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ADVENTURES IN BELIZE out of Falconview Tourist BackPackers Adventure Hostel

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ENTRANCE TO FALCONVIEW ADVENTURE HOSTEL
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TEL: 663 5580

FALCONVIEW TOURIST BACKPACKERS ADVENTURE HOSTEL

Located in the foothills of the Belize Alps in Western Belize, Central America. We are on a hillside on the slope of Green Parrot Valley, in the suburb of Hillview, of Santa Elena town, just off the Western highway a half mile away.

We would like to make our hostel, your home away from home here in Belize and the source of many adventures in this Western mountainous district.

BUNK BEDS, CAMPING, FESTIVITIES, FREE KITCHEN, FREE T.V. ROOM

WE CATER TO GROUPS AS WELL!

WE CAN CATER TO ALL KINDS OF GROUPS! Are you a church group, a professor of archeology, anthropology, birds and wildlife in the jungles, etc., and want to run a 3 credit vacation semester?

CLICK HERE FOR PHOTOS OF THE HOSTEL INTERIOR!

There are lots of ADVENTURES to experience out of our HOSTEL in Western Belize. Here is a list to start with. Most guests on two week vacations spend a week here and we can keep you busy all week with day trip adventures. Recent Christmas guests, did TIKAL over in Guatemala, then Xununtanich and Cahel Pech the next day, after that they did ZIP LINING in the jungle tree tops followed by caves branch river tubing through the caves, the Actun Tunichil Muknal Mayan underground experience and this season one guide is offering a camping trip underground here taking two days. It's a big system. The water between lower cave system and upper cave system where the skeletons and pottery are is reported to be chest high this December. So bring your bathing suit.

ALL DAY TRIP TO THE CARACOL RUINS; This is far, far away in the interior of the Chiquibul Plateau over 3 low mountain ranges. Caracol was once the ruling city-state of the Fuedal Mayan Empire. Lord Waters the King of that time, was sort of a Ghengis Khan without horses. He conquered the whole Mayan Empire and we had peace for the next 400 years by the rule out of Belize from here in Caracol. This temple is the tallest building in Belize.

A DAY TRIP canoing a local river through a cave, at BARTON CREEK.

MACAL RIVER CANOING. The Macal River drains the Belize Alps and is very clean. Fishermen catch snook under the shade of the Hawksworth bridge where it crosses the river at the twin towns. Local canoe adventures usually enter the river 14 miles upstream as it exits the Macal River Gorge and travel down current to San Ignacio Town.

WE CAN OFFER THROUGH OUR OUTFITTERS an overnight canoeing trip.

LOWER BELIZE ALPS DAY TRIP This is called the Mountain Pine Ridge trip and usually includes a visit to the Rio Frio Cave at the Forestry village and the Rio On rapids for a dip in the pools created by the different FALLS. Hidden Valley Falls, a 1,600 ft drop of water into the Roaring Creek Gorge is included. You can only see the top 300 ft or so from the scenic lookout as the curvature of the steep gorge blocks view of the bottom. But the scenery around is fantastic.

ZIP LINING on cables between the high trees up in the jungle canopy followed by CAVE TUBING, the Caves Branch river through the caves.

ACTUN TUNICHIL MUKNAL better known as the true MAYAN XIBALBA, the underworld of the Mayan spiritual myths. This is a real place and there are many of them throughout the Feudal Kingdoms, as the feudal kingdoms are covered by cockscomb country with many hills, small hidden valleys and hidden caves. This day trip is a long one. You have to park about 45 minutes from the cave entrance and hike a jungle trail and wade a river three times. The lower cave system leads into an upper cave system in which there is a skeleton and pottery from 3000 years ago. The pond dividing them is reported above your belly button, so wade with your bathing suit carrying your clothes over your head. It is terrifying to think of ancient Mayans venturing so deep into these caves with only pine splint torches. We supply hard hats, lights, ropes and a lunch. It takes about 3 1/2 hours inside the cave system. The Maya believe still in a number planes of existance above and below our physical reality on this world.

BIRDING the Chiquibul: The Belizean interior trip.

BIRDING AT AQUACATE LAKE another exciting trip for bird counters.

TIKAL is over the border in Guatemala, but only a day trip from the hostel. Tikal was once the center of the Mayan Empire and got conquered by Lord Waters of Caracol in Belize. They have some very tall temples there.

BELIZE ALPS A camping trip due to distance! That includes tents and three days and two nights up on the mountain ranges of the highest ridges. The views are spectular. This is remote and a great place for honeymooners who want to be alone. Only pine trees up this high, the jungles lie down below. You get your first night and last night FREE at the HOSTEL for this trip and two nights in the remote mountains. This is rugged and we use logging roads to get up there about 70 miles away.

LOCAL PYRAMIDS We have a day trip, to Xunantunich a temple top pyramid, Clarissa Falls on the Mopan river for lunch and swim and Cahel Pech another temple top pyramid all for $22 usa out of the Hostel. This is a no frills budget trip, you pay your own park entrance fees and if you want a tour guide they are available at the sites. The price tends to fluctuate depending on the vehicle and tour guide availability. Runs anywhere from $22 to $38 or so USA.

COMBINATIONS We can book combinations of any of these, as most are all day trips, so you can stay busy for a week.

Our trips are done under license from different tour operators we have approved in 2007. Tour guides tend to change as do prices quoted. These tour guides don't charge enough and the roads are hard on vehicles. Consequently, they tend to go out of business quickly, especially with just seasonal work. We keep up with the latest most efficient reliable ones. FALCONVIEW TOURIST BACKPACKERS ADVENTURE HOSTEL is the place to camp out, we have beds and camp sites, and you can leave your valuables safe in our office, while you spend days going from one adventure to another out in Western Belize.

TINA'S BACKPACKERS HOSTEL ON CAYE CAULKER. We have a sister Hostel on the beach at Caye Caulker by the Barrier Reef. Lots of different sea adventures out there. From scuba, snorkeling, shark ray alley, offshore atolls and many sailing trips to islands along the Great Barrier Reef.

CLICK HERE FOR TINA'S BACKPACKERS HOSTEL on the beach at Caye Caulker by the Barrier Reef

BELIZE IS FULL OF PLACES TO SEE AND ADVENTURES TO EXPERIENCE!

There is a plethora of exciting ruins to explore, adventures to see, nature and creatures unique to Belize and the tropics, that tourists often get confused about what to do and see throughout the breadth and length of Belize.

What we do in Cayo West, at FALCONVIEW TOURIST BACKPACK ADVENTURE HOSTEL in the foothills of Western Belize, is try to offer ADVENTURES for eight days, without duplication. We are mindful that most people are on a two week vacation, of which only ten days is available to maximize their exposure and fun. Most tourists want to keep moving and not lose any days of their vacation time. Consequently, the guests we usually get, have either been to the Barrier Reef cayes for snorkeling, beach sunbathing, scuba and sailing and arrive here with us, to finish up their vacation time, or vice versa, they start with us and then travel to the offshore Barrier Reef cayes, usually Caye Caulker, or San Pedro. It is annoying and aggravating to a visiting guest, to have to lose vacation days waiting for a tour to accumulate enough subscribers to make a trip, or arrange something with a fly-by-night tour guide who makes excuses at the last minute why your planned adventure cannot take place. Lost days aggravate visitors on limited time vacation schedules, we find. We try to keep our guests moving from adventure to adventure each day they are with us. Tours usually cost more than your accommodations and are the biggest expense. We dont charge to book you on a trip, it is done as a service simply to see you have a good time and give us referrals to your acquaintances and friends as a place to stay.

Tour Guides are licensed people who can explain to you what ruins are about, or some other site. Tour Operators use tour guides, but are licensed companies that have vehicles and equipment, often supply a snack lunch as well. Every taxi driver, shoe shine boy and corner drunk is a licensed tour guide it seems like. You may prefer to go shopping around on your own seeking a bargain, but if your vacation time is tight and you want to use it to maximum benefit, we dont recommend you waste your time talking to people who cannot follow through. Even we who are experienced in this field never know until the minute we call around who may have enough customers from different lodges and hotels to make an expedition for the next day. There are very limited choices most of the time from reliable people and the prices are pretty much standardized. If you have days to waste then, by all means plan on shopping around. Sometimes you can beat the prices and save $10 if you locate some friendly poor taxi driver, or other person. In our experience, most of the time you will lose a vacation day.

ADVENTURES normally have to be booked and confirmed the day before, either by you or us. We dont care if you do your own booking. Most tour operators have size limits and will refuse one person, or even two persons for some trips, as the overhead cost of gasoline and other expenses cannot be met by them. We use pre-paid cell phones to call around and can spend $1 to $3 usa trying to get you space on tomorrow’s chosen adventure. Phone service is not cheap in Belize.

This area of Western Belize is normally off the beaten track for cruise ship people. Though the Zip Lining through the tree tops and tubing trip down by the capital is often overloaded with long waiting times should there be five cruise ships in the port, down on the coast. Cruise ship caterers and tour buses tend to stay within 50 miles of the coast and will overload Mayan ruins and trip sites inside that travel circle, with a 1000 people in one day, as they are in turn confined to traveling time limits of a few hours. Our adventures out here in the West of Belize avoid most cruise ship people and are more adventurous and unique. Most of our adventures take a whole day and take longer than a cruise tourist can budget the time for, as the ship will leave without them after a few hours.

Now if you have a couple of months to spare, then you stand a chance of experiencing all the unique sites and adventures that Belize has to offer. Even then, I doubt you would succeed.



There are now SEVEN hostels in Belize. One on San Pedro island, three on Caye Caulker island, one in Sarteneja, one in Corozal, two in the twin towns out Western Belize. For information CLICK HERE!

FAMILY VACATIONS: We now have a Spanish Mission style one bedroom furnished apartment in an annex building in the same lot available. For families, Mom and Dad can stay in the apartment and the kids can stay in the hostel dormitory. There are numerous local holiday places to visit and many waterfalls that local families go to on weekends.

Dec. 1st/07 -- 2008 EXPEDITION AND TOUR PRICES ARE SET.
Just came back from a meeting with tour operators. These are the 2008 season various prices. Some of these are limited to groups of three, or four. Usually we can phone around and try to organize a group if you are only one or two people. All trips are booked the evening before.
1) Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave expedition THE MOST SOUGHT AFTER Adventure in THREE MAYAN countries $80 US person
2) Crystal Cave with lunch is a NEW cave adventure. Haven't seen it myself yet, but only four cave guides are licensed for this new one and it is strictly restricted. Has skeleton and stuff inside. More rugged than the ATM cave trip they say. $75 usa per person
3) Lower Mountain Pine Ridge tour that includes Big Rock Falls, Rio On Rapids and Rio Frio Cave with a 45 minute medicinal trail hike. $40 usa per person. I haven't seen Big Rock Falls myself yet, but the photographs are beautiful. Will try to get there soon.
4) Barton Creek Cave Canoeing. A local weekend holiday place favored by Belizeans. $40 usa
5) A combination of Barton Creek Cave and the lower Mountain Pine Ridge tour $75 usa per person Nice for a family with kids. Lot of locals do this on weekends.
6) Caves Branch Tubing includes lunch $75 usa
7) TIKAL all day plus lunch $95 usa
8) CARACOL pyramids very far away in the interior $75 usa
9) Overnight canoe and camping trip. Lunch, dinner, campfire & breakfast include. From "More Tomorrow" to "Big Falls". ( Don't ask me, never been there? ) $150 usa
10) Canoe rentals $20 for the day.
11) Herbal Medicinal Trail and Butterfly Farm at the very upscale expensive resort of Chaa-Creek. $40 usa
12) Horseback riding ( 4 - 5 hours) to Xununtanich Maya ruin. Doesn't sound bad, most horse back tours are $15 per hour. This horseback trip is $40 usa.

2009 updates.

We are now entering our third year at Falconview Backpackers Adventure Hostel. The AUXILLOU TOURIST GROUP pioneered tourism in Belize out of the Barrier Reef island of Caye Caulker in 1964. The group consists of the patriarch Ray Auxillou, 71 years old, who has started Falconview Hostel in his retirement in the Western foothills of the Belize Alps. His four daughters have tourist operations on Caye Caulker, among other enterprises. Sharon the eldest, has Tradewind Suites on the beach, Wendy has her Auxillou Beach Suites. Each of these are basically three story buildings 50 feet from the Caribbean emerald green water and have four luxury condos for overnight and longer term rentals to tourists. The next one is Dianes Guest House, which Diane has leased out to some foreign person for a couple of years to operate, while she has borrowed money from the bank to build another BED and BREAKFAST on a real estate lot she has by the island airstrip. The youngest daugher hellion, Tina who has wandered the world, continues to run her TINA'S BACKPACKERS HOSTEL on the Caye Caulker Beach and is full to the gills with waiting lines for checkouts at least 7 or 8 months a year. This is a real party place with 32 beds about. FALCONVIEW HOSTEL here is still in the business of getting University age budget travelers who are exploring into the best trips and adventures in the interior CAYO DISTRICT. We have recently expanded and now offer the lower dormitory with eight beds, two one bedroom furnished apartments with valley scenic views from the verandah and by April 2009 ( I'm writing this in January, 2009,) we should have the second dormitory with six beds available. Currently we can handle 12 guests and by April we should be able to handle some of the CANCUN Mexican tour groups with 18 beds.

The ATM Xibalba cave trip has dropped in price for 2009 due to the price of gasoline going down worldwide, from $80 usa to $75 usa. We found us a really good tour guide operator to run the Belize Alps trips and you get a real full day with him for around $40. Currently working on tractor inner tubing the rapids around Benque Viejo on the Mopan River. We've had good luck also for some guests on a tighter budget who went Macal River kayaking in inflatable kayaks. You get trucked up river in the Macal River Gorge and on the way down there is a beautiful water fall, in which you can swim. Haven't got a photo yet though. Seen some from guests, but haven't checked it out myself. Looks fabulous.

The beds in the dormitories are $11 usa and .95 cents accomodations tax for the government. The two furnished apartments, have kitchens, bathrooms etc. and we charge $45 usa per night plus 9% government accomodations tax for short term overnight visitors. Occasionally we rent them longer term, but not often.

PHOTOS OF GUESTS AND STUFF! We have a BLOG, or newsletter with photos and articles on all the different things happening out here in the 500 square mile hilly area of the CAYO DISTRICT. Check it out to see what life is like out here for us.
http://westernbelizehappenings.blogspot.com

CLICK HERE FOR PHOTOS AND SHORT STORIES ON THINGS HAPPENING OUT HERE IN WESTERN BELIZE RECREATIONAL AREA

Para Espanol ! CLICK HERE!

Hostels in Belize
Belize hostels
Le meilleur, das beste, II migliore, El mejor
Chambre, Herberge, Ostello, Albergue,
Lits du dessus, Oberes Bett ( Etagenbett), Letto superiore a casetello, Cama inferior (litera)
Douche, Dusche, Doccia, Ducha,
Toilettes, Toilette, Bagno, Bano/aseo,
Lavabo, Waschbecken, Lavandino, Lavabo,

photo of kitchen at Falconview CLICK HERE!

Organic Hydroponic Vegetable Nursery Experimental Project for poverty alleviation at Falconview Hostel as a Community Development Project - CLICK HERE -

The AUGUST "Tour de Belize" mountain bike race into the Belize Alps from Falconview Back Back Adventure Hostel. for the coveted AUXILLOU CHALLENGE TROPHY. We do mountain bike adventure touring up into the mountains also for groups.

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CLICK HERE FOR THE MOUNTAIN BIKE RACE IN THE BELIZE ALPS!

From Belize City the port to Falconview out WEST
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Map of Western Highway

Getting to Falconview Back Pack Adventure Hostel? Take a taxi from the Caye Caulker water tax station to the Bus Terminal. Catch a bus to Santa Elena. It stops in the capital enroute at Belmopan. After it leaves the capital, the bus stops at villages out West and when you slow, or stop to pass a Police Check Point, you know you are arriving at Santa Elena town. Quarter mile on your right is Plasmet Hardware and a hundred yards past that is your STOP where you exit the bus. This is the SANTA ELENA TOWN EXIT 66 1/2 mile. It is a sleeping policeman, which is a ridge across the road to force vehicles to stop and slow down. EXIT HERE! There is a sign for HILLVIEW on the corner and one for Eden High School up the hill. There may be a general Highway EXIT 66 1/2 sign on the road side indicating you have arrived. Falconview is up the hills a half a mile hike on the slope of GREEN PARROT VALLEY. There are usually chickens running across the road, horses eating grass, kids playing marbles on the dirt road. Takes about 15 minutes to walk. There is a T junction up the side road after the High School on your left, turn left at the T junction and up a low hill past a telephone booth on your right, an Adventists church on your left and three corners down the hill from here on Earth Street, you make a right and it is one block over among the hundred houses in Hillview on this valley slope. There is a nice view across the Belize River valley to the Yalback Hills to the North. Hillview on the side slope of Green Parrot Valley has a Cheese Factory, Betty's store, the Backpackers Adventure Hostel with accomodations for groups, beds and camping, there is also a Cabinet Factory.

Tour Operators for different adventure groups pickup and leave guests here who take daily trips.

Coming from Guatemala, your best bet is a taxi. For $10 bz or $5 usa, they will deliver you all the way from the Guatemalan border to the Hostel in Hillview.

-ACCOMODATIONS, CAMPING, FREE KITCHEN, T.V. ROOM-

Tourists in hammock room.
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Hostel is better than most local hotels who charge 4 times as much.

April 2009 photo of Falconview Backpackers Hostel
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New annex finished in March of 2009. Two furnished apartments for rent and an extra dormitory

Falconview Backpackers Hostel 2006 photo
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see the next photo for larger facility accomodating 16 now.

Ray paragliding in the mountains at age 65 years.
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Damned old fool!

This is me paragliding in the mountains!

This is another web page for our place! CLICK HERE! My daughter made a better web page than I did. She is more technical minded - GRIN!

Hostels for adventurers in Belize! CLICK HERE!

ACTUN TUNICHIL MUKNAL the No.#1 ADVENTURE in the whole Mayan Empire covering three countries. CLICK HERE!

Local pyramids of Cahel Pech, Xununtanich and the portage on the Mopan River for thousands of years of Clarissa Falls.

This is a blog newsletter with lots of photographs covering WESTERN BELIZE RECREATIONAL AREA. Kept up to date several times weekly. CLICK HERE!

ADVENTURES IN WESTERN BELIZE - 2007 -

(PACKAGES OF TOURS)
2 DAY
4 DAY
6 DAY
8 DAY

You can go fancy, or low budget in Cayo West the mountain district of Belize. Full day Adventure Tour packages tend to be done by the same group of experienced licensed tour operators who serve all hotels and lodges alike. Tour prices may be more expensive from upscale accommodations, who add on arrangement fees. Lowest prices are through "Falconview Tourist Backpackers Adventure Hostel" in Santa Elena Town the low budget area, where Tour Operators pickup guests directly from the front desk and deliver them back there. There are no add on fees.

You can go to the Cayo Western Mountainous District by ordinary bus for $3 usa from the coastal port, or rent a car and drive yourself, or fly to Central Farm airstrip by charter plane and be picked up. There are campgrounds, hostels, guest houses, hotels, remote farms and lodges to fit every budget.

For a TWO day brief package I would recommend the two Mayan ruins of XUNUNTANICH and CAHEL PECH spanning the classic and pre-classic period of 3000 years. The second day to the cave ceremonial sacrificial center deep underground, of ACTUN TUNICHIL MUCKNAL.

For a FOUR day adventure package, take your pick of ZIP LINING THE JUNGLE CANOPY and tubing CAVES BRANCH RIVER through the caves and a long trip to CARACOL, a Mayan city complex which once ruled the Mayan Empire.

For a SIX day adventure package make a day trip to TIKAL in Guatemala from Santa Elena Town and then canoe downstream the flowing, nature rich, MACAL RIVER GORGE.

For an EIGHT day adventure package you have many choices to include. From ultra light mountain flying, remote jungle farm guesthouses, butterfly farms, orchid farms, horseback riding, professinal archery, camping trips into the Belize Alps, or a visit to the remote 1600 foot Hidden Valley Falls in the Roaring Creek Gorge.

On Caye Caulker, either "Tina's beachfront Tourist Backpackers Adventure Hostel", or next door upscale" Auxillou Beach Suites" can phone in a reservation at Falconview Tourist Backpackers Adventure Hostel in Western Belize. Or phone yourself 663 5580. They will even make your prepaid reservations on the island. All cell phones are expensive pay calls, and you should pay any person phoning for you at least $5 Bz ( about $2.50 ) for the courtesy.

All day Adventure tours are dependent on space available. There are several Tour Operators that specialize in different expeditions, with expensive equipment. Go West and do your own arranging, or have your Western accommodations book you into expeditions. This is usually a courtesy service of wherever you find accommodation. You haven't experienced Belize if you miss this frontier mountainous Western Cayo District. A week disappears very fast when you are having fun each day. I always wonder at scuba divers who go to the Great Barrier Reef cayes and spend oodles of money to make an expensive dive trip to the Blue Hole of Lighthouse Reef Atoll. Myself and Jim Lockwood who chartered my 34 foot motorsailer in 1973 dove to the bottom of that Blue Hole on compressed air. Jim was a crazy nut and had done over 500 feet many times. It was my first time experiencing tunnel vision and the drunkedness that comes with nitrogen narcosis. I always felt the wall dive WEST of Half Moon Caye was a better experience. But from 50 years of knocking around this part of the world, my choice of the most dramatic adventure would be the TWO day adventure in which you do XUNUNTANICH and CAHEL PECH the first day to assimulate history and then the second day underground in the Mayan world of XIBALBA at the ceremonial sacrifical place. That adventure hits you in the gut much more than a BLUE HOLE scuba dive, though the dive is a status symbol in the scuba world. Each has a place. A Blue Hole scuba dive though in my opinion, should be balanced by the TWO day adventure trip in Western Belize to really grasp the essence of what a marvelous adventurous pioneer country Belize is.



Marimba band playing at Falconview Hostel
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Location of the Maya Mountain Folk Music Festival

IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN THE MAYAN HISTORY OF BELIZE THEN CLICK HERE! This is a FREE ONLINE book you can read right on the web, by the Falconview Hostel owners.

Magana Pottery Works
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local mayan pottery done the ancient way

ACTUN TUNICHIL MUCKNAL, CAVE TOUR GETS RAVE REVIEWS FROM TOURISTS!
by Ray Auxillou

Winter tourists are really raving about the Actun Tunichil mucknal cave tour in Western Cayo District of Belize. It has to be the most talked about adventurous expedition in the three countries of the Mayan Empire? Recent low budget tourists staying at FALCONVIEW TOURIST BACKPACKERS ADVENTURE HOSTEL, in Santa Elena Town were extremely voluble and excited about their trip to the Mayan underground cave ritual ceremonial center. In between the Christmas and New Year's holidays, the water inside the cave was a bit higher than usual. They were picked up, by Tour Guide Operator at the front desk of FALCONVIEW in Hillview, Santa Elena Town and returned two days later, estatic and fantastically happy.
It was more than they expected! Adventurous, scary and the kind of tour, only college and university age students on the semester break could appreciate. From Montana, these outdoor types, with hard hats, head lamps, rappelling ropes, camping gear and food, they left Falconview Hostel, to see the indescrible ceremonial underground center called by the ancient Maya, XIBALBA.
To get there from the car park is a 45 minute hike and at this season of the year a muddy trail and three crossings, wading Roaring Creek are necessary, just to get to the entrance of this forbidden mysterious cave entrance. The subterranean caves themselves are known to go back at least three miles, but archeologists say the Maya only penetrated a little less than a mile.
Inside the cave system is a lower series of caves and then after swimming across the underground river with the slow moving current ( the water wasn't cold ), they then climbed into the upper cave system. It is here that hundreds of pottery jars, most of which are broken in ceremonial fashion, but there are some whole ones, and fourteen skeletons lay, dead from blunt force trauma to the head, obviously sacrifical victims. In this section, the Tour Guide insist visitors wear only socks, so as not to disturb this now famous archeological site. since one is underground, the blackness is impenetrable without the feeble beam of a head lamp. One can only imagine the terror of victims, thousands of years ago, being taken deep underground using pine splint torches. One could never find your way back out without some sort of light.
The girls were more descriptive than the men who tend to be taller, silent strong types. While the men could wade the inner underground river in their bathing suits, using tippy toes to scrabble from one rock to another, against the slow moving current of the underground river, with the water at chest height. The tourist girls described being unable to keep their feet on the rocks, as the water rose up to their chins. They ended up swimming the short crossing distance to the upper cave system. All this in impenetrable blackness.
Rappelling was another adventure for both girls and boys as they had never done it before. The fearful description of concentrating on following instructions to use the ropes and hand grips, while dangling over the dark seeming abyss, with ropes disappearing below and only the head lamp to see what they were doing, filled them with fright. In hindsight, back at FALCONVIEW TOURIST BACKPACKERS ADVENTURE HOSTEL in Hillview, Santa Elena Town, after it was all over. The two days they spent ( you can do this in one day if you want ( they declared, was the ultimate highlight of their trip. This says something about the ACTUN TUNICHIL MUCKNAL adventure trip, as these guests already had spent four days and been to TIKAL on a day trip, to CARACOL on a day trip, covered CAHEL PECH and XUNUNTANICH on a day trip and also tubed the caves of CAVES BRANCH RIVER and the ZIP LINE adventure in the high jungle canopy. Four or five days disappear fast when you are having adventurous fun.
The Mayan calendar was adopted from the OLMEC calendar of 6000 years ago and the Mayan circular calendar, a 5000 year circular time span is due to expire in December, 2012, just six years from now. The Olmecs of the Olmec Empire we now know, came from Africa in the warming period after the last Ice Age started melting some 13,000 years ago. Atlantis of the Mediterranean, and the Minoan civilization, or Alexander the Great, or Ghengis Khan, or the Greek Empire, or even the Roman Empire, of modern history was still thousands of years in the future, when the Olmec Empire and later Mayan Empre started here.
I would love to hear the stories of their adventures on Caye Caulker, after they spend another week at TINA'S TOURIST BACKPACKERS ADVENTURE HOSTEL. Talk about good planning and an exhausting vacation, this group certainly did a lot to explore Belize.
Internet web pages on this tour are at: http://folkmusicfl.tripod.com/actuntunichilmucknal/ and also at: http://folkmusicfl.tripod.com/adventuresinbelize/

CAHEL PECH AND XUNUNTANICH HILLTOP PYRAMID RUINS

We like visitors to take in the Cahel Pech, Clarissa Falls and Xununtanich, as this gives the best snapshot historical picture of the many ruins around the area. There are many temple ruins, but these two we judge the best. The time span of history is roughly 3000 years for both pyramids. Cahel Pech came first, sitting on top of a hill overlooking the twin agriculture towns of San Ignacio and Santa Elena. Just over the crest of the land is the Macal River coming out of the gorge. Obviously for the period which is pre-classic, this ceremonial center about 6 acres in size and comprising some 34 buildings governed the trade between what is today the Belize Interior and remote Belize Alps. From 900 BC to 1000 AD the archeologists say. There are seven plazas in all.

Xununtanich some eight miles away controlled the Mopan river trading route into the Peten Kingdoms, or central Maya area, and is more recent from AD 600 to AD 1000, the classic Maya period.

Clarissa Falls is a ridge of rock about 5 feet high, across the Mopan River, which is scenic and even today would have to be traversed by a portage.

The Spanish and Pirate explorers arrived about 500 years after the Xununtanich ruins were abandoned. Archeologists say an earthquake damaged the city complex on top of the hill badly around AD 900. Both the Mopan River and Macal River join together down below in the twin towns forming the water river route to the coast known now as the Belize river.

Those interested in RETIRING in Belize, CLICK HERE!

This is the apartment for rent webpage in the annex of Falconview Hostel. CLICK HERE for photos!

For a single woman's story of life in the Caribbean, this is my youngest daughter Tina with hostels in Belize and Honduras. CLICK HERE! HOW TO DO IT!

Caribbean coastal travel information on water taxis, buses, small airplanes between Honduras, Guatemala, Belize and Mexico. CLICK HERE for 2008 updates.

Tours and Expeditions change their rates without notice, but this was the 2008 general prices of adventures by tour operators in Western Belize in January, 2008. CLICK HERE!

Hydroponics Organic Experimental Vegetable Nursery
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Belize Development Trust project at FALCONVIEW HOSTEL

Hurricane Dean party
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I survived Hurricane Dean at Falconview Hostel 2007

For photographs of our Spanish Colonial Mission style apartment for rent at the hostel annex CLICK HERE! Rates are $45 usa per day, and we have a weekly and monthly rate. Plus taxes.

FALCONVIEW HOSTEL in Belize, rated as MORE THAN EXCELLENT ( 5 star quality ) in the 2008 European multi-language, BACKPACKERS HOSTEL GUIDE BOOKS.

FALCONVIEW BACKPACKERS ADVENTURE HOSTEL

Hillview/Santa Elena town in the foothills of the Belize Alps on the slope of Green Parrot Valley.
COMMENT PUIS-JE-M'Y RENDRE? Wie komme ich dort hin? Come arrivarci? Como se llega?

- WESTERN BELIZE HIGHWAY EXIT 66 1/2 -

If you travel by bus, leave it at Mile Exit 66 1/2 the entrance to Santa Elena Town. Ask the bus conductor to tell you when to get off, at the Eden High School side road as you enter Santa Elena Town just up the hill from the police Red Creek Checkpoint for vehicles. If you phone us when catching your bus to come out Western Belize, we will meet you at the bottom of the hill with our pickup truck. The Hillview side road is across the street and the hostel is a 1/2 mile hike up about 150 feet in altitude in that distance. If you miss this stop, the next stop is across the river in San Ignacio Town. Here you stand a GOOD chance of getting ripped off with tall tales and stories by taxi drivers, or street people, if you are gullible enough to listen to them. Any vehicle with a green license plate is a taxi and you can catch a ride for $7 bz to Falconview Backpack Hostel if you don't want the 15 minute walk up and down hill. Negotiate, fares as the price is not set and you may share the vehicle with somebody in it, which should make it cheaper for you.

Coming from Guatemala, if you negotiate with different taxi drivers, you can always find one leaving Immigration who has had a poor day and will take you and friend to our Hostel some 12 miles from the border for $10 Bz, or in USA. Depending on your bargaining skills. Which is a bargain price! ( Dec. 1st, 2007 update-- ) Things are changing as the new 2008 season fast approaches. The border post taxi drivers have formed a UNION and are now charging $30 Bz for the car ( cram as many in as you can! ) to the twin towns. Our hostel is in the twin towns.

We get a lot of complaints about taxi driver rip-offs from taxis found down in the banking area and center of San Ignacio Town, across the river from us. People ask for our low budget excellent hostel and are often told lies to jack up the taxi price, or convince you to go to some cousin of theirs, who has a shack in the boonies, or something. ALWAYS negotiate your fare, BEFORE you get in a taxi and don't believe anything they say. It is not uncommon for ripoff taxi drivers to try and charge you double, or triple the going rate if they can get away with it. Some will quote you a dollar price you believe is in Belizean currency, then insist later you pay US currency, which is double the cost. There are nice taxi drivers, just keep asking until you get one that will take you around for the local going rate, which is $7 Bz, or $3.50 USA, or $1.75 Euro. Don't believe any taxi driver who says it is raining and he wants more, or the road is bad, he has to charge more. ALL the roads are bad out here. Nor take their recommendations for someplace else. It will cost you a LOT of MONEY! I mean a lot, in ripoff taxi fares and accomodations that are sub standard, but charging outrageous prices in US currency.

It is a case of BUYER BEWARE! Be sure you know what you are going to pay, for what they say and whereever it is in distance, before you enter the car. If you phone us and it is not late at night, we can sometimes come and pick you up.

Combien coute une nuit? Wieviel Kostet es pro Nacht? Quant'e il prezzo per notte? Cual es el precio por noche?

BED RATES in the dormitory are $11 usa per night for the 2008 season, if you have your own tent and sleeping bag you can get a discount and camp in the grounds outside and use the kitchen facility and bathrooms. We also have a furnished apartment.

tel: Belize 663 5580

e-mail: Hillviewhacienda@yahoo.com

CLICK HERE to contact us:

YOU WANT A TWO DAY, FOUR DAY, SIX DAY, OR AN EIGHT DAY SET OF ADVENTURES THROUGHOUT THE HILLS AND MOUNTAIN ATTRACTIONS OF WESTERN BELIZE. YES! WE CAN DO ALL THAT LOGISTICAL ARRANGING FOR YOU. WE DON'T EVEN CHARGE YOU FOR IT, SO LONG AS YOU STAY AT OUR HOSTEL. WE NOW HAVE A ONE BEDROOM FURNISHED APARTMENT FOR COUPLES AND FAMILIES, TO GO ALONG WITH THE HOSTEL DORMITORY.

Thanks for visiting our website. Our hostel rates as your "home away from home", and place to park your valuables while doing adventures, are only $11 usa per bed night, plus tax, during the 2008 season. You can stay all winter long for $330 a month.

Para Espanol !

Have a good time! YOU ONLY GO AROUND ONCE BABY!