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Mexico is the third-largest country in Latin America and the 11th most populous country in the world. It has diverse landscapes, including mountains, deserts, and extensive coastlines along the Pacific Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean Sea.
Mexico is significantly larger and more populous than Belize, which is smaller both in terms of land area and population, with around 400,000 residents.
Both countries boast stunning natural landscapes. Mexico offers diverse environments, from beaches along the Pacific and Caribbean coasts to mountains, deserts, and lush jungles. Belize, known for its barrier reef and cayes, has beautiful coastal areas, as well as rainforests and Mayan ruins inland.
✅ Belize or Cancun: Where to spend your vacation?
Travel resources for your trip to Mexico and Belize
- Accommodations – I use Booking
- Flights – I use CheapAir
- Travel insurance – I use SafetyWing
- Guided tours in Belize and Mexico – I use Viator
- Car rentals in Belize and Mexico – I use DiscoverCars
Where is Belize?
Belize is located in Central America along the Eastern Caribbean Coast. It shares land borders with Mexico’s State of Quintana Roo to the north and the Department of Peten in Guatemala to the west. Belize also has a maritime border with Honduras.
Where is Mexico?
Mexico is a country located in North America. It is bordered to the north by the United States, to the south and west by the Pacific Ocean, to the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea, and the east by the Gulf of Mexico. The capital of the country is Mexico City located in the central part.
What is the difference between Belize and Mexico?
Belize and Mexico are neighboring countries in Central America, but they differ in various aspects, including size, population, culture, history, and language.
Belize vs Mexico: Culture
Belize has a unique cultural mix influenced by African, Mayan, European, and Caribbean cultures. The Garifuna and Maya are prominent ethnic groups, contributing to the country’s cultural diversity.
Mexico’s culture is a rich blend of indigenous and Spanish influences. It has a long history, with civilizations like the Aztecs and Maya contributing to its cultural heritage. Mexico also has a significant mestizo population, representing a mix of indigenous and European ancestry.
Belize vs Mexico: Economy
Belize has a smaller and less diversified economy compared to Mexico. Tourism, agriculture, and services are key economic sectors. Mexico has one of the largest and most diversified economies in Latin America. It has a robust manufacturing industry, significant natural resources, and a thriving tourism sector.
Belize vs Mexico: travel cost
Mexico has better options for budget travelers.
If you are traveling on a budget in Mexico, you can choose from less expensive accommodations, and choose from many budget-friendly vacation spots like Bacalar, Campeche and Merida. Belize has more limited options for budget travelers, and even the most modest accommodations and food can be pricey.
Believe vs Cancun currency:
In Mexico, the official currency is the Mexican Peso (MXN). In Belize, the official currency is the Belize Dollar (BZD). While some businesses in tourist areas may accept U.S. dollars, you should use Belizean dollars for transactions to avoid paying tourist prices.
Belize vs Mexico: History
Belize was a British colony known as British Honduras until it gained independence in 1981. The country has a history of Mayan civilization and European colonization. Mexico has a complex history, including pre-Columbian civilizations like the Aztecs and Maya, Spanish colonization, and a struggle for independence in the early 19th century.
Belize is known for its natural beauty, coral reefs, and archaeological sites like Caracol, Altun-Ha and Xunantunich. Popular tourist destinations include Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker, Placencia and the Blue Hole.
Best places to visit in Belize
1. Great Blue Hole
A world-famous dive site, the Great Blue Hole is a massive underwater sinkhole located off the coast of Belize. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a must-visit for divers.
2. Ambergris Caye
The largest island in Belize, Ambergris Caye is known for its beautiful beaches, vibrant marine life, and the lively town of San Pedro. It’s a popular destination for snorkeling, diving, and water sports.
3. Caye Caulker
A smaller and more relaxed island compared to Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker is known for its laid-back atmosphere, colorful streets, and the famous Split, a natural channel on the island.
4. Placencia Peninsula
A long, narrow peninsula with beautiful beaches, Placencia offers a relaxed coastal atmosphere. It’s known for its charming village, diverse marine life, and the annual Placencia Lobsterfest.
✅ Read: Best resorts in Placencia
5. Lamanai Archaeological Reserve
Explore the ancient Maya city of Lamanai, located along the New River. The site features impressive ruins, including temples and ceremonial structures.
6. Actun Tunichil Muknal (ATM) Cave
For adventure seekers and history enthusiasts, the ATM Cave offers a unique experience. It’s an ancient Maya burial site with well-preserved artifacts and skeletal remains.
Another notable Maya archaeological site, Xunantunich features the iconic El Castillo pyramid, providing panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.
8. Caracol Archaeological Reserve
One of the largest Maya sites in Belize, Caracol boasts an extensive complex of pyramids, temples, and residential areas. It’s surrounded by lush rainforest.
9. Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary
Known as the world’s first jaguar preserve, Cockscomb Basin offers hiking trails, waterfalls, and an opportunity to experience Belize’s diverse flora and fauna.
Best Places To Visit in Mexico
Mexico offers a wide range of tourist destinations, from the beaches of Cancun, Playa del Carmen and Tulum to historical sites like Chichen Itza, vibrant cities like Mexico City, and the colonial charm of places like Oaxaca, San Miguel de Allende and Guanajuato.
Mexico City offers a mix of rich history, culture, and modern amenities. Explore historic sites like the Zocalo and the National Palace, visit world-class museums like the Frida Kahlo Museum, and enjoy the vibrant neighborhoods.
Belize vs Mexico: Beaches
Mexico has a vast coastline along the Pacific Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean Sea. Belize, located on the eastern coast of Central America, also boasts picturesque beaches along the Caribbean Sea. Belizean beaches are known for their pristine coral reefs, making them ideal for snorkeling and diving enthusiasts. Belize also has a more laid-back atmosphere compared to some of the busier tourist areas in Mexico.
Mexico offers a great variety when it comes to beaches. Popular beach destinations in Mexico include Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Tulum, Puerto Vallarta, and Mazunte. Mexico’s beaches boast soft white sand, clear turquoise waters, and a variety of water activities.
It’s known for its excellent surfing conditions, particularly in places like Puerto Escondido on the Pacific Coast. The waves here attract surfers from around the world.
Belize beaches are located along the Caribbean Coast. The country is home to the second-largest barrier reef in the world, the Belize Barrier Reef. This makes the beaches unique as they often feature coral formations just off the shore. The barrier reef provides excellent opportunities for snorkeling and diving right from the beach.
Belize vs Mexico: food
Mexican cuisine is known for its robust and spicy flavors. If you enjoy dishes with chili peppers, cilantro, and a variety of spices, Mexican food might be more to your liking. Belizean cuisine, especially in coastal areas, has Caribbean influences.
If you appreciate dishes with coconut, tropical fruits, and seafood, you might enjoy Belizean flavors. While Belizean food can have some heat, it tends to be milder compared to some of the spicier Mexican dishes. If you have a lower tolerance for spicy foods, Belizean cuisine might be a good choice.
- Tacos: Perhaps one of the most iconic Mexican dishes, tacos come in various forms, filled with various ingredients and topped with salsa, guacamole, and other condiments.
- Tamales: Steamed or boiled pockets of masa (corn dough) filled with meats, cheese, or chilies, often wrapped in banana leaves or corn husks.
- Enchiladas: Rolled tortillas filled with various ingredients like beans, or cheese, topped with chili sauce and melted cheese.
- Mole: A rich and complex sauce made with chocolate, chilies, and various spices, often served with chicken or turkey.
- Ceviche: Fresh raw fish or seafood marinated in citrus juices, often mixed with tomatoes, onions, cilantro, and chili peppers.
- Rice and Beans: A staple dish in Belize, often cooked with coconut milk and served with stewed chicken, pork, or fish.
- Fry Jacks: Deep-fried dough is usually served at breakfast, sometimes filled with beans, cheese, or other ingredients.
- Conch Fritters: Fritters made from conch meat, a type of sea snail, seasoned and deep-fried.
- Belizean Tamales: Similar to Mexican tamales, Belizean tamales are often made with corn masa and filled with chicken, pork, or beans.
Mexico vs Belize: safety
While Mexico has a higher crime rate than Belize, many of its popular destinations, like Cancun, Playa del Carmen, and Puerto Vallarta, are generally safe for tourists with well-established tourism infrastructures and security measures.
While coastal parts of Mexico are generally safe, some border areas and regions experiencing drug-related violence may have heightened risks.
Belize City has experienced higher crime rates compared to other parts of the country, many tourists visit without any issues. Exercise standard urban safety precautions, such as avoiding poorly lit areas at night. Tourist areas, especially popular destinations like Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker, have a generally low crime rate.
Mexico often makes headlines for its gang-related violence, which makes many question whether the country is safe to visit. While not all of Mexico is safe for travel, popular areas like Cabo San Lucas, Tulum, Bacalar, and Sayulita are perfectly safe for travelers. Another popular location in the country is Mexico City, which has become a traveler’s favorite in recent years.
Belize is a small nation in Central America that’s known as a relatively safe destination. As a visitor, you are fairly safe in Belize as long as you stay away from bad parts of Belize City where most crime takes place, and exercise reasonable caution in popular tourist destinations, you should be fine.
The most common type of crime that affects travelers in Belize is petty theft and tourist scams, especially in coastal towns like San Pedro, Caye Caulker, and Placencia. Always be wary of overly good deals, carefully count your change, and remember that if something is too good to be true, it probably is.
Get a travel insurance for your trip
Consider World Nomads insurance that will protect you in case of lost or stolen luggage, accidents, hospital visits, and many other unforeseen events. Another option is Safety Wing, which is perfect for long-term travelers who plan to stay in Belize for a couple of weeks.
Belize vs Mexico: FAQ’s
Is Belize cheaper than Mexico?
The cost of living in Belize is generally higher than in Mexico and most Central American countries. While some items may be more expensive due to the country’s reliance on imports, there are affordable options, especially when it comes to local food and transportation.
Is Belize safer than Mexico?
Belize is safer than Mexico, but it’s also much smaller. The size of Belize is only a tiny portion of Mexico’s size, so it’s not a fair comparison between the tow countries.
Is Belize or Cabo better?
Belize is known for its stunning natural landscapes, including the Great Blue Hole, coral reefs, rainforests, and ancient Maya ruins. Cabo is renowned for its luxurious beach resorts, particularly along the corridor between Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo.
Cabo has a lively nightlife scene, with a variety of bars, clubs, and entertainment options. It’s a destination known for its vibrant party atmosphere, while Belize is more about a diverse cultural landscape with influences from Creole, Garifuna, Maya, Mestizo, and other communities.
What is the relationship between Mexico and Belize?
Mexico and Belize are neighboring countries in Central America. They share a border that is approximately 250 kilometers (about 155 miles) long.