I always marvel at Belize’s natural riches: from the healthy coral reefs to the imposing mountains of lush tropical forest, there are so many beautiful places to see in this compact little country. I haven’t even scratched the surface yet! This weekend we finally made it to a spot out near the capital city of Belmopan that I’ve been longing to explore for ages. Ayala’s Natural Pool is a property in the village of Agua Viva, about a 2-hour drive from Placencia, that is one of the country’s lesser-known gems: a true treasure for those in the know!
Ayala’s has been on my ‘list’ for awhile (along with about a hundred other places!) but you know how it goes: life gets in the way. My friend, Lidia, clued me in on a Facebook promotion Ayala’s was running this month. Neither of us had ever visited but had seen pictures and really wanted to check it out for ourselves so we nailed down a date and gathered our families. The trip is SO worth it! As pretty in person as any picture you’ll see on Instagram, the natural pool is simply beautiful. Fed by a natural spring that bubbles up from the ground, the water is cool, clean, chemical free and invigorating.
The natural pool is spacious with comfortable stone ledges to perch upon. On one side of the pool are bathrooms and changing closets, the staging area for zip lining, and access to a volleyball court and soccer field. On the other side of the pool there is a wide green lawn with a dozen picnic tables and BBQ grills. Pack a picnic or cook from your cooler; supplement your lunch with fruit you pick right from the trees- look at the heaps of Malay Apples growing on the trees here! We happily helped ourselves to a bunch.
The zip line course was better than I expected! 9 lines in total, two of which are 1000 feet in length, this course is the real deal. Why don’t we hear more about it?! It was perfect for our group of mostly novices and our guides, Israel and Shanty, were so professional and thorough. They took the time to make sure our group was comfortable and enjoyed the full experience, they rode tandem with the little guys in our party whenever they needed help reaching the other side but let them soar on their own if they could. Everyone loved it!
I’m so glad we finally got to go here and now that I’ve been, I can’t wait to return! Next time we’ll come earlier and stay later; we’ll bring other families and plan to cook out and maybe stay overnight nearby. (Tree of Life guesthouse is just next door, I stayed once before and wrote about it here) There is a second fresh-water pool with waterslides. Ayala’s is great fun for everyone!