If you are like me, you use tripadvisor religiously to plan a trip, and want the straight facts. So I will do my best. We flew from Newark to Belize city on United. They have a nonstop flight once a day. Belize is in mountain time. So leave 8 am and arrive there at 12pm their time. Clearing custom takes 20 minutes. Then you go through double doors for connecting flight. We flew Maya air to Placencia. It was fine. Tropic air has newer planes, but I didn't know that when booking. Each flight we flew in a 12 seat Cessna cargo plane. Flight was about 100 each way per person. 25 minute flight time. Airport in Placencia is tiny. You get your bags right away. At the airport we had Evan waiting. He runs Belize Nirvana. It a 5 suite/ bedroom hotel right on the water in the village. We stayed in the morning glory suite. It was spotless, new, and had all the amenities. The location is in the middle of the village. So everything was a 5-10 minute walk. This has to be the nicest place to stay right in the village. Chabil Mar is about a 20 minute walk to the village. Turtle Inn is next to it, so the same. Placencia Hotel is a 20 minute drive ( I timed it). Roberts Grove and Laru Beyu is a 10 minute drive. If you want a resort then stay at any of those. Wild Orchid also looked really nice ( 10 minute drive). We wanted to walk to everything, and try the local restaurants. There are places to rent golf carts, I heard they are about 50 dollars a day.
Our main goal for this trip was to see the whale sharks. We planned our trip around the full moon. We booked our diving with Splash. Diving isn't cheap here. About 225 for 2 tank dive but this is an all day excursion. That is to see the whale sharks. It is about 150 to do silk cayes. Fuel is expensive and reef is hour out. First day we went to silk cayes. Nice dives. You have lunch on a small deserted island. We did the same trip the following day but also went searching for the whale sharks. Whales were still outside the reef, so we could only snorkel. We found 3 whales. It was amazing. I can't believe how lucky we were to see them. It was worth every penny to see these creatures. I would definitely recommend diving with Splash.
Restaurants: these are just some we tried
Wendy's---(not fast food). This was alright. We went for appetizers. It was fair enough.
Barefoot Bar- good ambiance on the beach. Food was good. Plenty of drink choices.
Tipsy Tuna-- next door to barefoot bar. They have a wall separating them. These are the two liveliest places in Placencia at night they have live music and cheap happy hours.
Secret Garden-- great food. I would definitely recommend eating here it is more upscale than the other restaurants, but you can still wear shorts. Nobody is fancy in this village. Leave the sparkles and heels at home.
Tutti frutti-- amazing gelato
Brenda's-- this is the cooking shack down by the marina. End of the village. Brenda is an amazing cook. She does fresh fish. It was less than 10dollars for a huge plate of food. Worth it to try.
The Shak-- just had an appetizer here. It was pretty good. They have a great smoothie list. Nice place for a break from the heat.
Omar's -- husband went here. He said it is mostly fish-- excellent he said.
Prices are very reasonable at all the restaurants. They all accept American money. Fixed exchange of 2:1. I saw 2 ATMs in the village.
Our last day we signed up with ocean motion to do zip line / cave tubing. It is a 2.5 hour drive each way. Zip lining was alright. Not very long runs. You could skip to be honest. The cave tubing was amazing. That was cool. You do need to walk your tube about 30 minutes before you begin. It was good to see the inland. Expensive tour because only two of us, but worth it because we got to see some of the country.
Trip was great-- I definitely would recommend Placencia.