Taking a tropical vacation can be a daunting experience for your wallet, especially if you watch your pennies. Once you arrive, finding things you want to do that don’t stick to your budget can ruin your experience, but if you read that headline, you know that this is good news for penny pinchers vacationing in Placencia Belize.
It gets better. You can stay at one of Placencia’s most popular luxury venues — Laru Beya Beach Resort — without cleaning out your bank account. Have we piqued your interest? That’s our intention. Now, a little about this one-of-a-kind sidewalk and the lush resort that delivers on service, beauty and amenities.
A sidewalk, you say?
You’re not confused. The village of Placencia is home to an expanse of concrete commissioned by an Anglican bishop who ministered to area fishermen when the nation was known as British Honduras. Weary of plodding through terrain that hurt his feet, the clergyman’s plea for a sidewalk morphed from wish to pavement.
Construction was no easy fete in 1947, but when fishermen realized that the expanse could help them get catches to market faster and easier, they volunteered to pour cement over a foundation of what’s estimated to be 30,000 conch shells, broken pieces of coral and beach sand. You may still spot some of those shells today.
Extending the sidewalk by popular demand
The village council admitted that the pride and joy of Placencia, it’s sidewalk, needed an upgrade and an extension, so in 1970, that became a community project. Enthusiasm ran deep. Families volunteered to pitch in on the construction. Even kids got in on the act, powered by pitchers of Kool-Aid and cookies. By the time the northern end was finished, the sidewalk measured 5,000 feet long.
When is a sidewalk not a sidewalk? When it’s so popular residents begin to refer to it as Placencia Village’s only road! Still touted as the “Guinness Record Holder of the Narrowest Main Street in the World,” it’s hard to get rid of a title when Belizeans are so proud of what has become a tourism stop.
You can’t keep a good sidewalk down!
When Iris, a category three hurricane, ravaged Belize in 2001, the beloved sidewalk fell victim to Mother Nature. Undaunted, a fundraising campaign to rebuild ensued. Now considered the village’s main artery, the most recent iteration of the Placencia sidewalk is wider than the original, so people can walk side-by-side rather than in lines reminiscent of kindergarten queues.
Ride a bike or golf cart on this pathway and you’ll be fined $100BZD if you’re caught, but for folks meandering down the sidewalk, there’s so much to see, who wants to speed? Take a stroll down the sidewalk and plan to spend plenty of time browsing shops, dining at hot spots and dropping in on pubs along the way.
Travel experts recommend starting at the Placencia Municipal Pier…
…but you can start anywhere you like because there’s much to see. But before you start walking, check into comfortable digs at the Laru Beya Beach Resort where budget-friendly deals offer you a fabulous Caribbean vacation that you can afford if you say yes to any of these Belize vacation specials.
Come for the sidewalk. Stay to be pampered. Leave with money in your wallet. Now that’s a tropical vacation in the sun that even Scrooge couldn’t turn down!