Top Ten Central America Classic Adventures

Canoe Community Baboon Sanctuary: Belize

Don't fret: Those eerie, rasping calls booming out of the woods are coming from black howler monkeys, not the aggressive baboon. A quirk of the local Creole dialect is that monkeys are called baboons, which are native only to Africa. Thus the name of a unique sanctuary for these black howlers, an endangered species that thrives along the Belize River. This is an easy day trip from Belize City, 30 miles to the southeast, or you can spend the night with a local family or in a nearby lodge. Hire one of the knowledgable community guides, who can find the monkeys and describe their habits. Besides numerous hiking trails, the river is a recommended mode of travel. Rent a powerboat or canoe in Bermudian Landing, the sanctuary's main village, where you're required to check in at the excellent museum and visitors' center. Bring binoculars or telephoto camera lenses.


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