In the deep south of Toledo, the coastal town of Punta Gorda is starting to draw visitors from around the world looking for a beautiful home base while they explore the culture found in the surrounding Mayan villages and the remote Southern Cayes of Belize. The town spreads across the Gulf of Honduras, and the unassuming character of this charming community has made it a favorite for many local travelers.
Each week, villagers from Toledo’s mostly Mayan settlements come to Punta Gorda to visit the markets – buying and selling homemade wares and cooking local barbecue in the triangular park located in the centre of town. The centre is recognized by a distinctive blue and white cloc tower.
Although Punta Gorda doesn’t have the beaches of Placencia, the calm waters of the gulf can be accessed by visitors here thanks to the plenty of docks lining the coast. Fishing is still a key industry in Punta Gorda, and tourists can sample the fresh seafood at many of the restaurants and cafés within the community.
Many of the hostels and hotels in Punta Gorda boast spectacular ocean views, but there are also jungle accommodations available in the area. A hostel here gives visitors a great opportunity to explore the down and celebrate some of the yearly festivals with the locals – honoring some of Punta Gorda’s greatest export, cacao and chocolate.
Buses are available to Belize City on a daily basis, but there is a small airport here that receives domestic flights for tourists who hope to get to their hostel or hotel in Punta Gorda without taking a trip across the landscape. Water taxis also connect Punta Gorda to Guatemala. Within the community, transportation is unnecessary – Punta Gorda has only five main streets, and bikes can be rented from one of the town’s local restaurants.
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