Belize City in which country
Belize City is the largest city in Belize and is located at the mouth of the Belize River on the coast of the Caribbean. The city is the country's principal port and its financial and industrial hub and is continually frequented by cruise ships. The city was almost entirely destroyed in 1961 when Hurricane Hattie swept ashore on 31 October.
Position 17° 28'10"N, 0
Recent reports indicate that yachts have had good experiences clearing in at Belize City. Clearance can be accomplished more rapidly if the Belize port captain is called in advance of arrival on VHF Channel 16. Flying the Q flag, one can either anchor off or use the dock at the Holiday Inn Hotel.
Officials will come to the dock and complete clearance there, without boarding the yacht, with formalities taking about 15 minutes. Fees total US$50 - $10 for the Sanitation department, and $10 each "taxi fare" for 4 officials. If anchored, a customs boat will usually come alongside and the officials will board the boat, but if not, the captain should go ashore to the customs office. In this case the captain is usually accompanied back to the boat by a customs official for the necessary paperwork. The next office to be visited is immigration, which is in town north of the police station. Customs Tel. 011-501-2-73510, immigration Tel. 011-501-8-22423. The Immigration office is open on a Sunday but there is a 40USD/hour overtime charge.
For clearing out at Belize City it is necessary to purchase two special clearance forms available from Angelus Press near the police station. The first office to be visited is the port authority, which is quite far and requires a taxi ride. A charge will be made depending on the tonnage of the yacht. Customs must be cleared next, and finally immigration.
For 2014 information about clearing in in Old Belize, at the Cucumber Beach Marina, see .
The anchorage at Belize City is an open roadstead, often rolly with very poor holding.
Cucumber Beach Marina is a full-service marina off the Western Highway, just south of the town. Whilst services at the marina are good, it is rather isolated. Entrance to the marina should only be attempted at high tide (see ).
The other marinas arround the city (Holiday Inn, Raddison and Princess) are all shallow, and are relatively unprotected from the dangerous long rolling fetch. Although The Radisson Fort George Marina is useful for a short stop for supplies etc.
Belize City is quite safe by day, although keep an eye out for pickpockets. Hold-ups and theft are regular events after dark, so use a taxi, even to travel short distances (make sure you confirm the price with the driver before you get in the car).
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