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11 Eco Lodges In Belize That Are Actually Sustainable

cabin with thatch roof in middle of jungle

Staying at eco lodges simultaneously allows one to experience culture while also contributing to the local people and their surrounding environment. A win-win situation.

There are roughly 22 eco lodges scattered throughout Belize with many in rural areas. I have extensively read the reviews for each accommodation to come up with the top 11 eco lodges that are truly sustainable and are actually worth visiting.

If you're in a rush, you can jump into the list of Eco Lodges in Belize which includes something for travelers on all budgets.

Let's get started.

What Is An Eco Lodge?

Proper eco lodges are normally named because of their location — usually in the jungle or somewhere nature-focused. So, that would mean that hotel based in center of town that has energy-saving bulbs, low-flow toilets and less frequent towel washing can't qualify as an eco-lodge but are more of a green hotel.

Things to consider while staying at an eco lodge

Pros

  • Full jungle immersion with sounds
  • Easy access to unique attractions
  • Potential access to river
  • Increased chances of wildlife spotting
  • Potential access to fresh farm food
  • Local cultural experience

Cons

  • Ceiling fans instead of AC units
  • Spotty wifi/cell phone service
  • Limited access water/electricity
  • Potential bad roads due to location
  • Limited nearby restaurants
  • Increase in bugs and mosquitos

What Makes A Good Eco Lodge?

According to the International Tourism Society, these are the internationally-recognized eco lodge guidelines.

Eco lodges must embrace these three basic principles of ecotourism:

Be in a nature-based location

Benefit the local people

Offer interpretative programs

They also need to practice at least two of the eight items below:

  1. Contribute to conservation of local natural resources
  2. Acquire water through sustainable means and reduce consumption
  3. Provide for careful handling and disposal of solid waste
  4. Utilize renewal energy sources
  5. Impact natural surroundings minimally during construction
  6. Fit seamlessly into the local physical, cultural, architectural, and landscaping contexts
  7. Use traditional building technology and materials when possible
  8. Involve the local community in the planning stages

Since there are only a few accommodations that actually check all guidelines, I still listed those that follow at least five requirements including two of the basic principles. Eco lodges come in all flavors and sizes after all and the sustainable space is still new to Belize.

Eco Tourism In Belize

According to the definition from the TIES quoted below, eco tourism is about uniting conservation, communities and sustainable travel.

Responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment, sustains the well-being of the local people, and involves interpretation and education.

The International Ecotourism Society

Does Belize participate and market eco tourism? Yes and no. On one hand, it does have over 60% of land forested, a plastic ban as since 2019, banned offshore drilling and over 100 protected areas. On the other hand then it has a growing cruise ship industry that negatively affects marine life, doesn't reinforce plastic ban and does little to benefit the local economy.

With that said, let's take a look at how we can actively make a difference by staying at these eco lodges.

Jungle Eco Lodges In Belize

Budget Stays

Budget Stay

1. Parrot Nest Lodge

Bullet Tree Falls, Cayo

Starts at $55.00 USD

Sleeps 2

4/5 Sustainability Rating

wooden cabin surrounded by treestree house with stairs and tree behind it

Ranked as the #1 jungle lodge in Belize by the Travel Channel, Parrot Nest Lodge is a family owned and operated business. They claim to be everything but luxurious but you can expect a unique tropical experience with access to clear waters and plenty of flora & fauna.

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Budget Stay

2. Sun Creek Lodge

San Marcos, Toledo

Starts at $50.00 USD

Sleeps 2

4/5 Sustainability Rating

thatched roof cabin with hammock in verandahoutdoor shower with stone wall

Sun Creek Lodge is off the beaten path, rustic and authentic in every sense. The cabins are thatched houses built the traditional Mayan way with an outdoor hot/cold showers. The hosts are originally from Germany but made their new home in the jungles of Belize.

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Budget Stay

3. Pineapple Hill

Dangriga, Stann Creek

Starts at $75.00 USD

Sleeps 2

4/5 Sustainability Rating

natural pool in background from verandah with hammockswooden cabin surrounded by plants

This magical Airbnb hosts screened treetop cabins over a natural jungle pool. It has a unique vibe striking a perfect balance of nature and luxury. With the ideal hosts being couples, it has a full kitchen, outdoor shower and hot water. Hiking trails are also available.

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Mid-range Stays

Mid-range Stay

4. Alma Del Rio

Near Cristo Rey, Cayo

Starts at $100.00 USD

Sleeps 2

3/5 Sustainability Rating

woman looking outside to natural view from screened verandahoutdoor shower with natural wooden walls and rocks on the ground

Located only 10 minutes away from San Ignacio, Alma Del Rio is a perfect jungle homestay experience for couples. Not only does it strike a perfect balance between rustic & luxury but it has a kitchen, solar heated water and leans towards biodegradable products.

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Mid-range Stay

5. Black Rock Lodge

Cayo District

Starts at $100.00 USD

Sleeps 2

5/5 Sustainability Rating

small stone house with black and white texture surrounded by flowerstriangular thatched roof overlooking dense rainforest

Off the beaten and off the grid best describes Black Rock Lodge. While not the easiest to get to, it makes up for it by having easy access to the famous adveture-packed area of Pine Ridge. They also make a gigantic effort to be carbon neutral by having almost 100% renewable energy.

Read more about their sustainability practices.

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Mid-range Stay

6. Martz Farm

Cayo District

Starts at $90.00 USD

Sleeps 4

3/5 Sustainability Rating

house built around tree with two hammocks hung in betweensecond floor open bedroom with two beds and thatched roof

If you've dreamed of staying at a homestay in a rustic tree house or a snug cabin deep in the jungle, Martz Farm might be your place. The road to get there is an adventure but you are rewarded by pristine swimming creeks, incredible birding and access to a unique pontoon boat adventure.

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Mid-range Stay

7. Macaw Bank Jungle Lodge

Cayo District

Starts at $120.00 USD

Sleeps 2

5/5 Sustainability Rating

tiny cabin with red rood and thatched roof beside stoned room with thatched roofthatched roof open restaurant with tables and colorful chairs under it

While not as popular as neighboring resorts and lodges, Macaw Bank Jungle Lodge takes sustainable tourism seriously. The lodge produces 85% of its electricity, hires Belizean staff, grows their own fruits, utilizes cloth napkins and has their own gravity fed showers.

Read more about their sustainability practices.

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Mid-range Stay

8. Table Rock Lodge

Near Cristo Rey, Cayo

Starts at $175.00 USD

Sleeps 3

5/5 Sustainability Rating

cabin with thatch roof in middle of jungleoutdoor dinner table with lush rainforest backdrop

The owners Alan and Colleen started this lodge from scratch after purchasing an abandoned farm in Belize. The lodge now generates 100% of its own electricity, supplies majority of running water with rain water and supplies much of the food from he farm.

Read more about their sustainability practices.

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Luxury Stays

Luxury Stay

9. Hamanasi

Hopkins, Stann Creek

Starts at $307.00 USD

Sleeps 4

5/5 Sustainability Rating

wooden lounge chairs in verandah in front of beachqueen bed in high ceiling room with wooden ceiling fan and jungle view

Hamanasi prides themselves on their regenerative initiatives with proactive practices like leading a volunteer green team, sourcing local products, using biodegradable bags and employing 97% of locals as staff. They also hold a Green Globe Certification.

Read more about their sustainability practices.

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Luxury Stay

10. Chaa Creek

Near San Ignacio, Cayo

Starts at $389.00 USD

Sleeps 2

5/5 Sustainability Rating

modern villas with large open windows and jungle backgroundinfinity pool with jungle backdrop and thatched houses in background

Award-winning Luxury Lodge at Chaa Creek began in 1977 when owners Mick and Lucy moved to a jungle property close to the Macal River eventually becoming pioneers in the eco tourism. Having been here for a week, I can attest to the conservation, community and sustainable practices.

Read more about their sustainability practices.

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Luxury Stay

11. Chan Chich

Gallon Jug, Orange Walk

Starts at $350.00 USD

Sleeps 2

5/5 Sustainability Rating

two beds with mosquito screens and thatched roofriver canoe with two people

Chan Chich Lodge is found deep in the rainforest bordering Guatemala which is probably the best chance at seeing the elusive jaguar. The lodge has practiced sustainability since the 1980s and grow 60% of their own food. Bowen & Bowen is the holding company for the lodge.

Read more about their sustainability practices.

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