I finally got a chance to go this summer, and was surprised by how accessible this exotic country was. The official language is English (although Spanish is widely spoken). The currency exchange is two Belizean dollars to one U.S. dollar. Even arriving in Belize was easy -- I navigated customs and immigration in the tiny airport in just a few short minutes, and walked right outside to fresh air and a driver sent by the resort.
Although Belize is known for its Caribbean coastline and scuba diving (their coral reef is the second largest in the world, next to Australia's Great Barrier Reef), I ventured farther inland to the Cayo District. Just off the border with Guatemala, this area at the base of the Yucatan Peninsula is replete with Mayan ruins, ancient caves and natural beauty.
Ka'ana Boutique Resort, just outside of the friendly town of San Ignacio, brought luxury to this area when it opened earlier this year. It's small (only fifteen rooms and villas), but has an infinity-edge swimming pool, a spa, a gourmet restaurant and a wine cellar. My private villa, with its vaulted ceilings, shaded terrace and white feather bed, was the perfect home base from which to explore. That's as close to roughing it as I get.
Image if Ka'ana Boutique Resort © Charlyn Keating Chisholm