As I write, I’m in Placencia—the remote, but very popular, fishing village in Southern Belize. I am lucky enough to be spending some time living on a sailboat in Robert’s Grove Marina—a wonderful opportunity I am very grateful for!
I get a lot of questions about what is legal in Belize and what laws are the same, or different, between the U.S. and Belize. This can be a tricky answer because in some ways, Belize is a lot like the Wild West—you can beg for forgiveness instead of asking for permission. What some people get away with is not what others get away with and the vast majority of questions have so many possible outcomes that it is a complicated matrix. I always recommend that you know the laws and follow them in any foreign country. It is easy to lose yourself in a vacation atmosphere and forget that you cannot assume your individual rights, protections, expectations of consistency in law enforcement and courts, let alone jail, are the world norm.
Belize has had an admirable rebound from COVID. There have been countless positives in the news over the last year and a half about life here in Belize. And a lot of this positive news has come from some unexpected sources.
The topic of building in Belize could be its own book—and in fact, there are several books on Amazon written by expats which are great resources for in-depth information. The Belize Expats Facebook group is another useful place to get up-to-date recommendations and to have your questions answered. Over the years, I have been involved in numerous construction projects and the building of a small resort, and have learned that there are some unique-to-Belize learning curves to help prevent unnecessary hardship and headaches.
Belize has been popular with expats for decades and one of the biggest reasons why is the range of living options in the country. Whether you are looking for a self-sustaining farm in the mountains, a cabin in the rainforest, a simple beach cabana, or your dream home on the beach, you can find it in Belize.
Belize is a small country with very low population density—about 380,000 people living in a country about the size of New Jersey. Like everywhere in the world, there are places in Belize that are comfortable and feel safe for the vast majority of people, and other places that are better for more experienced travelers and people that have spent a considerable amount of time in the country.
Given what has transpired in the past year and the immense changes to people’s working patterns, everybody wants to learn more about opportunities for digital nomads. I’ve received countless questions on the topic and I’m happy to report some exciting prospects coming up in Belize.
The English-speaking country of Belize has a lot going for it. For a tiny country, it packs a big wallop when it comes to charm and scenery. For the would-be expat—especially if you're looking for real value—there are many areas deserving of your attention. Places where you can live the laidback, Caribbean lifestyle of your dreams.
Ambergris Caye, a 25-mile island situated in northern Belize, is a popular spot for both tourists and expats. The island has one town, the lively and sometimes crowded San Pedro, located in the southern part of the island. Within San Pedro, you’ll find several neighborhoods, each with their own personality and with varying populations of locals, expats, and tourists.
In early adulthood, Lee Nyhus traveled extensively to less-visited corners of the globe, including spending a year backpacking around Africa. Even when it came time to settle down for a while, she chose what was, at that time, a somewhat unusual destination for American expats: Tokyo.