterproof)

  • Insect Repellent

  • Sun glasses

  • First-aid kit

  • Naturalist Field Guides: Birders: “Don't forget to bring your birdbook”! (Birdbooks are also available in Chaa Creek's gift shop)

 

Traveling with Small Children:

  • Although life jackets are a requirement for all boat operators, smaller sizes are not common, so bring along life jackets for babies and small children.

  • Pack water toys, stuffed animals and books to keep your children busy especially on the journey to Belize .

  • You will find a selection of disposable diapers, cereal and formulas in town, however if you have a preferred brand, be sure to bring.

 

Personal:

  • Personal medications (Any prescription medications for you and your kids – enough supplies to last for the duration of your stay)

  • Contact lens supplies (you might be better off with glasses but if you prefer contact lenses be sure to bring sufficient cleaning supplies)

  • Toiletries: toothbrush, toothpaste, biodegradable soap, a wash cloth, and enough razors.

  • Good to Have:

  • Garbage bags – for wet and dirty clothes

  • Good Book

  • Maps, Guidebooks

  • Alarm clock

  • Notebook & Pencil

 

Surprisingly Useful:

  • Bubble Wrap – for wrapping of souvenirs

  • Padded half-finger gloves – very practical for canoeing, bicycling, and protection when scrambling through cave, climbing temples, etc.

 

NOTE: Avoid bringing perfumes, heavily scented toiletries (they attract mosquitoes). All expensive jewelry and watches should be left at home