Half Moon Caye Natural Monument

Top choice Nature Reserve

in Half Moon Caye
Ethan Daniels / Shutterstock
Ethan Daniels / Shutterstock

Half Moon Caye Natural Monument is known first and foremost as providing nesting grounds for the rare red-footed booby bird, but the island's enchantments go far beyond that. There's also a lighthouse, excellent beaches and spectacular submerged walls that teem with marine flora and fauna. Underwater visibility can extend more than 200ft here.

A nature trail weaves through the southern part of the island to an observation platform that brings viewers eye level with nesting boobies and frigate birds. Along the path you'll see thousands of seashells, many inhabited by hermit crabs, and more than a few large iguanas.

The Belize Audubon Society has a visitors center where you must register and pay a BZ$20 park fee on arrival. If you're on a tour, your guide collects the park fee from each guest and pays for the group.