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“Absolutely fantastic stay!”

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Back-a-Bush Guesthouse
Ranked #11 of 23 Toledo District B&B and Inns
London
Level 5 Contributor
47 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
“Absolutely fantastic stay!”
Reviewed 6 February 2013

Back-a-bush is a peaceful farm in a small Belizian village close to Punta Gorda by bus. Elsbeth and Naud are charming, friendly and down-to-earth hosts. As previous reviews have said, food here is wholesome and tasty (we opted to have 3 meals there) and the room was clean and comfy. The farm-grown coffee was fantastic. We really enjoyed talking to Elsbeth and Naud and enjoyed exploring the village and the local Mayan ruins. I absolutely loved staying here and would highly recommend it.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Stephann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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24 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
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English first
Toronto
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 May 2012

Why they don't have more reviews, I'll never know! Back-a-Bush is the BEST and also least expensive ($30BZE/$15USD a night for a bed) and the meals are INCREDIBLE and again, very inexpensive!!! (breakfast/dinner $12BZE/$6USD; lunch $10BZE/$5USD) I hope the prices are correct, check their website just in case. I was in Toledo for 2 weeks, I stayed with Elsbeth and Naud for 3 short nights, and next time Back-a-Bush will be my main stay! The farm is wonderful, all of the animals are happy, healthy and love guests! I had my very own guide dog Diesel on my 1hr walk out to Lubaantun - a beautiful site of fallen stones of the Ancient Maya. The walk is straight through San Miguel village, and is very serene, especially at the site itself. After the hot walk back, one could either take a cold (or hot/warm) shower, or jump in the Columbia river which is about 10min walk through Back-a-Bush's farm.


Fresh farm picked fruits, home baked bread and fried jacks (or baked) with assorted jams, butter or peanut butter for breakfast - and lime aid, which I'm now addicted to back at home (drinking a litre a day!) Fresh ginger tea with lemongrass and honey was a nice treat! Lunches and dinners were amazing and if not picked from their own farm, sourced local (black beans grown by the neighbour) Elsbeth and I picked yucca flowers for lunch, and also some cactus! I'm vegan, and ate SO well there. I even had dinner packed for me on my last day, to eat during my 18hr travel home, which was very much appreciated - and also breakfast to eat during the drive transfer to PG for my early a.m. flight (which also was reasonably priced!) Speaking of the drive - they have the most comfortable vehicle, as much as I enjoyed riding in the back of pickup trucks, a cushy seat was nice!


San Miguel has a bus to and from the village/PG town about 3 times a day. There are bus schedules and information posted under the palapa at Back-a-Bush (first schedule I'd seen in two weeks!) So it is very easy to go into town for a few hours, and then return to Back-a-Bush. Naud also explained an even cheaper way for me to travel to Belize from Toronto, which was great information as this was my first venture out to another country and I have much to learn!

The Cacao Festival was happening and the closing day was held at Lubaantun on May 20th. We drove over, and got to see the theatre performance of Palenque Rojo from Mexico, which was incredible! I've posted a couple photos of the costumes.

I've only been home just a week, but have already devised plans on how and when to return. Belize is so beautiful, and Elsbeth and Naud have created a wonderful spot to stay. They treat guests like good old friends, with great food and conversation! I can't wait to go back soon!

Room Tip: 1 private room with a double bed, or a bunk house with 6-7 beds. Either way, beds are comfy and it...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled solo
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2 Thank Stacey B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxford, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 February 2012

I'm not sure where to start! Everything about this place was fantastic. I happened to be the only person staying for 2 out of the 3 nights and the owners Elsbeth and Naud made me feel like I was an old friend come to visit rather than a fee paying backpacker and kept me well entertained the whole time. Elsbeths cooking was superb - lovely healthy home-cooked food each meal. The room was clean and the bed comfortable with fresh flowers on the side (this place is obviously not the Hilton, but for a back-packers was more than adequate). The whole area is beautiful, and they have commandeered the services of a local, indigenous Maya man as their tour guide, who is the most lovely, friendly and knowledgeable tour guide one could hope to wish for. He laughed with me rather than at me when riding a horse for the first time to the local ruins. The owners can arrange most anyhing you want to do in the area with him or one of the other locals. They own 5 dogs, 2 cats, 2 horses and various other farm animals who are all lovely and very friendly. I would absolutely reccommend this place wholeheartedly and if I ever go back to Belize it will be the first place I book.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled solo
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Helpful?
2 Thank Lizzie R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Diego, California, United States
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 9 January 2012

If you are looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life then Back-a-Bush Guesthouse and Farm is the place to be! Located in the Mayan Village of San Miguel, outside of Punta Gorda, Belize, this charming guesthouse and farm is only outdone by the amazing Dutch owners Naud and Elsbeth. They welcome you on their property with open arms and fill your bellies with locally and home grown meals as well as the best coffee to be found in Belize. They offer a bunkhouse as well as a private room, and are working on an expansion of another private room that is a converted bus, the "Back-a-Bus." They will also let you camp on their land with your own tent or by renting one of theirs. Their farm is wonderful and boasts oranges, cacao (the chocolate plant), coffee plants as well as other local jungle plants. Naud will take you on a tour of the property and show you a great place to swim and cool off. Lubantuun is a nice brisk walk from the farm and the local villagers are very nice and will help you out whenever you need, just be sure to ask. Be sure to check out the Tiger Cave with Miguel, a local Mayan, who knows the ins and outs of the cave as well as the jungle. Relax, adventure and share stories and great conversations in the jungle with great people in a great location!

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Nicholas H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Burlington, Vermont
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 26 December 2011

If you are looking to experience Non-touristy Belize, amazing food, accomodating/generous/warm hosts, amazing food and culture.. Then this is the place for you! We stayed at Back-a-Bush for a week and wish it could be forever. It is situated in the small village of San Miguel, a place off the beaten path for sure. You will experience the local Mayan culture in a way that you will never forget. Elsbeth and Naud, a wonderful couple from Holland, have created a welcoming enviornment. The food is AMAZING, the best we had in Belize. They grow their own organic fruit and veggies as well as some of the best coffee you will ever have in your life. they have a pack of loving dogs, horses and whistling ducks that keep things lively. Chill in a hammock under the palapa, swim in the river or take a tour of the local caves with Miguel, a local who provided us with the best hike/ exploration of Tiger Cave. Unlike ATM and some of the other touristy hikes in Belize, we had the cave to ourselves- and Miguel was the best! His father was the oldest living Mayan in the village and passed stories and knowledge of medicinal plants onto his son. We tasted fresh cacao, saw jaguar tracks, drank from a fresh water spring, saw pottery and bone artifacts... The list goes on. As a couple who has done a considerable amount of backpacking- this is one of our favorite places we have ever been to. It's no Hilton, but if thats what you're into.. You probably won't be venturing into the jungles of Belize. Rooms are clean and decorated nicely.. Bathrooms are clean and they
have hot showers! I have nothing but amazing things to say about this wonderful place. Stray off the beaten path. Explore. Stay at Back-a-bush.. You will not regret it!

Room Tip: they have a room with a couple bunk beds and a room with a double bed
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  • Stayed January 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Shanna B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Etten-Leur
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 August 2011

This guesthouse offers you an ultimate opportunity to relax and realy get to knew a Mayan village and their locals. You wil have a warm welcome from the Dutch guesthouse owners Elsbeth and Naud, and al the animals who live at the farm. The dogs and cats are always aroud to play and get a hug. They love you, and soon you'll love them!

The double room and the dorm is clean and well protecten against mosquitos. Clean showerunits and a bathroom facility in the open air. You can't get closer to a real back-a-bush experience!

The delicious and tasteful food you can order is all provided from their own land. You can just tel your diet wishes (vegan, vegetarian) and you wil be provided with delicious, healthy, and all organic meals. Would you like to hang out in a hammock or under the palappa? Order a cold Belikin beer or some coke!

Don't expect a top end hotel with a spa, manicure service and a freezing cold airconditioned rooms. Here you'l find the real Belizean way of life. Relaxed, respectful for the beautiful nature surrounded, and lots of athentic and exiting things to see and do in and aroud the farm. Go canoeing over the river, see the Tiger cave or visit the Mayansite Lubaantun. But most of al, enjoy your sta in this wonderful, peaceful and unique guesthouse in the southern district of Belize.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank MariekeDeHaan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Ignacio, Belize
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 June 2011

Last week I stayed for 2 nights at Back-a-Bush, although the rain was poring down I had a great time!!
Back-a-Bush is the perfect spot to relax and chill out; enjoy the great food which all is grown and/or produced locally: so we had Nopales (cactus), Yucca, Calalou and freshly picked and roasted coffee from their own farm. The neighbors chicken provide the eggs and Diana (the Mennonite cow) provides the Back-a-Bush guests with delicious yoghurt, cottage-cheese and of course milk. Elsbeth and Naud prepared some delicious vegetarian meals.
For the first time in 3 years even my feet fit ON the homemade bunk-bed, so i enjoyed a sound and comfy sleep.
ohh, and let's not forget the hot shower on a cold rainy day (in the end it was only around 80F-27 C)
The company of the host is a joy! They are fun, informative and inspiring; so entertaining to share experiences coming from the same home country and living in Belize.

For sure, whenever I'll need a break again, I'll be heading to Back-a-Bush!!!

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank belisinbelize
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Back-a-Bush Guesthouse

Property: Back-a-Bush Guesthouse
Address: San Miguel, Belize
Region: Belize > Toledo District
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 23 B&Bs / Inns in Toledo District
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Guesthouse on organic permaculture farm in Maya village on river. We serve home grown coffee and delicious home cooked meals, vegans/vegetarians/meat eaters welcome. We offer camping under a large thatch with your own tent (10 $ BZ) or rent our tent (20 $ BZ), 2 rooms with shared bath (60 $ BZ and 70 $ BZ double occupancy) and a private spacious cabin with 2 singles and a double bed, en suite bathroom (1 p. 60 $ BZ, 2 p. 100 $ BZ, 3 p. 130 $ BZ, 4 p. 150 $ BZ) with hot shower, sink and private porch. All rooms have fans and outlets. Hot showers, 24 h. electricity, free wifi, safe and clean. Relax in the hammock and read a book or play a game on the palapa. Maya ruins Lubaantun and Nim Li Punit and Tiger cave nearby, village/farm/river tours, jungle trails for adventurous travelers. Easy to reach by village bus, twice daily. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Back-a-Bush Guesthouse Belize/Toledo District

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