Written by Kaylyn Bodden

Belize Independence Day

"Belize Flag"

Belize’s Independence Day takes place annually on 21st September. Previously a British colony in 1862, the Spanish attempted to dislodge the British seven times before finally giving up after meeting defeat in the Battle of Saint George’s Caye. The battle occurred on 10th September, and the period between Saint George’s Caye Day and Independence Day calls for a time of great celebration.

Originally, Belize was named “British Honduras” but it was renamed “Belize” in 1973. It is the only Central American nation with English as an official language, though Spanish and Belizean Creole are also spoken.

Independence Day in Belize is a time of profuse flag waving, colourful patriotic decorations, numerous parades, singing and dancing, carnivals, and indulgences in tasty Belizean cuisine.

Here are some of the local activities you may wish to take part in on 21st September and throughout this month of celebration:

  • Independence Day parades – these parades take place in towns both small and large throughout Belize. Expect floats, marching bands, cultural dress, and fireworks.
  • Belizean music concerts – ranging from small village events to the gathering of thousands in major cities.
  • Children’s programmes – activities take place for all ages throughout the country, such as talent shows, concerts, and dancing.
  • The Expo – the biggest Independence Day event, drawing crowds of over 15,000, there will be a variety of activities, stalls, souvenirs, dancing, local food and shopping opportunities.
  • Other famous attractions– while you’re here, don’t neglect some of Belize’s most amazing natural and man-made attractions such as the Belize Barrier reef, where new species still being discovered, the Mayan ruins such as Caana in Caracol, and El Castillo in Xunanatunich, and the beautiful mountains and rain forests.

For more information on what to do in Belize especially during Independence Day, please go to http://www.belizetourismboard.org/

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