Why Visit Punta Gorda, Belize

Punta Gorda is a fishing town on the Caribbean coast of southern Belize. It’s a gateway to the Port Honduras Marine Reserve, lying offshore, and Guatemala. Nearby dive sites on the Belize Barrier Reef are home to turtles and whale sharks. Payne’s Creek National Park has coastal wetlands and numerous bird species. Inland are the ruined Maya city of Lubaantun and waterfalls in Rio Blanco National Park.
Elevation: 4.5 m
Weather: 30°C, Wind E at 13 km/h, 73% Humidity
Population: 5,351 (2010)
Mayor: Fern Gutierrez (UDP)
Local time: Monday 18:03

Punta Gorda, known locally as P.G., is the capital and largest town of Toledo District in southern Belize. Punta Gorda is the southernmost sizable town in the nation, with a population of about 5,000 people. Although the town bears a Spanish name, its inhabitants are mostly Kriol/English-speaking, and are primarily of Garifuna, East Indian, Kriol, and Maya descent.

Punta Gorda is a seaport and fishing town on the Caribbean Sea. It was a small fishing village before it was settled by a number of Garifuna emigrants from Honduras in 1823. The Garifuna refer to the town as Peini. The town is about fifteen feet above sea level.Punta Gorda is the main point of transportation for people visiting the Toledo district and the offshore southern cayes. There is a small airport which serves domestic flights from Maya Island Air and Tropic Air. James Bus Line is based in Punta Gorda and offers a regular service to points north such as Independence, Dangriga, Belmopan, and Belize City. Water taxis offer daily crossings to Puerto Barrios and twice weekly service to Livingston in Guatemala. Unlike the purpose-built water taxis plying the routes between Belize city and the northern cays, the services from Punta Gorda are provided by small, open boats.

Tourism
There are several hotels in Punta Gorda that draw tourists with their ocean views. Punta Gorda is also a gateway to several well-regarded jungle accommodations, including Cotton Tree Lodge, The Lodge at Big Falls, Belcampo Lodge, and Hickatee Cottages. Every May the town hosts the Toledo Cacao Festival, held over the Commonwealth Day holiday weekend, which celebrates Toledo district's ancient and modern-day links with cacao and chocolate.


Notable people

The town is served by Punta Gorda Hospital.
Notable people from Punta Gorda include paranda musician Paul Nabor and Belize's "Queen of Brukdown", Leela Vernon.


Religion
St. Peter Claver Catholic parish, with a large elementary school, serves the predominantly Catholic population of the town.



Top Tours & Activities in Punta Gorda

Drumming, Dancing & Dinner in Southern BelizeCome and enjoy a professional Garifuna drumming performance under the beautiful thatch palapa, learn some of the dance moves, and then relax with a traditional meal of "hudut" (fish fillet sauteed in fresh coconut milk served with mashed plantain).

Marine Conservation SCUBA Trip in Belize
Duration 5 days
Enjoy a one-of-a-kind marine conservation diving experience on a small private island surrounded by turquoise coral seas situated on the Belize Barrier Reef. World class diving, plentiful home cooked food and fun friendly people await you!

Punta Gorda Half-Day Garifuna Culture & Drum Class Tour
Get an in-depth insight into Garifuna culture on a 3.5-hour tour in Punta Gorda, and learn about the their drumming and dancing traditions. Learn how to make and play the beautiful drums at a hands-on workshop, and enjoy a group performance and meal.


Drumming Lesson in Punta Gorda

After giving you an insight into the unique Garifuna culture, a master drummer will teach you how to play a basic rhythm on a large Segunda drum. When you’ve mastered the beat, he’ll play along with you and sing, explaining the music as you learn.

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