Belize is a small country located on the eastern coast of Central America, bordered by Mexico to the north and Guatemala to the west and south. Belize is known for its lush tropical rainforests, diverse wildlife, and beautiful Caribbean beaches. It is also home to the ancient Maya civilization.
The economy of Belize is based largely on agriculture, tourism, and offshore banking. The country’s unique culture and natural beauty make it a popular destination for tourists, while its proximity to the United States and Canada also makes it an attractive destination for retirees.
Belize, previously known as British Honduras, colonial history dates back to the late 1700s when the British established a logging camp in the region. Over time, the camp grew into a settlement, and the British government established control over the area.
After Guatemala broke away from the United Provinces of Central America in 1838, it claimed British Honduras as an inheritance from Spain. A treaty recognizing Belize’s territoriality was signed between Guatemala and Britain in 1859. The colony was officially named British Honduras in 1862.
Throughout the colonial period, various groups within the colony sought independence from British rule. In the 1950s and 1960s, the movement for self-rule gained momentum, and in 1964, the colony’s government was restructured to include a majority of elected members. On September 21, 1981, after a long process of negotiation with the British government, Belize finally gained its independence and was admitted to the United Nations as a sovereign state.
Belize is a culturally diverse country, with a population of approximately 400,031, made up of people from various ethnic backgrounds including Maya, Mestizo, Creole, Garifuna, and East Indian. All these groups have contributed to Belize’s cultural diversity and have created a unique blend of customs, traditions, and languages. This diversity is reflected in the country’s cuisine, music, arts and its way of life.
The official language is English, but Spanish, Creole and other indigenous languages are also widely spoken.