“With every drop of water you drink, every breath you take, you’re connected to the sea. No matter where on Earth you live.” – Sylvia Earle
For those fortunate to live near the ocean, that connection is even more pronounced. Placencia, in particular, has always been a community of seafarers. From the ancient Maya who would fish and take salt from the area to the pirates who sought shelter in the Placencia lagoon, to the Kriol and Garifuna fishers that founded the two communities on the peninsula, to their descendants who ply the seas showing people from all over the world the wonder that is our swath of the Caribbean Sea.
The expanse of blue that stretches out its arms from the eastern coast of the peninsula offers much in the way of adventure and relaxation. From SCUBA diving, the world’s second-largest barrier reef, to simply relaxing in a hammock on an almost deserted island, the coastal waters of Placencia have something for everyone.
The southern portion of the Belize Barrier Reef system does not see the level of traffic as some of the sections further north and, as such, is less impacted by human activity. The reef walls here offer plenty in the way of coral formations, creatures, and, if you’re lucky, encounters with large pelagic fauna like reef sharks, turtles, and even whale sharks. Snorkelers are not left out of the fun as the two marine parks that are directly off the coast of the peninsula offer plenty for novices and experienced snorkelers alike. Laughingbird Caye National Park features beautiful coral formations just off the white sand beach and the Gladden Spit Silk Cayes Marine Reserve. In addition to vibrant coral, it features an area that is home to a resident loggerhead sea turtle, along with his retinue of nurse sharks, spotted eagle rays, and southern stingrays.
The waters off the coast of the Placencia Peninsula are a fly fisherman’s dream. Home to tarpon, bonefish, and the elusive permit, a grand slam (catching all 3 fish species in one day) is a real possibility. Fishermen who are more interested in catching dinner (as opposed to catch and release fishing) will find many different snapper and grouper species in the area, along with kingfish, barracuda, and dorado (mahi-mahi). Outside the reef, billfish can be found, along with wahoo and other denizens of the deep.
Maybe snorkeling, diving, and fishing aren’t your thing. Or you’re wiped out from spending most of the day doing any or all of the above. Fear not; go-slow is a high priority here. There are many low-key places to just relax on the beach or even grab a drink and a bite to eat. Moho Caye charges travelers a small fee to use their beach and facilities, and places like Ray Caye and King Lewey’s are happy to provide mariners with grub and libations.
By no means is this an exhaustive list of the seafaring activities available to you from the Placencia peninsula and Naia Residences. This overview is meant to whet your appetite and give you a general idea of the type of lifestyle you, your family, and your friends and guests can expect to enjoy as homeowners here. Rest assured that here at Naia, you will definitely be able to get your regular dose of vitamin sea!