The Orange Walk and Corozal Districts are overlooked by most tourists, even though the area’s protected areas are home to as much wildlife as anywhere else in Central America, including populations of jaguars and regionally endemic birds (Yucatán jays and occelated turkey). In addition, the extensive coastal lagoons of Shipstern and Sarteneja are largely undeveloped, and home to manatees, dolphins, and flocks of native and migratory birds.
The second-largest district of Belize, Orange Walk encompasses vast tracts of wilderness, peaceful waterways, and Maya ruins; Orange Walk Town is the area’s hub, a small commercial and farming center on the Northern Highway.
New River Lagoon, which you must navigate to reach the Lamanai ruins, is Belize’s largest body of fresh water—28 miles long, Its dark waters are smooth, changing with every cloud that passes. Morelet’s crocodiles and Mesoamerican river turtles, locally known as “hickatee” turtles, inhabit these waters, along with abundant fish, wading birds, and waterfowl.
The north’s largest town in the bayside town of Corozal, 96 miles from [nodeL35521 link Belize City] and just nine miles from the Río Hondo and the Mexican border. In Corozal, you’ll enjoy a peaceful stroll along the seawall as you plot where to go next: North to Mexico? East by boat to Sarteneja and San Pedro? Or south to Lamanai?
© Joshua Berman and Avalon Travel from Moon Belize, 9th Edition