Villages

Strong Villages is proud to be working in the Toledo District of Belize, Central America. Village life is rich and the people wonderfully curious, deeply appreciative and incredibly loving.

Explore some of the villages we serve:

Barranco
Blue Creek
Indian Creek
Laguna
Pueblo Viejo
San Antonio
San Jose
San Miguel
San Pedro
Santa Elena
Yemeri Grove

Belize Villages-Toldeo District

Barranco Village
Name: Barranco Village
Ancestry: Garifuna and African descent
Location: Toledo District, Belize, Central America

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A unique experience is offered in the Barranco area, as it is the only village settled by the Garifuna people. In addition to the fascinating chance to observe and participate in the daily life of a Garifuna village, Barranco‘s coastal location enables the visitor to engage in activities centered on the sea, such as fishing and swimming. It offers easy access by boat to the newly declared Sarstoon-Temash National Park, a haven for exotic wildlife. The village population is around 200. In Barranco one may Kayak in the bay and river, have a Howler monkey spotting, hear Garifuna drumming and visit Gariffuna temples.

Source: T.E.A. Eco Trail Booklet
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Blue Creek Village
Name: Blue Creek Village
Ancestry: Mopan and Kek’chi Mayan Indian
Location: Toledo District, Belize, Central America

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Spanning the luminescent waters of Blue Creek, this Mopan and Kek’chi village boasts an intriguing cave a short walk away, excellent swimming in a number of spots, and a special feature – a forest canopy walk which allows the physically fit visitor to experience the wonders of the Toledo rainforest from dizzying heights! Blue Creek was originally known as Rio Blanco when the first families settled here in 1925. Around 1950, families from Aguacate and San Antonio came here and the name was changed to reflect the beauty of the river‘s bluish color.

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Indian Creek Village
Name: Indian Creek Village
Ancestry: Kek’chi Mayan Indian
Location:Toledo District, Belize, Central America

Mar 2016 Belize 21
Indian Creek Village is a quaint village surrounded by hills only 12 miles from Punta Gorda. It nestles on the edge of an extensive wetland area which harbors a large variety of bird, plant and animal life. Options include the Nim Li Punit, “The Big Hat” archeological site with its ball courts, stelea, commanding view of the countryside, cave visits and canoeing on the peaceful Moho River.

Indian Creek is a Kek’chi community of about 250 residents.

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Laguna Village
Name: Laguna Village
Ancestry: Kek’chi Mayan Indian
Location:Toledo District, Belize, Central America

Laguna

Laguna is a quaint village surrounded by hills only 12 miles from Punta Gorda. It nestles on the edge of an extensive wetland area which harbors a large variety of bird, plant and animal life. Laguna is a Kek’chi community of about 250 residents.

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Pueblo Viejo Village
Name: Pueblo Viejo
Ancestry: Mopan Mayan Indian
Location:Toledo District, Belize, Central America

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A quiet, predominantly Mopan village, this is the farthest village from Punta Gorda; and the closest to the Guatemalan border. Its many attractions include Pueblo Viejo waterfall, high canopy rain forest and the stunning views from the peak of a nearby mountain. Lucky visitors may meet Dr. Alfred Lau, a renowned botanist who has focused much of his work in this vicinity in recognition of the many unusual plants found in the undisturbed rain forest.

Translated from Spanish to mean “Old Town”, Pueblo Viejo was the first village to be founded in Southern Belize in recent times. Just 7 miles from the Guatemalan border, it is unknown exactly when people first settled in this village. 85% of the village is Mopan and the population is around 700.

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San Antonio Village
Name: San Antonio Village
Ancestry: Spanish and Mopan Mayan Indian
Location: Toledo District, Belize, Central America

San-Antonio

It is the largest Maya settlement in Belize, consisting of around 2000, mainly, Mopan Mayans. Their annual festival begins on August 25th. The festival, known as the Deer Dance, includes music, dancing, costumes, greasy pole and the burning of incense. The largest town in the interior of Toledo District, San Antonio visitors can enjoy a wide array of activities, including hikes to a cave, a waterfall and horseback riding.

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San Jose Village
Name: San Jose
Ancestry: Mopan Mayan Indian
Location: Toledo District, Belize, Central America

Far from the “hustle and bustle” of Punta Gorda, San Jose is set in a particularly beautiful range of verdant hills near the Guatemalan border. This village was formed by people coming from San Antonio and the surrounding jungle area. A public meeting was held in 1954 and the village was named San Jose after the feast of Saint Joseph, held on March 19th, which is celebrated for three days by eating Caldos (local chicken or pork stew) and dancing to the Marimba and harp.

Many farmers practice organic farming methods in San Jose, and the jungle around it is said to be the most rich and diverse in the whole of Central America. Today, the village of about 800 is entirely Mopan.

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San Miguel Village
Name: San Miguel
Ancestry: Kek’chi Mayan Indian
Location: Toledo District, Belize, Central America

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Conveniently located near the Southern Highway, the picturesque Kek’chi village of San Miguel offers easy access to the ancient Mayan ruins at Lubaantun, alleged home of the Crystal Skull, as well as canoeing on the upper Rio Grande and visits to a cave.

In 1950, a small group of Kek’chi migrated eastwards from Santa Theresa looking for more fertile soil. They asked the people of San Pedro Columbia for some land and were given 150 acres across the Columbia River. They brought with them a statue of Saint Michael, after whom the village was named – the statue can still be seen in the church today. The village is almost exclusively Kek’chi, with a population of around 400.

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San Pedro Village
Name: San Pedro Columbia
Ancestry: Mopan and Kek’chi Mayan Indian
Location: Toledo District, Belize, Central America

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This delightful village of 800 people offers access to a wide range of attractions, with something to suit every interest and taste. Options include exploring the recently re-stored Lubaantun archaeological site with its three ball courts and commanding view of the countryside, cave visits and canoeing on the peaceful Columbia River.

The first people in this century to settle in the area in 1905 were from Alta Verapaz region of Guatemala. Today, nearly 90% of the community is Kek’chi with a small number of Mopan and other groups.

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Santa Elena Village
Name: Santa Elena
Ancestry: Mopan and Kek’chi Mayan Indian
Location: Toledo District, Belize, Central America

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Santa Elena, a small Mopan village of about 200 people, is ideally situated to allow visitors to reach the spectacular Rio Blanco Falls, which have been granted national park status by the Government of Belize. Still in a pristine and undeveloped state, these falls and surrounding high canopy rainforest are a must for every visitor to interior Toledo district.

This settlement, like Blue Creek, was previously known as Rio Blanco after the river and waterfall that runs next to the village. As more families moved here from San Antonio, a statue of Santa Elena was brought and the village name was changed. Today, 95% are Mopan with a small number of Kek’chi families.

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Yemeri Grove Village
Name: Yemeri Grove
Ancestry: Creole, East Indian, Spanish and Mayan
Location:Toledo District, Belize, Central America

Yemeri Grove

The population is a mixture of Creole, Maya, East Indian, Garifuna and Chinese people. Almost 210 miles by road from Belize City, it is near Punta Gorda, the last sizable settlement in Southern Belize. The road from Yemeri Grove winds into Punta Gorda and follows the shoreline.

Various fruit trees, especially mangoes, line the streets. Most small homes are made of wood and sit on stilts. It is also the home of Dos Amigos Dental and Medical Clinic, where Strong Villages stays on their dental and medical trips into the country.

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