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Carnival Vista: What’s for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner?
August 28, 2021

Port Excursion: Spectacular Snorkel at Rendezvous Caye (Belize)


QUESTION: What do you recommend on a port excursion while in Belize City?

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Cruise Ship

Carnival Vista

Port Excursion

Spectacular Snorkel at Rendezvous Caye via Carnival Shore Excursions.

More Info:

Arrives at Port: 7:15am
Departs: 8:15am
Pick Up at Ship
No Tender Needed


$79.99 / adult (4-5hrs)
* Bring cash! There are no ATMS or credit card machines on the island.

It's August 25 and 86°F and we're aboard the Carnival Vista cruise line and we're looking forward to some time in the water to explore the wonders of the barrier reef at a tropical island conveniently offered directly from the ship.

We visited a private island with snorkeling opportunities in the second largest barrier reef in the world… yes, please! We visit Rendezvous Caye which sits along the coast of Belize's Barrier Reef. Actually, the largest reef in the Western Hemisphere, the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef (585 miles in length)… is also called the Great Mayan Reef... is part of a UNESCO site also containing the Belize Barrier Reef. "This reef features 106 coral species (both hard and soft) and houses 500 fish species." –LeisurePro

On a Caribbean Cruise, we go to Rendezvous

Conveniently, our snorkel excursion picks up right at the cruise ship. Typically, there’d be a tender on other port excursions at Belize City. Let the snorkel tour adventure begin! First thing, we boarded our 2-story water shuttle.

Travel time was about a 40 minutes each way to ride to Rendezvous Caye... to some, which may seem like a long time. Must've been the best time to visit. We were in luck that other cruise ships must've not visited the same port. Other than our boat ride, we didn't notice any others participating in this excursion amongst the other day trips one can participate in while cruising. No smaller groups in small boats visit the tiny island. Felt like exclusive access to this section of the coral reef.

At first glimpse, this place is gorgeous! What a beautiful beach! Space to spread out and sit under shade or on a hammock.

An August Day in Belize on a Small Island

Here are a few captures of the small island's scenery:

What’s Included:
  -  Quick lunch of Burgers and rum punch.
  -  Snorkeling gear.
  -  Beach chair and umbrella.
  -  with Extras ($) on the menu.

Their simple beach bar included:

  -  local beer $4
  -  rum punch $7
  -  rum & coke $7

The shore excursion to Rendezvous Caye is great for beginners because you’re snorkeling at a shallow reef where it’ll be easier to spot underwater sea life. I also liked the choice of lifejackets they provided. It allowed those who were more advanced to dive down while the beginners could inflate their vests.

Off to explore with the more intermediate group of tourists. One day my goal is to consider myself as an advanced snorkeler - swimming long distances, holding my breath longer, and diving down deeper to explore.

Cappy, our snorkeling guide, was so knowledgeable of all things under the sea… constantly pointing out things we’d float past.

Excellent Carnival Cruise Guided Snorkel at Rendezvous Caye, Belize 

Spotted Drum

Spiny Sea Urchin

Threespot Damselfish

Signs of Spiny Lobsters

As others exited to get their lunch, we continued to snorkel a little longer.

Here are this day’s Reef’s Wonderers:
1. Bluehead Wrasse
2. Squirrelfish
3. Sergeant Majors (not to be confused with convict tang which has a black stripe go down it’s face & eye)
4. Gray Angelfish
5. Jawfish

6. Fish feeding on a tiny crab
7. Green Algae Sea Pearls
8. Smooth Trunkfish trying to hide through the baitfish
9. Tiny fish sticking its head out of the conch

Bluehead Wrasse

Gray Angelfish

Smooth Trunkfish


World of Corals and Reefs

Purple sea fans

Branch corals

Such variety...

Tube sponges

Brain coral


4 hours later, we head back to the ship and say bye to this pristine, tiny island. We would happily revisit this caye in Belize and participate in this excursion again. It was a wonderful experience that gave us ample time snorkeling, see the reef, and enjoy a beach day.

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