We had friendly, personalized service from our check in with Daisy, (hope I remembered right) right throughout our stay. Happy to report we did not need bug spray our whole time there which made exploring the jungle delightful at all hours.
Nature’s Kitchen Wholefood Restaurant staff were always there to offer suggestions and let us know what was coming up next. We enjoyed the open-air atmosphere and watching nature while we sipped our virgin pina colada and mocha happy hour smoothies and played dice before dinner.
We did two themed nights and nightly happy hour with half price smoothies and complimentary snacks. First came Creole night with Dee Dee. She also taught us that coconut husk makes a great pot cleaner after cooking over an open fire. She also talked a bit about the medicinal side of food and what was grown onsite, one of which was culantro. It has similar properties to cilantro and can be used as a liver cleanser. She also gave us some yummy Creole sweets for dessert, tablata coconut candy and peanut fudge to taste test.
Next night was Grill night with music and a bit of music history with Mr. Hugh Daly. He told us about the ‘good ole days’ and showed us how you could make music with a comb and tissue if you had to.
I also got to meet Elmer that night, the gentleman who arranged permission for our stay with Mr. Bart, (and once or twice Genevieve.) They were very accommodating when we had to postpone our original visit due to Heather’s heel Injury. That worked out well, as we happened to be heading back to San Ignacio to volunteer so we paired our trip with that.
A couple of the cleaning staff overheard us talking about a Mot Mot which was the cabin name beside us. It turned out to be a very fortuitous thing, as we found out it was a bluebird, the very thing Heather had been putting out there to the universe to come to her as a sign it was listening. Had the staff not volunteered the info, we may have missed it. We also may not have caught that, if Daisy had not moved us to a cabin without stairs to accommodate Heather.
While Heather was not quite up for it due to still recovering from her Achilles heel injury and being on crutches, I opted to do a grounds tour. Levi was an excellent grounds and garden guide. As we walked Levi told me how the garden was pesticide free and what they used. He pointed out various medicinal plants like fever grass which is wrapped in a bundle and boiled to make tea for sore throats or colds. I also learned that water vine can not only be used to quench your thirst in an emergency, it can also be used to help relieve pink eye because of its pure cold water. I also learned that the kale, parsley,, onion, chives, mint, cauliflower, carrots, zucchini, basil, bok choy, beets and lettuce that made it onto our plates were all from the on-site vegetable garden.
More About Our Jungle Experience
Aside from spending time in the company of great staff, we also enjoyed lounging at the pool, which has a great view of the Maya Mountains. While walking the grounds, it hit me – I missed how the tall jungle made me feel small. With over 70% of the grounds being towering rainforest,
with a huge variety of plants and flowers.
Our colorful cottage “Guacamaya” was a perfect rustic getaway and included a nice porch with a natural privacy wall, hammock, and a laundry line. Inside, we had a bunk bed and a queen. Since I gave Heather the larger bed at the Benque Writers Retreat, she told me I could have the bigger bed. I told her to enjoy feeling like a kid at camp 😀 Our cottage also had a desk and chair, dresser, aircon, private bath, hot showers, and a fan.
About Maya Mountain Lodge
Maya Mountain Lodge is a small full-service family run jungle lodge owned by Bart & Suzi Mickler. The lodge is conveniently located about 15 minutes from Maya Flats airport and only five minutes from downtown San Ignacio. Rooms vary from basic options to family-friendly cottages, and some are equipped with kitchenettes. Maya Mountain also offers weekly and monthly rates.
Dining is casual and friendly under a covered open veranda looking out on the jungle. For those who are into holistic healing and foods, the Wellness Center offers educational classes, wellness and cooking, and yoga. Individual health assessments and alternative healing is also available. The full-service spa is perfect for those who really want to relax and recharge on vacation.
They also offer all-inclusive Belize vacation packages, featuring a variety of exciting activities. There are four options to choose from and all packages start with dinner, feature 3 meals daily, and end with breakfast.
Daily happy hour
Daily Cultural night
Special diets (on request)
On and Off-Site Tours
Hiking, birding, and both guided and self tours of organic and tropical gardens are available. You can also do an Herb walk with Kim Ringland (my fabulous herbalist) and see their garden, and she will show you local herbs. Afterwards you will enjoy tea and a discussion of the herbs – snacks are available off the menu. The tour is very free form and casual – Kim is a lot of fun and very smart. She has both herbal and medical background and her locally made medicinal oils, tinctures, skincare, hormone cream, and first aid products are all great. Many of us use them in San Pedro. She has them available for sale at the tour.
If you want offsite adventure Actun Tunichil Muknal (also known as known as the Cave of the Crystal Maiden), the Crystal Cave, or Barton Creek caving expedition, or cave tubing at Jaguar Paw are all great options. Rather play Archeologist for a day? Caracol, Cahal Pech, Xunantunich Ruins are all in close proximity. With the Guatemala border being a 20 minute drive, touring Tikal is also an option. Just ask Elmer or Daisy to set you up.
We started out at San Pedro Airport and our flight stopped at Philip Goldson International along the way. The flight to Maya Flats was filled with interesting agriculture patterns, random farms and small towns. As soon as we got off the plane at Maya Flats Christian remembered Heather by name right away and offered her help because she was still on crutches. This time she was feeling good enough to decline his offer of further assistance other than her knapsack.
I had already arranged with our San Ignacio Cab driver Nestor 501 625 1017 via Whatsapp and shot him a quick text when we were close to landing. Sure enough, he showed up right on time. His pricing from Maya Flats Airport to Maya Mountain Lodge $30 BZ. at the end of our two days, we took a 15 minute transfer from Maya Mountain to our next San Ignacio destination $20 BZD
Check Tropic Air price options flying from San Pedro to Maya Flats San Ignacio, (or Philip Goldson International Airport.) Add them on WhatsApp to get discount alerts.
Another reason to fly back to San Ignacio and Cayo area, in our two recent trips there we did not catch a good shot of Xunantanich Maya site. Heather almost got one, but it would have been better if she had my high zoom Nikon. Unfortunately, the plane had done a cool drop to the left so my attention got caught on the other side. I was very lucky on that flight, as I had the middle seat with the back row all to myself, which was perfect for pivoting and taking pics from both sides.