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The sun has been up for about an hour or so. My body still aches from relentless days of travel and to be honest, I’m feeling like a group Hell’s Angels have beaten me up. I’m in search of a morning meal as I stumble out of my room and into a dining room where I find eggs cooked ranchero style and placed in abundant supply in a bowl that comes complete with a long metal spoon. It protrudes from the heart of the pieces of green pepper and tomatoes mixed proportionately throughout the scrambled eggs that insures the required Mexican flare. It’s no doubt a hearty start to a day that prepares you for what lies ahead.

Located in the village of Ladyville in the Belize District of the Central American country, The Belize River Lodge is a tried and proven world class fishing lodge that has been in continuous operation since 1960. Previously known as Barothy's Lodge Ltd., the Belize River Lodge was the first of three fishing lodges built in Belize. In the early 1960's, Vic Barothy came to Belize from Cuba, fleeing the late 1950's revolutionary situation, once to Belize he located the ideal settings for three different fishing lodges; one on the southern end of Turneffe Atoll, one on Spanish Creek, about thirty miles inland, and one about four miles up the Belize Olde River, which is the present day Belize River Lodge. After operating these three Lodges for a few years, Mr. Barothy decided logistically that the four-mile river where Belize River Lodge sits today was the one site best suited for a wide variety of fishing opportunities.

Known as Barothy's Caribbean Lodge Ltd., then Keller Caribbean Sports Ltd (KCS),since January of 1987, Mr. Barothy's river lodge has been called The Belize River Lodge. The Lodge can accommodate up to sixteen people. The Guest House is a two story mahogany building. It contains four rooms, each with two single beds, private hot and cold showers, ceiling fans, and air conditioning. The main lodge and the guesthouse are separated by a connecting door and share an open veranda. The Cottage is set up for two groups of two or for a family. One of the cottage rooms has a cozy sitting area. The Bungalow has two rooms, each with a double bed. Today the Belize River Lodge still rests quietly on the banks of the Belize Olde River, amidst the lush green tropical setting. Balmy breezes, rich with bird song, drift among the private mahogany cottages.

Not only do they specialize in some of the very best saltwater fishing in all of Belize, and they also offer customized eco-tours. But no doubt the main reason you go there is to fish. The Belize River Lodge allows for easy access to a few different rivers, several creeks, and the flats, the mangrove cayes, and the Barrier Reef, the second largest on the planet.

Regardless of the occasional American and Taca flights that interrupt the simplest of conversations within the confines of the screened room porch in the main lodge, the setting is tranquil and in time you realize the Howler Monkeys can drown out the sound of the jets. The fishing opportunities begin aptly on the banks of the Belize River. From there they extend up the Sibun River,the Manatee River, Black Creek, and several other creeks and lagoons as well as to the waters off San George’s Caye and Long Caye.

The host and owners of the Belize River Lodge, Marguerite Miles and Mike Heusner guarantee that your every need is met. With a well-staffed team of quality professional guides, a fleet of boats, a complete fly tying workstation, and absolutely wonderful culinary chow, I have to say that The Belize River Lodge is one of the best if not the best that Belize has to offer.

Business is good at the lodge these days and the beds are full. That’s right, for somewhere between US$2000.00 plus transportation and cost of arriving with the required fishing gear from your town to Belize, the Belize River Lodge is among a handful of angling operations in the Caribbean that still cater to the angler to insure the best of adventures, as mentioned, one of the finest operators in all of Belize.

One of the guides of the Belize River Lodge showing off the catch of the day.
And now travellers from around the globe are looking at Belize for all the right reasons. Like the second largest barrier reef on the planet, more Garifuna and Krieol cultural sites than you’re likely to find anywhere else in all of Central America. Belize, an extraordinary tropical paradise, with abundant white sand beaches only a short drive from the mountains where archaeological of the ancient Belize Maya are tucked away under the jungle canopy. The countless rivers and fresh water lagoons makes Belize truly “mother natures best kept secret”.

As for the avid and complete angler, the freshwater as well as salt waters of this tropical wonderland of the western Caribbean offers some of the best fishing in the world. Renown for the Tarpon, Snook, Bonefish and Permit, a fisherman can stand firmly on the bow of a skiff casting into the shadows of barge wrecks or overhanging tropical vegetation. Later on you can find yourself tromping across the barren sand beds of the flats in search of that illusive Permit. Jack Cavelle’s and Tarpon half the size of a man. There are also an abundance of Snook, Snappers, Groupers, Cobia, and Barracudas.

From the lodge, Permit range from 5 to over 30 pounds. The best time to fish for Permit is October through July. This fish is the ultimate fisherman's trophy. Bonefish within this ecosystem vary from 2 to 8 pounds, with the majority being 4 to 6 pounds. Bone fishing is year round and are considered to be one of the most powerful fish, per pound for its size. Tarpon, the silver king, is one of the most acrobatic fish sought by anglers. These fish along the coast of Belize range from 5 to over 200 pounds. The bigger Tarpon are mainly found in the months of March through July and September through November. Smaller Tarpon (5 to 60 lbs) are found year round. The explosive Snook, saltwater's bass, can be found in sizes of 5 to 25 pounds. These fish are mainly caught February through November.

So if your next vacation dictates an angling experience, look no further than the Belize Olde River and world-class hospitality by Ms. Maguerite and Mister Mike, owners and operators of ‘the best of the best’. The Belize River Lodge, a place where fishing is so much more than a hook, line and a sinker.

All tackle, lines and hooks, are prepared to fit the need at the Belize River Lodge, Orange Walk district, Belize, Central America.

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