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Thanksgiving in Belize

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The LIG sailing's 2005 cruise in Belize.

  Dates:  November 18 to 26, 2005
Briefing at 4pm Friday, board at 6pm.
    Updated length of trip: 8 days and 8 nights.

Destination:  Pristine waters of Placencia, Belize
Local language: English with Spanish and Caribe

Weather in Belize

bulletTemps: 74 to 84 F year around (23-28 C) 
bulletWinds: Easterly trades at 15-22 knots
bullet Current weather report

Belize is tucked in the tropics between Mexico and Guatemala, formerly British Honduras. It has the second longest barrier reef system in the world.   Many shallows and coral make this destination a diving and snorkeling gem.  It is also an excellent starting point for Maya, jungle and natural history land tours.  

More information:

bulletMooring's Belize Base 
bulletExtended trip with land excursions
bulletA possible  7 day itinerary

More Belize Information

bulletTouring Belize by Net
bulletDiving Photo Gallery for southern Belize
bullet Belize Map by Lonely Planet

Cost Estimate$1200 to $1400* plus airfare - see below

Airfare ideas:

Fly to Belize City (BZE) from Miami, Dallas and Houston.  Then another 45 minute plane ride to Placencia (PLJ).  

Plan to arrive by mid afternoon on 11/18, or come day(s) earlier which gives opportunity to check out Belize by land.

Some options (anybody suggest others?):

bulletSFO to BZE : TACA (one stop) $660.    (Joe got a $600 version of this flight from Stacy at Exito travel -800-655-4053 ext 8602) 
bulletThen BZE to PLJ: Tropic Air  about $154.    Maya Air about $148 ($74 each way).
bulletSFO or SJC to BZE : American $681.  Then BZE to PLJ: Tropic Air $154.  Depart 6:25am Fri, Arrive 5:20pm Fri (a little late, but doable: book through Moorings)
bulletInformation from "SideStep":. SFO to BZE is about >$50 less than SJC to BZE.
Deeper view of Belize

My Goal:  Most boats reserved reserved by March 1st.  Three have already been reserved.

For more details, call Joe at 408-735-7245, or email at

If you arrive early, ideas from Dan:

If I were you, Id spend time in Placencia it is much nicer than Belize city walk the beach, have a drink, check out Lolas art shop (even I bought a small 5x7 painting there) etc. If you stay there a night ahead, then Nautical Inn is a good place with good prices.

 There are other activities based out of Placencia e.g. Monkey River cruise, snorkeling, diving, etc. but some of this can be done from the sail boat. While sailing, Di and I might be interested in the Monkey River cruise and jungle walk if it works out. Moorings list other land activities you can do even while sailing.

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Sailboat Information

We've selected these boats. 

Boat Reservations  Layout
   Chico Boat (A)
Reserved 42 foot cat  -  click to enlarge

Moorings 4200 :   Detailed Stern Shot

Specs  -- Detailed Specs 
   Mono Boat (B)

Reserved 40 foot sloop  -  click to enlarge

Moorings 403

   Cocoa Boat (C)

Reserved 45 foot cat:   -  click to enlarge

Moorings 4500

 Detailed Specs 

Reservations  -- TRIP IS OVER

We will charter three boats.  First come, first served until we max out.   There are already four children on this trip, and no more will be accepted.   

How to join:

  1. Decide if a Belize sail sounds great and the November timing works for you.
  2. Call or email Joe for more information if needed.  408-735-SAIL (7245)
  3. Send $400 per person to reserve your berth.   
    bulletJoe Martinka
    1760 Laurentian Way
    Sunnyvale CA  94087
  4. Once your trip is confirmed by email from Joe, make your air reservations. 
  5. Bookmark  this page and check it often.
  6. Pre-cruise party/planning as well as job delegation in the fall.

Current Belize Signups

1 A Joe Martinka
(1st boat skipper)
full payment - boat paid for. depart: SFO to BZE via TACA F561 18 Nov 1235A arrive 18 Nov 940A  then BZE to PLJ on Maya Island Air arrive 18 Nov 120P (W2729)

returning: PLJ to BZE Maya Island Air 26 Nov 0210P,  then BZE to SFO  -TACA F411 26 Nov 510P arrive 26 Nov 1105P

2 A Dorian Martinka
3 A Peter Martinka
4 A Arielle Martinka
5 A Vicki Vickers full payment  
6 B Hugh Gregg
(2nd boat skipper - sloop)
Deposit on second boat reservation. AA2040 OAK 6:03 11/12 to DFW; AA2193 to BZE, arrive 3:32 pm
AA2194 BZE 4:35pm 11/28 to DFW; AA1237 to SFO 10:26pm
7 B Becky Failor
8 C Dan Geiszler (3rd boat skipper) Deposit on third boat reservation depart: SFO to BZE via AA F558 12 Nov 625A  arrive 12 Nov 3:32P  (to PLJ ??)

returning: (from PLJ??)  then BZE to SFO via AA F2194 27 Nov 435P arrive 27 Nov 1026P

9 C Diane Eaton
10 C Valentin Anders full payment

depart: San Jose to Belize (via Dallas) on AA 12 Nov Arriving 5:45 pm in Belize

returning: PLJ to SFO on AA 26 Nov, leaving 2:10pm, arrive 10:59pm

11 C Pam Miller full payment
12 C Don Cleland full payment  
13 C Michael Traynor full payment
  Maya Air, $148 per person, round trip
  11/18 Depart BZE 4:45PM Arrive PLJ 5:20PM
  11/26 Depart PLJ 2:20PM Arrive BZE 2:45PM
14 C Melissa Traynor
15 C? Jeff Martinka full payment depart: MNE to BZE via Con  517  18 Nov 752A arrive 18 Nov 209P  then BZE to PLJ on Maya Island Air arrive 18 Nov 520P

returning 27 Nov 319P.

16 A Lynne Izbicki full payment  depart: 11-18 AA 558 6:25AM SFO 3:32PM BZE then

returning: 2:25PM PLJ to BZE ,then AA 2194 4:35PM BZE   to SFO 10:26PM

17 A Katrina Goguen
18 A Amanda Goguen
19 B Corky Burgin, full payment  
20 B Jeff Dunham full payment Traveling from Macau
21 B Michelle Krick
22 B (Reserved by Corky) full payment  
23 A Andy Crabtree full payment depart: SFO to BZE via TACA F561 18 Nov 1235A arrive 18 Nov 940A  then BZE to PLJ on Maya Island Air arrive 18 Nov 120P (W2729)

returning: PLJ to BZE Maya Island Air 26 Nov 0210P,  then BZE to SFO  -TACA F411 26 Nov 510P arrive 26 Nov 1105P

24 A Stacey Greer

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Estimate:  $1220 per person  Chilren cost about $280 less.

This cost is estimated based on the expected number of people who sign up, the cost of the boat(s) that we have reserved, full provisioning (the food on board), beverages, bar and a small buffer.  Some items are estimates, and are based on previous cruises. 

Any trip payment not spent will be refunded after we get back from the trip. 

The deposit of $400 is non refundable if you decide not to go, and another person cannot be found to take your place.  Full payment will be due on August 10th.  For those on Boat A (Chico boat) there is a little more cost for trip insurance.

Assumptions for boat and provisioning estimate: 

Late November sail for 8 days and 7 nights.  
An extra pre-sail night is included - Friday on board the boats.
   (included in above estimate, saving hotel costs and affording an early Sat start)
Three Boats  - costs nearly evenly split among 23 persons
Full provisioning on boat $28/day/person,  children at 1/2 price
Beverage allowance of $200 per person, $30 for children
One kayak

Not Included

        This estimate does not include airfare, souvenirs, extra nights lodging or other touring in Belize. 

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 Official Sponsors

Electronic Drink Companion Ace Bartender for Pocket PC
Tropical Caribbean Novel A Salty Piece of Land by Jimmy Buffett
Battery Operated Thrills Relief Band - Western Marine or your pharmacy
Sunburn Treatment Meyer's Rum
Morning Companion Pete's Coffee
Hot, moist Recreation Bikram Yoga (but what did you expect?)

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Genesis of this trip

We had such a good time sailing in Mexico during Thanksgiving in 1997, that we thought to do something like it again.  We remember with delight the Thanksgiving feast on an otherwise deserted beach.  Twenty sailors celebrated their good fortune to be in delightful company on that night.

What's different this time? 

bulletEast side of the continent instead of the west, but still in the tropics.
bulletAdding a catamaran or two.
bulletOne boat will be spiced with some young souls.

Our optimum goal is to have two boats.  The first boat, a catamaran, will have some (darling) kids.   The optional 2nd and 3rd boats is intended to be exclusively adults.  This depends on the number of sailors and skippers who are interested.


Page updates

1/25 : first sailor signups, 1st boat reserved, and changed the dates (adding a boarding night)


1/29 : added airfare options


2/18:  confirmed some airfare and new crew signups and boat selection, recalculated trip cost estimates.


2/22:  added official sponsors, better weather links, names


3/3: added new sailor. Updated deposits.


3/8: added 4 new sailors and a new sponsor


3/11: added 2 new sailors.  Tentative boat assignments. Max of 4 to go.


4/1: added 1 new virtual sailor  3 to go.  Advertised in latitude 38.


5/17: added new air plans information.


6/18: added the last crew members to the trip.  We are optimized!


9/2: added more air information.  Payment status


1/13/06: wrapped up this page.


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