Belize Reef & Rainforest Birding Tour

Belize Reef & Rainforest Birding Tour is a fully customizable ten-day birding tour focused on inland destinations and the beautiful island of Caye Caulker in front of the second-largest reef on the planet. These destinations are home to a significant number of bird species and wildlife.


10Days, 9 Nights

Group Size

Minimum 2 people



Comfort Level

Standard to Luxury

You will visit:

During the Belize Reef & Rainforest Birding Tour you will visit La Milpa Forest Station, Lamanai Archaeological Site, Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary, Caye Caulker, Green Hills Butterfly Ranch and Botanical Collection, and Hidden Valley Inn & Reserve. Fantastic destinations inside areas that protect natural and cultural treasures, you will have a great photography opportunity in this birding adventure in Belize.

La Milpa Forest Station

La Milpa Forest Station is a rustic lodge within a 260,000-acre research area called the Rio Bravo Conservation Area. It is home to approximately 390 Species of birds, 75 percent of which are endemic to Belize and the Yucatan Peninsula.

This dense broadleaf forest located in North Western Belize is one of the prime birding hotspots in Belize for species such as the Grey-throated Chat and Rose-throated Tanager. Exploring the many trails at La Milpa can reward you with birds such as Ocellated Turkey, Yucatan Poorwill, Lovely Cotinga, Crested Guan, Great Curassow, and Barred Forest falcon, to name a few.

Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary

This area is of international importance for migratory birds as they flock to the lagoons during the wet season, and food is difficult to find in other areas. Non-migratory birds also find this area essential; various species are here. In 1998, authorities designated this area as Belize’s first Ramsar site.

This location offers excellent birdwatching opportunities on land and the water in its tributaries. Seek out the Bare-throated Tiger, Sungrebe, Jabiru, Wood-storks, Black-collared Hawk, and the American Pygmy Kingfisher. In the pine and hardwood forest habitats, seek out the endangered Yellow-headed Parrot among other migratory and resident breeds.

Caye Caulker

Coastal development threatens the littoral forest of this habitat, which houses the Near-threatened species of the White-crowned Pigeon and the Black Catbird. This area boasts significant mangrove habitats that are home to the Rufous-necked Wood-rail and host to migrant birds such as thrushes, orioles, tanagers, and warblers. 

Lamanai Archaeological Reserve

This remote location on the New River lagoon boasts almost 400 species of birds documented within a 3-mile radius. The area is Belize’s premier birding location. Habitats range from vast wetlands and broadleaf forests to pine savannah, and all are easily accessible.

A Spotlight Safari provides a fantastic opportunity to see roosting waders, nocturnal, and some of the more elusive diurnal species up close and personal. Regular sightings include the Northern Potoo, Yucatan Nightjar, Common Pauraque and Nighthawk, Grey-necked Wood-Rail, Sungrebe, and Agami Heron. 

Other species of birds we may encounter in this privileged location include the Black-collared Hawk, Northern Jacana, Mangrove Swallow, Olive-Throated Parakeet, American Pygmy Kingfisher, and occasionally a Purple Gallinule. Types of wildlife, such as the endangered Morelete’s Crocodile and Green Iguana, are also common sightings in Lamanai.

We will also have the chance to explore the ruins and have the opportunity to view birds such as Red Lored Parrot, Blue-crowned Mot-mot, Collared Aracari Toucan, Lineated and Pale-Billed Woodpeckers, and Black-Headed and Violaceous Trogons. Also, Yucatan Black Howler Monkeys can usually be heard here.

Hidden Valley Inn & Reserve

is a small, intimate lodge hidden within the Mountain Pine Ridge Reserve on a 7,200-acre private protected area.

This unique ecosystem of upland pine ridge savannah, deep ravines, and the tropical broadleaf forest is home to rare raptors such as the Orange Breasted Falcon, Stygian Owl, Black & White Hawk-Eagle, and King Vultures. Other species commonly seen are Azure Crowned Hummingbird, Orange Billed Sparrow, Rufus Capped Warbler, Hepatic Tanager, Green Jay, and Acorn Woodpeckers, to name a few.

Green Hills Butterfly Ranch & Botanical Collection

At Green Hills Butterfly Ranch and Botanical Collection, we focus on butterflies and their food plants, recognizing bio-diversity as an essential component of our performance. The Green Hills’ biological diversity incorporates plant life that attracts butterflies and birdlife. The Reserve has documented at least 316 bird species around the 100 acres. 

Hummingbirds take a central role due to the ease of observing them. Bird feeders situated close to the caterpillar building bring in lots of hummingbirds and often really distract from the butterflies. Until today, the Reserve has documented at least 15 hummingbird species, with 11 frequently visiting the feeders. Visitors often spot up to six species in a single visit at Green Hills Ranch.

Itinerary of Belize Reef & Rainforest Birding Tour

Dia 1: Arrival – Transfer to La Milpa Forest Station

Our friendly representative at Philip S. W. Goldson International Airport will greet and transfer you by ground to La Milpa Forest Station. Upon arrival at La Milpa, check-in, and you will have time to observe birds around the lodge after dinner.
Dinner and lodging at La Milpa Forest Station

Dia 2 - La Milpa Birding & Wildlife Adventure

Today, you will start with an early morning birdwatching hike through La Milpa trails, searching for local specialties such as Gray-throated Chat, Tody Motmot, Ornate hawk-eagle, King Vulture, and Crested Eagle.

The feeders of the lodge are a unique attraction where dozens of birds can be observed, among them Red-legged Honeycreepers, Green Honeycreepers, Olive-backed Euphonias, and Tanagers; it is also effortless to find Ocellated Turkey and Great Curassow.

Time for lunch, a short rest, and the walk continue to observe birds and other species that inhabit the Reserve.
At night, there will be a walk in search of owls and other nocturnal creatures around the lodge; on this walk, there is the possibility, and with great luck, to observe a jaguar and other cats; there are several reports of travelers who have had an encounter with this fantastic mammal.
Dinner and Lodging at La Milpa Ecolodge

Dia 3 - La Milpa Birdwathing & Photography

We will continue birding around the lodge and different trails to find more species that inhabit this tropical paradise.
Also, you will have excellent photography opportunities at the feeders with dozen of colorful birds, including hummingbirds such as White-necked Jacobin, rufous tailed hummingbird, Violet Sabrewing, Wedge-tailed Sabrewing, and White-bellied Emeralds, among others.
Lodging at La Milpa

Dia 4: Transfer to Crooked Tree - Lamanai Archaeological Site

After breakfast, transfer to Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary with a birding stop at the Lamanai Archaeological site on the route.

Lamanai is among Belize’s major Mayan ceremonial centers situated on the banks of the New River Lagoon. A tropical forest, home to an essential selection of bird species, surrounds this archaeological site: Spider Monkeys, Yucatan Black Howler Monkeys, and more.

Besides, the cultural treasure Lamanai is a well-known bird watching paradise with plenty of bird species, such as Black-faced Ant-thrush, Gray-collared becards, Royal and Sepia-caped Flycatchers, Black-throated Shrikes, Northern Bentbills, White-breasted, and Spot-breasted Wood Wrens, Plain Xenops, Stub-tailed Spadebills, White-crowned Parrots, Keel-billed Toucan, and Collared Aracaris among others.

After a birding adventure at the Lamanai Archaeological site, it continues towards Crooked Tree Sanctuary. Arrival and check-in at Bird’s Eye View Lodge, birdwatching afternoon near the lodge

Dinner and lodging are at Bird’s Eye View Lodge.

Day 5: Birding at Crooked Tree Sanctuary

The Crooked Tree Sanctuary provides inland waterways, swamps, and lagoons; the Reserve also has a series of trails allowing foot exploration. Today, you are going to explore the trails on foot and by car in the quest for birdlife, including some specialties from the Yucatan peninsula, such as Yucatan Jay, Yucatan Woodpeckers, Rufous-browed Peppershrike, Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture, Vermillion Flycatchers, Fork-tailed Flycatchers, Parrots, and Raptors.

Lunch and time for a short rest, then you will continue birding inside the Reserve. Night walk for owling with good opportunities to spot Northern Pottoos and Yucatan poorwill

Dinner and lodging at Bird’s Eye View Lodge

Day 6 – Crooked Tree Birding & Transfer to Caye Caulker

The Birding Boat Tour is one of the most exciting activities in the sanctuary. A fascinating journey through the different waterways of the Reserve that provides the opportunity to observe birds such as the beautiful Agami Heron, Boat-billed Heron, Black-collared Hawk, Roseate Spoonbill, Yucatan Jays, Snail Kites, and the Jabiru Stork, among others

After lunch, we depart to Caye Caulker.  Lodging at Caye Caulker

Day 7: Caye Caulker Birding Tour

We will start our birding tour around Caye Caulker Forest Reserve for species uch as Clapper Rail, Rufous-necked Wood-Rail, and Common Black Hawk. Along the beachfront, we might find Godwits and Brown Boobies and waders skimming through for small crustaceans.

Day 8: Transfer to HIdden Valley & Green Hills Butterfly Ranch

Breakfast and transfer to Hidden Valley; we will visit Green Hills Butterfly Ranch & Botanical Collection.
The hummingbirds will take center stage during our stop at Green Hills Butterfly Ranch. The bird feeders near the caterpillar building attract many hummingbirds. Researchers have documented a minimum of 15 species of hummingbirds, and visitors can observe 11 of these at the feeders. At Green Hills Ranch, you can typically spot six species in just one stop.

Some of the hummingbirds that we can spot at the Reserve are the White-necked Jacobin, Rufous-tailed Hummingbird, Long-billed Hermit, Scaly-breasted Hummingbird, Wedge-tailed Sabrewing, Violet Sabrewing, and White-bellied Emerald.

This fantastic destination also offers a magnificent photo opportunity. Check in at Hidden Valley Inn, then take a birding walk around the lodge.
Dinner and lodging at Hidden Valley Inn

Day 9: Hidden Valley Birding Adventure

Early coffee while enjoying the birds at the bird feeder: Jay, Brown Jay, Yellow-tailed Oriole, Plain Chachalaca, Gray-headed Pigeon, and Clay-colored Thrush, among others.
After breakfast, you will head toward the Mountains of Western Belize, searching for Raptors like the Orange Breasted Falcon, Stygian Owl, Solitary Eagle, and King Vultures.

After lunch, we will dedicate the afternoon to a birding tour through the different trails that the lodge offers, birding at the pine forest and scrub areas that inhabit species such as Black-headed Saltator, Yellow-bellied Elaenia, Yellow-faced Grassquit, Dusky-capped Flycatcher, Gray-crowned Yellowthroat, and Rufous-capped Warbler.

Exploring the woodland, we can spot neotropical species, such as Slaty-tailed Trogon, Collared Trogon, Black-headed Trogon, Ivory-billed Woodcreeper, Tawny-winged Woodcreeper, Pale-vented Pigeon, Scaled Pigeon, to mention some. Dinner at Hidden Valley Inn. Then, we will have time for a night’s adventure in the quest of Stygian Owls and other nocturnal creatures.
Lodging at Hidden Valley Inn.

Day 10: Transfer Out

Transfer to the Philip S. W. Goldson International Airport for your flight home.

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