We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Shark Ray via water or air?

San Antonio, Texas
Level Contributor
71 posts
5 reviews
Save Topic
Shark Ray via water or air?

On our cruise to Belize City there are two snorkel excursions to Shark Ray Alley. One is 4 1/2 hours on a water taxi with some time in Caye Caulker. The other lasts 5 hours, involves a taxi ride to the airport, and a little time in San Pedro.

An aerial view and time in San Pedro would of course be nice but we know the highlight is snorkeling. Has anyone had experience with both excursions to know if the air trip is really any better?

Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
190 posts
253 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Shark Ray via water or air?

When I visited San Pedro I specifically opted for getting there via air. That had more to do with the fact that #1 I get seasick and wanted to eliminate traveling in a boat if I had a choice, and #2 I wanted to just get there and be done with it. The water taxi is much cheaper, but if you're coming in for technically several hours on a cruise ship you would be better served getting to San Pedro via air. It's a 30-minute flight out of Belize City, the flight is nice and peaceful with a GORGEOUS aerial view, and it gives you more time in San Pedro. You can walk around downtown and take a look at some of the stores, get some ice cream and have lunch. I LOVE Elvi's Kitchen and would recommend it to anyone. Do you really want to spend most of your time getting there or being there??

San Antonio, Texas
Level Contributor
71 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Shark Ray via water or air?

I came to those EXACT same conclusions but couldn't find ANY reviews of the air trip. One concern was that with so little interest we might get stuck doing nothing if the excursion wasn't filled when we arrived. I decided to take the chance and we are signed up. Can't wait. Thanks for the good info!

Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
190 posts
253 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Shark Ray via water or air?

No problem! I'm glad you signed up for the Hol Chan snorkel. It's beautiful if you get a chance to experience it, and if not you can pass your time in San Pedro. Make sure you get some homemade ice cream from Mannelly's - they're famous for their coconut. San Pedro is pretty cool and it reminds me of the Caribbean. You won't be disappointed for having taken the flight. Have a GREAT time!!!!

7 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: Shark Ray via water or air?

Be careful if you are taking a taxi from main airport, that means time in Belize City? That is not a city you want to walk around in as a tourist. If you are taking a water taxi from mainland to islands, sit by windows toward back so ride will not be quite as bumpy. Any time on the water is worth it . Lots of water and sun screen! Shark Ray Alley is an experience not to be missed. If it also includes Hol Chan. Do It! If you are going to Caye Caulker, be sure to enjoy the Split. Great place for cool drinks, good people and perfect swim/snorkel spot. Enjoy!

belize
Destination Expert
for Belize, Placencia, Ambergris Caye, Cayo, San Ignacio
Level Contributor
6,903 posts
10 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Shark Ray via water or air?

You have so little time in Belize, I would fly back and forth, especially since you are arriving on a boat and will have more have time to walk around San Pedro town and get a feel for the caye

San Antonio, Texas
Level Contributor
71 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Shark Ray via water or air?

Ecological Tours made several mistakes and we did not get to go. First, they scheduled our tour time for 7:30 AM when our ship wasn't scheduled to arrive in port until 8:00 AM (which has always been the ship's arrival time). Then they didn't allow for the hour necessary to tender from the ship to shore (5 miles on a small boat). Next, we waited in the mobbed line (if you can even call it that) at their tiny building on shore for 25 minutes before being able to talk to anyone. Others in line for different tours were also confused about whether there was one line or three. Finally, even as late as we were, we still could have made it to the tour in San Pedro but our airline seats had been given away.

We expected this to be one of the highlights of our week-long trip. Ecological Tours doesn't seem capable of scheduling dinner for 3 at McDonalds, much-less a tour for cruise ship passengers. I'll have to consider this an excuse to go back and try again.

7. Re: Shark Ray via water or air?

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

TripAdvisor staff removed this post because it did not meet TripAdvisor's forum posting guidelines with prohibiting self-promotional advertising or solicitation.

We ask all of our members to keep their forum messages free of self-promoting advertisements or solicitation of any kind - members affiliated with any tourism-related business should not include commercial contact information or URLs in their forum messages.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 10 April 2013, 19:21
belize
Destination Expert
for Belize, Placencia, Ambergris Caye, Cayo, San Ignacio
Level Contributor
6,903 posts
10 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Shark Ray via water or air?

Litebright-Ecologic may have made mistakes; I don't know what your arrangements with them were, but I work with them often and they do a great job. I do not work with cruise ship passengers for a few reasons, as per your issues above. Ship time and local time are not the same; cruise ships hold back the passengers who have not booked thru the ship and are the last to arrive in port, leaving them less time on shore and making exact meeting time and place confusing. I hope you return as an overnight visitor and able to see both reef and rainforest.

San Antonio, Texas
Level Contributor
71 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Shark Ray via water or air?

Thanks, I will return. People don't realize what an amazing place Belize is.

I understand how mistakes can be made, I make a lot myself. The series of mistakes along with the inefficient way large groups of visitors are handled at the dock demonstrates to me that Ecological can not effectively manage what they have without making serious changes.

Even though there was little for us to see or do in Belize City other than look through souvenir shops, our brief visit made me want to come back for several days to see the jungle and spend time on one of the amazing islands.

Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
190 posts
253 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Shark Ray via water or air?

LiteBright01, I'm sorry to hear you missed your tour of San Pedro! That sucks because Ambergris Caye is honestly a beautiful island. I was born and raised in the Caribbean and it definitely has that type of flavor. You certainly have the right attitude about it - simply plan a trip directly to Belize for the week. That's how I did my trip and it's certainly worth it. I spent the first half of my week in the Cayo District where I visited ATM cave, did a day trip to Guatemala for Tikal, went cave tubing/river tubing at Jaguar Paw, and went horseback riding in Cristo Rey before traveling to San Pedro on Ambergris Caye. While there I snorkeled Hol Chan and Shark Ray Alley before relaxing for the rest of my trip with indulgent spa treatments. I hope I'm making your mouth water to consider your next trip!!!! :o)