Becoming tacogirl.com Timeline
I never dreamt moving to Belize would become a globally loved writer and owner of my own business tacogirl.com. It all started back in 2004 with my first visit to Belize. I fell in love the minute I walked off the plane. By the end of my 3-week vacation, I was sold and ready to move. In 2006 I moved to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye from downtown Toronto and never looked back. January never looked so beautiful. tacogirl.com History Since its inception, tacogirl Belize blog has assisted many people in having great vacations or moving to Belize. tacogirl blog has also gone to school (4 courses, a writers retreat and a couple of travel blog classes), been published in guidebooks and travel magazines.
2007: tacogirl.com was born and it was an instant internet hit with people who were missing their beloved vacation hot spot, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye Belize. At the time the professional Belize blogger niche was untapped and everyone was hungry to see more.
2008: Islands Magazine September issue. 10 Best Islands to Live On, feature article affordable paradise in the Caribbean. Submission about the life of an Expat and moving to Ambergris Caye, Belize. I shared my personal experience with readers on falling in love with Belize, the process of moving, and how I still love it just as much, years later.
2009: Time for some log school in April 2009 with my first course Authority Blogger. Although I had already been running a successful blog for two years, I believed that this would be an asset for myself and my readers.2010: 20 Best Islands to Live On August issue of Islands Magazine. Published in the What’s for dinner? section. I provided both tourists and future ex-pats delicious local food options. I also shared a few things I missed from my other life and let everyone know I had no regrets in moving to Belize.
2011: Featured resource in Great Destinations Belize Guide Book and thanked in the acknowledgments. It is rewarding helping travelers take the guesswork out of travel and have a wonderful vacation in a foreign country. Also listed as an insightful online resource and the place to go for discounts. Published in Islands Magazine 20 Best Islands to Live On Islands Magazine August issue. In the Top 5 Islands for smooth transitions area, informing readers about Belize currency and entry fee Marco Gonzalez Maya Site, how the rush hour is mostly bikes and golf carts and beach is a 10-minute walk from almost anywhere. Published in Belize News Exchange Magazine in October about the benefits of aquafit.
2012: Moon Living Abroad in Belize. Guidebook submission Laidback living on Ambergris Caye. As a blogger, it is important to be a good resource for readers. Not only writing for tourism but also writing for the many people that come to Belize, fall instantly love and want to move here like I did. Also published in Belize News Exchange Magazine Oct 2012 with two articles, destination weddings, and crocodile excursion.
2013: tacogirl.com was invited to fly from Belize to Mexico in November to cover the fantastic food festival Taste of Playa as it celebrated its 5th Anniversary in Playa Del Carmen.
2014: It was an honor to shake hands with Governor-General of Belize Sir Colville Young as he handed me a volunteer award in Roaring Creek Belize.
2015: tacogirl.com was invited to be a speaker at the first Digital Marketing Summit hosted by the Belize Tourism Board. Belize Tourism Board. The organization also called upon tacogirl.com to be a judge to both the islands of Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker for their national tourism awards. That was a great opportunity and a wonderful awards party.
2016: USA Today Travel article, travel bloggers picks on the world’s best picnic spots. This was a fun piece to submit and was based on the write up The Cave Beyond Secret Beach, which is about a little-known underwater cave just beyond what was a favorite secluded island picnic spot.
2017: June and tacogirl.com decided to go back to school with the Six Figure Blogger course. She also did a 4-day ocean crossing sailing from Belize to Roatan, what a great adventure.
2018: A trip to Dangriga, Belize changed my life forever as it got me involved helping the Belize Cancer Center with monthly flight code donations and now since Covid-19 has grounded everyone through sponsored posts.
2019: This year mixed school and vacation taking an In the trees writers retreat in Benque Viejo Del Carmen Belize followed by a great San Ignacio vacation.
2020: Nothing like a pandemic to get you back to learning more new things. Superstar Blogging Course and Blog Boot Camp are tacogirl.com’s chosen covid-19 learning options.
Volunteering in Belize
Over the years tacogirl.com has blogged about many local organizations to help them get the word out. Currently, the main charitable work is with the Belize Cancer Center in Dangriga and the Belize Cancer Society San Pedro Chapter.
Other places tacogirl.com has volunteered with to help them get the word out, raise funds or food. Hope Haven Shelter, Sunshine Foundation (school scholarships). Saga Humane Society, Cayo Animal Welfare Society, Darryl’s KIds, Belize Red Cross San Pedro Branch and Mama Vilma’s Home.
Marketing and Branding
I work very hard at branding and marketing the tacogirl.com name. In my writing, I tend to use a more personal storytelling style, as many of my posts are about what life is like in Belize. From a tourist and expat standpoint, it is important to find the right way of saying things without sugar coating issues. I prefer to take an education and awareness type approach instead of coming across too harsh and negative or sweeping issues under the carpet. Truth Be Told About Crime in San Pedro and I Was a Bad Girl.
As part of one of my courses mentioned above, I signed up to be critiqued and got two thumbs up on my blog design. Chris from Authority Blogger said “tacogirl.com, slideshow pictures make you want to be in there and the style is fantastic.” While I was very pleased with such great feedback from a well-known blogger, I believe that one is never done learning. I continue to study so I can keep improving my blog. This includes SEO training, research on tourism trends, social media, bloggers groups, courses, webinars and books.
Pink Pangea travel writing blog site course critique: “tacogirl blog looks great and very valuable for travelers to Belize.”
*Featured image headshot by Karen Brodie Photography