San Antonio and Dangriga, Belize

Took an interesting trip to San Antonio, Belize. It’s in the Toledo District of Belize, and consists mostly of Mayan people who fled Guatemala. In the boonies, and if I had continued after the dirt road I was on, it would have taken me to Guatemala.

First picture, the dirt road in. I have to get it through my thick skull, that these “off the beaten path” roads are a challenge. Rocks, solid granite jutting from the ground, washed out ares covered with rocks the side of my head. And there was traffic!! Absolutely amazing!

Road into San Antonio, Belize

This little car , Toyota Tercel, is a champ!

Jungle on the right and left, and one electrical line going into the town. Mostly small little farms, a few orange groves. Other than that, not much there. The car I am driving, a Toyota Tercel, is a real champ. Here’s a picture that shows you the size of the growth on each side of the road.

The only building of any size in this little town is a church built-in 1956. School was just letting out, and you see the children playing around the front of the church. A school teacher told me that the rocks used to build the church brought in by the Mayans, one stone at a time. Now it took me about 45 min. to an hour to reach this from the main road!

Church3 in San Antonio

San Antonio Church 2

Church in San Antonio

Playing in front of Church

Here are a couple of kids playing in front of the church. Wanted their picture taken. What the heck!

Not as friendly as other area of the country. Got called gringo, given the finger, asked what am I doing in the town. But, being off the beaten path, not the most “robust” economy, not surprising.

The electricity ends about an 1/8 of a mile outside the town heading west. Here is a map of the area:

Toledo District Road Map

Pretty well off of anything – does not seem to be much for the town people to do – no bars, no restaurants, just go to bed at night, get up and work and eat, talk to your neighbors about the local gossip and do it all over again. Kind of like the old days in the prairies and western towns in the 1800’s. Here are a picture of a house that is, as I would say, roughing it!

Truely "roughing" it

Corn grown in area in jungle cleared by local people

They may not have all the creäture comforts of the USA, but at least they’ve got this straight!

Have to keep etiquette even in the most remote places!

Further down the road, past the town and leaving the electricity behind, I kept thinking that I should turn back. One really is in the middle of no where out here, and anything can happen. I do not take my safety lightly, and robbers, a breakdown, or a fast entrance of rain can cause all sorts of problems. But then I ran across this little oasis – there is activity and civilization out here!

Falls outside San Antonio Belize

The falls past San Antonio

A picnic area, and even covered at that!

Picnic area by falls

Do you understand - not an outhouse!

Lets make sure we understand what this building is for, and looks like a wonderful place to change into a bathing suit. Really, out here, who is going to see? No one I’ve seen for hours!

Rains a’ comin’, time to head on back to the house. You do not want to get caught out here in a deluge, it will wreck your day, and possibly your car!

The rains are reaching all of the eastern portion of the country

Earlier, I had stopped in for a look see around Dangriga, Belize. A Saturday morning, and this is what the main drag through town looked like.

Another view, the opposite direction of the traffic on a Saturday morning

Main street in Dangriga, Belize on Saturday morning

You are right, not even a light – blinking or otherwise. Small town of maybe 10,000 people. Main area of the Garífuna people, the ones who originally revolted when they were slaves, and fought the slave traders and won. From there, it looks like nothing changed much. No industry, not much in the way of local goods being produced, just a “lets hang out” type of life here.

This is the “busy water way ” through Dangriga, Belize. Did not try to avoid taking pictures of boats moving, there were just none to see.

Waterway out Dangriga, Belize

Water way in Dangriga, Belize

Belize’s version of Red Lobster – maybe a franchisee operation?

Red Lobster in Belize - a franchise you think?

Inside the city, a guy hard at work making the cinder blocks for building houses and stores. This looks like one heck of a lot of work!

Handmade blocks Dangriga, Belize

Handmade bocks, Dangriga, Belize

A local playground, really the only one, in Dangriga, Belize. About 10 AM, and not a child in sight. Must be playing video games or messaging on their phones. What do you think?

More of the playground, nary a child in sight on Saturday morning

Playground deserted on Saturday morning

A school built by Methodists awhile back. You see that a lot around the country, certain religious groups building schools. Baptist, Methodist, Jehovah Witness, Catholics – all have schools here. I think what would be nicer, is to give these people a way to make a living other than working the fields for the agriculture conglomerates. Just my opinion mind you. I would rather have a good way to make a living in my country, then being able to read about how well others are doing!

Methodist School downtown Dangriga

Methodist school Dangriga

Methodist School true blue

Another shot of the firehouse in Dangriga, Belize

Last, but of course not the least, is the fire house. A large contingent of trucks and safety vehicles to protect Dangriga if it were ever to try to go up in smoke! I feel so much safer going through town after seeing this large group of fire and ambulance contingent!

Do not get me wrong here. Not trying to change these people’s way of life. I am somewhat sarcastic in nature, and it is just my view-point of what I am seeing. Very friendly people, the ones I have met. Rough life for those who were born here, and are trying to make a living.Like everything in the world, it is all dependent on how you view things.

Would I call it a tropical paradise – NO.

Would I be able to survive here if I decide to stay – yes, there are ways to make a living here. Not a great living, but a rough living if one chose to do that. Over all , a good place to visit. Still rough around the edges, wanting for the basic needs to be comfortable – not much air conditioning, electric is very expensive, water is questionable, and transportation is a “take your risks” type of deal.

Roads are rough, much of the country is not developed. Mennonites seem to have found their place here. Many expats I have met, love it here. So, it all really is about expectations and tastes for the life you want to lead.
Happy I am here, and hope to enjoy more of the country.

Cheers for now

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About John Wilson

Traveler, writer and photographer. No home now, just traveling the world in search of the lost chord.
This entry was posted in Belize - the country, people, and pictures, San Antonio and Dangriga,Belize and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to San Antonio and Dangriga, Belize

  1. reania good says:

    i think dat u should +pictures with each school u show

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