* Experience tossing a cast net to catch your own shrimp and even have them cooked up for you!
* Watch endangered crocodiles in their natural secure habitats while you learn about these magnificent reptiles and crocodile conservation.
* Climb a bird tower, enjoy the view and try to identify as many species of birds as you can count.
* Explore, Eat, Drink and be merry during one of Chukka Tour’s latest adventure
It’s an unlikely combination, a shrimp farm and a crocodile sanctuary, but Chukka Belize makes it happen in one exciting and educational tour. It’s the latest package that the tour company has come up with to bring you more of the Belizean experience. Chukka’s Crocodile Encounter and Shrimp Farm package is both thrilling and delectable.
Yup! I found myself getting up close to crocodiles in their natural habitat and casting my net to catch shrimp which I would eventually eat at the end of the tour. Since the crocodile sanctuary is located within the grounds of Belize District’s only organic shrimp farm, it was easy for Chukka to pair up these two experiences into one great package.
The adventure takes place at Caribbean Shrimp Farm, a 266-acre farm that is a small sustainably-minded shrimp farm located in the heart of Belize. The property is surrounded by privately protected wetland habitat. The farm is home to the new “Captain Hook’s Shrimp Restaurant and Croc Bar” and ACES Educational Crocodile Eco-Sanctuary.
The tour begins at the restaurant where you go over the menu to choose how you want your shrimp prepared – in a sandwich, coconut crusted, shrimp burger or their delightful peal & eat platter. At the end of the tour your plate of fresh cooked shrimp will be waiting for you at Captain Hook’s Shrimp Restaurant.
The group is then taken to the shrimp ponds where the tour guide does a great job at educating you on the operations of the farm. Mind you that he is in full pirate costume to go along with the theme of Captain Hook’s Restaurant. The educational shrimp farm tours teach you how these tiny crustaceans grow into the delicious shrimp we love to eat.
The first stop is at the edge of one of the ten ponds of the compound where the shrimp farmers teach you how to cast a net in to the pond to haul in some shrimp. FUN! A bit tricky, but you can try as many times as you desire until you get it right.
After lunch is caught, you hop into the tour van off to an exploratory ride to the ACES Crocodile Sanctuary. The highlight of the day will be meeting George, the famous giant American crocodile that was relocated there from Ambergris Caye after too much human intervention/interaction was creating a dangerous situation for both the animal and residents of the island. George and a few of his croc friends have been placed in natural pens and are very well taken care off by the professionals of ACES. These large crocodiles have gotten too big and dangerous to be relocated into the wild.
Chris Summers, our expert crocodile tour guide, was very knowledgeable in the field and was super helpful in answering all our questions about these amazing apex predators. He shared with the group the importance of the preservation of these threatened and protected animals in Belize. The farm is home to two species of crocodiles, the American Crocodile ad the Morlet Crocodiles which you get to see after you have seen George up close and personal.
The Morlets are much smaller than the American Crocodiles and they share a giant pen. You view them in their natural habitat as you walk across a bridge over their pond. Chris throws a few chicken parts to them and you see them enjoying a good snack.
Just by participating in this educational tour you are directly contributing to ACES efforts to protect an endangered species in Belize.
After all that excitement it is back to the restaurant for the final part of the tour – enjoying the fresh organic shrimp that you just learned to catch at the beginning of the tour. You can call yourself a shrimp fisherman at that point.
Cool off, relax and enjoy the atmosphere while you experience the freshest shrimp you will ever eat – from the pond into your plate. No chemicals, no preservatives, just the best tasting organically raised shrimp.
The restaurant has a tall watch tower that you can climb after the hearty lunch to enjoy the magnificent few of the natural habitat in which the shrimp farm is situated. There you can experience some bird watching; amateur and professional birdwatchers alike will be overwhelmed by the abundant variety of birds that they can catch a glimpse of.
In all, Chukka’s Crocodile Encounter and Shrimp Farm package is much fun. It is packed in a short morning tour, one that visitors on the way out of the country can take just before taking their flights back home. The farm is located 1.5K from Belize’s Phillip Goldson International Airport road junction. But the tours are open all day between 8:00a.m. to 5:00p.m. Make your arrangements with Chukka today!!!