As the leaves on the trees begin to turn and the air begins to grow crisper in North America, the autumn months are filled with liquid sunshine and balmy temperatures in Belize.
But there’s so much more to enjoy in Belize other than just the weather. Several of the most exciting and lively festivals take place during the fall season, including:
Battle of St. George’s Caye Day – September 10
Kicking off “patriot month” is the national holiday of the Battle of St. George’s Caye Day. The lengthy festival name refers to a critical naval battle that occurred in 1798 between English settlers and a Spanish fleet in the waters off of St. George’s Caye (in Belize, an island is known as a “caye”). This momentous battle led to Belize becoming the only British colony in Central America.
The streets are bedecked with the national colors of red, white, and blue. Towns and villages across the country celebrate this historic day with parades, street dances, live music, and lots of good food and drinks.
Independence Day – September 21
On September 21, 1981, Belize gained its independence from Great Britain. The occasion is celebrated with a tremendous explosion of patriotic pride: poetry recitals, music concerts, parades, and, of course, lots and lots of fireworks!
Pan American Day – October 12
Known in some parts of the region as Columbus Day, this day holds special pride of place in Belizean’s hearts as Christopher Columbus himself helped survey the coastline of Belize on his final journey to the New World in 1502. Pan American Day is a time of dancing, feasting, and a celebration of all the unique cultures that make up modern day Belizean society.
Garifuna Settlement Day – November 21
The Garifuna compose just 4% of the population but their Afro-Caribbean heritage has contributed greatly to Belizean society, especially their native foods, music, and dancing. Garifuna Settlement Day heralds the arrival of the Garifuna in dugout canoes some two centuries ago with speeches, music, food, and plenty of traditional Garifuna drumming.
Thanksgiving is not on the official holiday calendar in Belize, but many overseas workers have developed strong ties with the United States, making Thanksgiving a popular holiday in Belize too. Visitors can enjoy turkey, dressing, and plenty of delicious sides while watching the big game beamed in via satellite from the United States.
To enjoy all the best that Belize has to offer in the fall, stay at the beachfront Laru Beya Resort on the world-renowned Placencia Peninsula in southern Belize.