Jul 302011


Perched on a hillside overlooking the crystal-clear waters of the New River Lagoon, the Lamanai Outpost Lodge provides a jungle experience unlike any other. Adjacent to the spectacular Maya ruins of the Lamanai Archaeological Reserve.

Lamanai Outpost Lodge sunrise

Sunrise on Crab-Catcher Lagoon

‘Lamanai’ means ‘submerged crocodile’, and you only need to observe the 28 mile long spring fed lagoon next to Lamanai Outpost Lodge to find them. Here, amid the remnants of a major Maya city are an astounding variety of habitats ideal for nature adventure activities, departing directly from your cabaña’s doorstep each day.

Or try guided excursions after nightfall to delve into the mysterious nocturnal wilderness of the lagoons and jungle beyond. With most tours departing with only six or fewer guests, your choice of the two activities included per night’s stay is guaranteed to make for a rewarding and a very personal agenda.

Accommodations feature a thatched roof over hardwood interiors that are fully screened and nicely ventilated, and include electricity, refrigerator, and a private bath with hot and cold water. Most of your time at the lodge is likely to be spent leisurely enjoying your veranda.

Lamanai Outpost is one of a very select handful of Belize’s jungle lodges to have been frequently featured on shows and channels as Wild Things, Discovery, Animal Planet, National Geographic Explorer and World Gone Wild. The lodge also earned the distinction of being voted Belize’s Hotel of the Year for 1999 and 2000.

Veranda at the Lodge

Veranda at the Lodge



Lamanai is all about the activities, tours and wildlife, and the staff make sure you don’t miss anything and make the absolute best use of your time. The energy of the staff and other guests will make 4 hours in an airboat spotting birds pass in a flash and leave you wishing it would never end.

Mayan Ruins

Lamanai is located on the New River Lagoon and is one of the largest sites in Belize. About a hundred buildings have been uncovered including NIO-43, which is the largest ruin of the pre-classic Mayan world. The site is spread across 950 acres.

High Temple at Lamanai

High Temple at Lamanai

Occupied between 1500 B.C. and the 19th century, the city of Lamanai had an extremely long lifetime. Greatness was received early as the structure NIO-43 proves. The city went along minding its own business until the first contact with the Spanish. It even lasted long enough for a Franciscan monk to record its original name Lamanay or Lamayna, thus allowing its name to remain what it always has been.

Besides the two Christian churches, reservoir and the sugar mill, most of the structures are distinctively Mayan. The most important of these is NIO-43. Built about 100 B.C, it was preserved in a modified 600 A.D. version. The discovery of this structure was extremely important. In the late classic period most of the ceremonial structures were converted to residential quarters thus slowly weakening the hierarchical order.

First discovered in 1917 it was not until 1974 that the site was seriously excavated and preserved by the Royal Ontario Museum. Before 1974 the site was left untouched except by the occasional passing archaeologist or looter.

The site can only be reached by boat down New River, or by the road from San Felipe, which is usually not accessible during the rainy season.

Lamanai spends its days in the company of the residing families of howler monkeys. The surrounding reserve is rich in wildlife due to the depletion of surrounding forest by the farmlands. There is also a rich variety of waterfowl in the surrounding lagoon. The Lamanai ruins have become a sanctuary for wildlife and history.


Belize (formerly British Honduras) is a constitutional monarchy, and the northernmost Central American nation. In fact, it straddles the south-eastern rim of Mexico’s famous Yucatan peninsula, due south of Cancun. Belize has a diverse society, comprising many cultures and languages. Even though Kriol and Spanish are spoken among the population, Belize is the only country in Central America where English is the official language. Belize is bordered to the north by Mexico, south and west by Guatemala, and to the east by the Caribbean Sea. Culturally unique among its Central American neighbors, Belize is the only nation in the region with a British colonial heritage.

Location (17° 45′ 51″ N, 85° 44′ 14″ W)

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