Since I was going to be in Placencia for an extended period of time, I searched for lodging that would provide me with a full kitchen. I also wanted to stay somewhere within walking distance of Placencia Village. I found lovely rustic lodging at Harry's Cozy Cabanas. Not only was there a private beach, but fruit literally falling off the trees.
The fruit was so amazing: pineapple so delicate you could eat the core... starfruit with a perfect balance of tart and sweet flavor... bananas so complex in flavor they should be tasted like fine wine... the mangoes oh, the mangoes, so spectacular and exotically delicious... For a "raw" vegan, there was certainly and abundance of food. Of course, there were plenty of avocados and a variety of vegetables (cabbage, broccoli, tomatoes, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, celery, carrots, cucumbers) at the local markets.
I was able to prepare plenty of exotic salads and veggie/fruit plates, spiced up with a dash of Marie Sharp's Hot Sauce or Exotic Sauce. At the grocery stores, it was easy to find the staples for preparing vegan cooked food: coconut oil, olive oil, rice, beans, pasta, yellow split peas, granola, soy milk, and some of them even sold almond milk.
Eating out at restaurants was easy for a "cooked food vegan" - most all restaurants had a variety of vegetable stir-fry dishes. Best of all, most all of them also understood what "vegan" meant. There was also the option of the traditional Belizean plantains and rice-and-beans. (Ask if the beans are cooked with pork/meat; this was not the case at the places I ate. Usually the stewed beans and rice would be prepared with pork.) At The Secret Garden Restaurant, the chef offered to alter a multitude of dishes to be prepared vegan -- the curry was spectacular along with the black bean soup. The Shak served the best, perfectly seasoned veggie and rice dishes, although B.J.'s was pretty good for the creole vegetable plate. For dessert, Tutti Frutti, the local gelateria serves the most delicious fruit sorbetto (all flavors are vegan except the coconut). For coffee, Above Grounds, offers soy milk beverages (and free WiFi).
Lots of places also had fresh fruit juices (made by blending fruit and water then straining it) as well as fresh coconut water. (At B.J's Restaurant I saw the guy walk behind the building with a machete He came back with a whole coconut that he had hacked open and put a straw in it!)
Perhaps the best place, or at least my favorite place, was The Shak for their smoothies. They use real fruit, fresh fruit. There was a huge variety of combinations. Raw vegan heaven. They were also keen to make substitutions/modifications -- anything with diary, such as the traditional and very popular "seaweed shake", could be made with soy milk instead.
In a "coconut shell", Placencia is paradise: "barefoot perfect" as they say, a perfect vacation spot for vegans, raw foodies, and SCUBA divers!
If you're thinking of traveling to Belize and have more questions about Placencia, please post a comment below.
Thanks for this post! I'm heading to Belize for vacation in a month and it's nice to know that I'll have options :) Can't wait to taste all the fresh fruit!!ReplyDelete
Considering a trip to Belize in Jan or Feb 2015 and I eat raw vegan food (but could include a small amount of cooked). Any tips on where to stay, all inclusives, eco friendly places would be appreciated. It seems off grid places to stay are in the jungle and I would enjoy beaches with lots of swimming, snorkelling, scuba (you get the idea). Have heard Belize City is not good place to stay for many reasons. Placencia Village sounds good - can you tell me more about it? And above all I wanted to thank you for sharing your experiences for the benefit of others! MaureenReplyDelete
I am a raw vegan thinking of moving to Belize. Are there raw vegans living there now?ReplyDelete
I don't know of any raw vegans living there. I certainly think there would be a market for opening a restaurant/juice bar if you were interested in that sort of thing.Delete