Is Hopkins worth visiting in Belize?

by Kelly

Yes definitely! If you are interested in the culture of Belize, looking for a couple of quiet slow days to sit by the beach then Hopkins is for you! Its charm lies in the small sleepy village feel and local Garifuna culture.

All our blog posts contain affiliate links that help us keep our blog running at no extra cost to you! When you click on our links to book accommodation activities or transport we earn a very small commission. This costs no extra to you but helps to keep our blog online!

Where is Hopkins, Belize?

Located 135km from Belize City and only 32km from Dangriga, Hopkins is a tiny beachside town that is seeped in Garifuna culture. It is a little stretch of road with stalls and a few scattered restaurants, cafes and shops on the side. This small village feel makes Hopkins worth visiting in Belize.

Is Hopkins worth visiting?

Tiny Hopkins is worth visiting, especially if you are interested in the Garifuna culture. If you are looking for a quiet hamlet to totally relax without the pressure of too much to do then this is for you.

How long to stay in Hopkins?

We stayed two nights at The Lodge at Jaguar Reef and wished we had planned to stay longer. It really depends what you plan to do. If you’re doing lots of tours you’ll need a few days. Or if you just want to stay in town and look around overnight is fine. If you’re staying at The Lodge at Jaguar Reef then I would stay as long as I was able! If you are staying here then there is no question, Hopkins is definitely worth visiting in Belize!

Where to stay in Hopkins:

Best budget Hopkins accommodation:

Crash pad hostel and Funky Dodo Hostel are great budget options and right in the centre of town.

Best Luxury Hopkins accommodation:

The Lodge at Jaguar Reef-the best accommodation in Hopkins! It’s an experience of itself. We loved our stay here and highly recommend it! Read our full review of The Lodge at Jaguar Reef here.

Do you need a car in Hopkins?

While having a car to travel Belize is the best way you don’t really need one for Hopkins. It’s a tiny town and The Lodge at Jaguar Reef has free bikes to borrow and ride into town to look around. They also have good carts to rent if you prefer.

If you need a taxi or shuttle the best taxi driver is Mike, you can contact him on his Whats App number +501-638-7183. We used him to get from The Lodge at Jaguar Reef to the bus stop at the Hopkins Junction and he charged a really fair price. He is the cheapest in town and has a lot of taxi and shuttles that he can arrange. He helped us flag down our bus and get them to stop which was really nice of him. If you are using buses in Belize try to catch the Florindia buses, they are the most modern and comfortable, not much more expensive than the local either.

What to do in Hopkins? | Is Hopkins worth visiting in Belize?

There isn’t a lot to do in the actual town itself, which is part of its charm. The small village feel is one of the reasons that Hopkins is worth visiting in Belize. These are the things we enjoyed the most.

Stay at The Lodge at Jaguar Reef | Hopkins is worth visiting in Belize

This was the best part of visiting Hopkins. The absolute luxury of the sumptuous rooms, private plunge pool and excellent facilities made our time here a dream. It really is a luxurious sanctuary set in a charming seaside town. If you come to Hopkins then this is a must stay. They have free bikes you can ride in to explore the town or gold carts you can rent. Read about our full experience at The Lodge at Jaguar Reef!

Learn about the Garifuna culture.

You’ll find out all about the local culture, plants and beliefs. It’s an interesting dive into this aspect of Belize. The Garifuna culture is strong in Hopkins, you will find a love of art, food and dancing.

Garifuna Cultural and Culinary Experience in Hopkins Belize – visit Kalipuna Cultural Heritage Island and participate in hands on cooking classes learning authentic & traditional Garifuna recipes and methods. Talk about Garifuna History with elders. Explore the herbal garden, enjoy a mouthwatering Garifuna meal. End your day with a Garifuna drumming session.

Full Day Garifuna Cultural Immersion in Hopkins Village of Belize – Engage in fun-filled, educational and interactive cultural activities. Including Traditional Fishing, Cooking and Drumming thought by passionate and knowledgeable hosts. You’ll learn traditional techniques and knowledge that can be used for life.

Garifuna Drumming and Dancing Class in Hopkins Village Belize – participate in an interactive and captivating Garifuna drumming experience. Novice or professional you’ll find yourself swept away by the mesmerising melodies and vibrant spirit of Garifuna music taught by a master drummer.

Authentic Garifuna Cooking Class in Hopkins Village Belize – interactive hands-on opportunity to cook with a Garifuna Ambassador in an enchanting Garifuna village replica located on Kalipuna Heritage Island.

Cycle the streets

We loved riding around to explore the little village. It was an easy ride in to town from The Lodge at Jaguar Reef. We cycled along the road and into the tiny town and checked out all the cute spots!

The beachfront

The beachfront can be accessed from the town really easily and is a nice place to walk or swim.

beach at Hopkins, Belize

The pier

We found a pretty little pier and boats along the beachfront that we loved. It was a quiet shady spot that was lovely to relax at.

Best Tours from Hopkins

Hopkins is a great base to do tours from, these are the best we found:

Guided Bioluminescence Night Kayaking Adventure in Belize – a nighttime voyage takes you into a world that comes alive with the mysterious allure of bioluminescent algae. Your paddle strokes disturb the water, watch the dazzling display of bioluminescent on the lagoon.

Cockscomb Basin Waterfalls and Jungle Hike Tour – Cockscomb Basin Waterfalls and Jungle Hike Tour takes you on a journey through a wide range of flora and fauna, including jaguars, howler monkeys, and an incredible variety of birds.

ATM Cave – One of the most popular and impressive ceremonial caves. This is an all day tour from Hopkins which takes you through a subterranean river. Swim into the mouth of the cave, wade through ankle- to chest-high water before climbing through intricate passageways of dry chambers to reach a cathedral-like main hall filled with artifacts and sacrificial remains. This is the most impressive of all the tours in Hopkins.

Fishing Tour – this half day tour takes you to many fishing spots along the Belize’s southern barrier reef.

Monkey River Tour (with transportation from Hopkins) – cruise down the Monkey River. A scenic yet little-known waterway that’s home to howler monkeys, manatees, crocodiles, and even giant iguanas. Get a glimpse into local fishing traditions and enjoy an authentic Belizean meal.

Ella’s Cool Spot Restaurant 

This was highly recommended to us by our taxi driver. It looks awesome and full of that chill Hopkins vibe.

The school, church and lending library 

In a tiny town the heart often lies between the church and the school. This was a cute area. The church is on the beach and the school is across the road. In front was the little library what was so cute.

Check out the colourful shacks and shops

The rustic houses along the street painted bright colours are really pretty.

Mini markets

We stopped into Fi We Mart market to get some essentials.

Where to eat in Hopkins:

Our number one recommendation is The Paddle House at The Lodge at Jaguar Reef. The restaurant is so pretty set right on the sand with views to the water. The aesthetic is so pretty and the food is divine! Everything we tasted was perfect! We ate all our meals here and loved every single one of them. Being coeliac was no problem, there was plenty to choose from!

Where to next?

Ragga Sailing Adventures – must do in Belize!

Caye Caulker must visit destination in 2025

The Lodge at Jaguar Reef – the best place to stay in Belize

The best itinerary for Belize!

Crossing the Mexico – Belize land border in 2024

Gluten free Belize

Why you have to visit Xunantunich Mayan Ruins from San Ignacio

What to do in the jungle town of San Ignacio, Belize

You may also like

Leave a Comment