Everything You Need to Know: The Great Blue Hole Belize
Your best travel guide to the islands of the Caribbean and more.
Everything You Need to Know: The Great Blue Hole BelizePosted on February 23. 2015
Simply put, there is nothing else above or below the sea quite like Belize’s Great Blue Hole. Even if you haven’t heard of it before today, chances are very strong that you have seen this circular crown jewel of the Belize Barrier Reef in online pictures or a computer screensaver at least once in your life.
Yes, the sight of the Great Blue Hole Belize is that unique and impressive. Made famous by the legendary Jacques Cousteau and his venerable sea-exploring vessel Calypso, the Great Blue Hole’s reputation has become nearly as large as the hole itself. Before you put on your gear to explore the undisputed king of the Belize diving scene, here is our guide to get you up to speed and primed for experiencing the Great Blue Hole Belize for yourself.
What: The Great Blue Hole Belize is a massive underwater sinkhole located under Belize’s blue coastal waters. It is nearly 1000 feet across and over 400 feet deep, making the Great Blue Hole the largest underwater sinkhole of its kind anywhere in the world. The Great Blue Hole was created when a series of underground caves collapsed upon each other during the last Ice Age. When the ice receded around the globe, the waters of the Caribbean filled up the Great Blue Hole with water and a legend was born.
Where: The Great Blue Hole is located near the middle of Lighthouse Reef, which is around 60 miles off the coast of Belize City.
Why: What separates the Great Blue Hole Belize from many other similar sinkholes around the globe and makes it special is its near perfect circular shape and its massive size. As a part of the Belize Barrier Reef, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it makes the perfect place to experience the best that Belize diving has to offer.
It is home to clear and warm waters and a wide range of sea fauna and flora, many of it spectacular in color or in scope, especially near the top. Frequently spotted sea life there includes, but of course is not limited to, coral, Angelfish, Butterfly Fish, vibrant Parrotfish, Caribbean Reef Sharks, and Hammerhead Sharks. Once you reach a little further below the surface, the opportunity to explore stalactites and other evidence of the Great Blue Hole’s former life as an above ground cave is also a fascinating and unique reason to visit.
When: As Belize is a year-round destination, visiting the Great Blue Hole is possible at all times of year. Visiting during Spring or Fall is a great way to save a few dollars and have a little more serenity during your trip as these are not peak seasons for travel. Summer is the rainy season in Belize, but the showers usually aren’t an impediment to experiencing the Great Blue Hole.
How: Several Belize diving outfits provide tours that include a trip to the Great Blue Hole, equipment, and an informational tutorial about the Great Blue Hole itself. The Great Blue Hole can be visited independently, but you must arrange your own transportation there before exploring and pay the fee for accessing the Great Blue Hole.
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