Top Reasons to Enjoy September in Belize
Ok, so you already know that Belize is beautiful, unique and close by, but we bet you never thought of these fantastic reasons to visit Belize in September. Hold on to your chair as we share with you the Top Reasons why Belize is so special in September!
Belize gained independence from Great Britain in 1981 and its been only 35 years that the country has been on its own. Maturing with grace is what Belize is all about- finding new dimensions in travel and developing into a tourist destination are just some of the fabulous developments in the last 30+ years of sovereignty. Although Belize has been here all along as British Honduras before independence, the country was barely even heard of until the last decade and amazingly it remains a fact that even today in North America and Europe, only a real handful of people know anything about this tiny corner of the Caribbean/ Central American map.
This is the month when everyone shows patriotism in all its forms and colours. From earrings to t-shirts; from bicycle rim decorations to fancy car paint; to flags and banners outside businesses & homes- the colours of Belize are just everywhere! Red, White and Blue seem to dominate every picture, every window, every cart and every building. Lively tempo music of the season can be heard from all over and in most places you can hear cheerful whistling or humming or better yet, catch a glimpse of somebody dancing to the hottest September song. A calendar of events is issued in early August that includes cultural and talent events countrywide and features pageants, parades and song-writing competitions. Uniform parades by school children as well as the Police & Fire departments, Coast Guard and Belize Defence Force are held. Smaller communities carry on their own parades with various themes.
St George’s Caye Day
September 10th is celebrated in Belize as a national holiday. On this day in 1798, the infamous battle of St George’s Caye was fought and won by the brave little troop of ship wreaked English buccaneers (known as Baymen) who together with s small group of black slaves, defeated the Spaniards who threatened the tiny settlement of Belize. The island today features a popular resort but hidden in the bushes are relics of the battle and testaments of the fight and songs are played every year starting on August 15th to mark this time known in Belize as “September Celebrations”. This was the last attempt by the Spaniards to take control of Belize. The historical significance of battle is depicted on Belize’s five dollar bill which features a map of the island, along with images of important landmarks including a sarcophagus that is still believed to be buried behind the villa located on the property of St. George’s Resort. The National Anthem carries a tribute to the valiant fighters and details the beauty and sovereignty of our beautiful jewel.
Carnival- Belizean Style
The September Carnival in Belize is an event most people plan for months in advance. A creole themed event, this parade starts in the early afternoon on the Saturday before Independence Day. The colourful and elaborate costumes are truly jaw dropping! Carnival bands compete for best costumes, best theme, Carnival King & Queen and so on. The cultural soca & reggae music is loud and the parade goes on for hours… if you like Mardi Gras- this is the event for you!
Photo Courtesy of My Beautiful Belize
Several pageants take place in keeping with the September celebrations and add beauty & grace to the month of September. The Queen of the Bay pageant (St George’s Caye Day) takes place starting from the last week of August and by the 10th of September, the national queen is crowned. This pageant is different from all others in that it is not a beauty pageant- She is the emblem of freedom, and delicately envisions the sentiment that all Belizeans hold dear. Another pageant with even more prestige is the Miss Belize competition. Lovely young ladies vie for the title that will send them on a voyage to participate in the Miss Universe pageant- a dream for any young girl and one which all who represent Belize hold in high regard.
September 21st- Independence Day
The culmination of every September Celebration period is September 21st. The 20th is kept as the eve to independence and safely guarded by most households. By 6pm countrywide, businesses and shops close early to bring in the “21st” is it is lovingly referred to. In all towns and cities, a celebration kicks off the night with patriotic music, ballet & cultural dancing, poems and special performances by national artists. At the stroke of midnight, municipalities all over Belize conduct a respectful & proud flag raising ceremony – complete with government officials and attending members of the Belize Defence Force. The national anthem is sung with pride and immediately following this ceremony, fireworks light up the night skies over the homeland.
The following day is a Public & Bank holiday and parades fill the streets- bringing out citizens from all walks of life.
Yes, September is special and you will find the next few days filled with colourful patriotic tokens to help commemorate a month filled with laughter and good will as well as the tastes and sounds of Beautiful Belize- our home by the sea!
The management & staff of the Ian Anderson Adventures in Belize wishes all Belizeans- both those at home and abroad as well as our countless & most welcomed visitors a Happy St George’s Caye Day and a Happy 35th Independence Day!
In tribute to our 35th year of Independence- we celebrate with a verse from the Belize National Anthem:
“Nature has blessed thee with wealth untold,
O'er mountains and valleys where prairies roll;
Our fathers, the Baymen, valiant and bold
Drove back the invader, this heritage bold.
From proud Rio Hondo to old Sarstoon,
Through coral isle, over blue lagoon;
Keep watch with the angels, the stars and moon;
For freedom comes tomorrow's noon”