Our floating pub crawl continues, this time on the beautiful island of Ambergris Caye in Belize. First stop, rum cocktail sampling at Rojo Lounge. Here we go!
Our first-ever floating pub crawl last October was so much fun that we decided to do it again, this time in Belize. Much like our research trip in the US and British Virgin Islands, our transport would be by boat and we would spend our days hunting down some of the best beach bars they have to offer.
For the adventure traveler, Belize has it all. It is a beautiful country with mountainous regions, islands, Mayan ruins, coral reefs, crystal clear waters and of course, great bars and rum. Our expedition was focused around Ambergris Caye, a tiny island about 10 miles from the mainland coast. This is a popular beach destination and its main town of San Pedro is as lively as any tourist spot in the Caribbean with bars, restaurants and resorts. Some of the most popular watering holes are right in town, but we decided to start our crawl several miles up the coast at a place we’d heard so much about, a beautifully laid back restaurant and bar called Rojo Lounge.
Rojo Lounge hit the scene in Belize a few years ago with a menu full of great food, beautiful atmosphere, talented bartenders and the best liquor selection on the island. It sits just feet from the Caribbean Sea on a quiet stretch of beach about 6 miles north of San Pedro. The roads deteriorate soon after leaving town, so the only real option is getting there by bicycle or boat. Don’t worry, they’ll be ready for you.
From the water, you’re welcomed to the property by a long wooden boat dock that stretches out fifty yards into the sea. Once your feet hit the sand you’ll be greeted by a team of lazy dogs in various sizes and colors. They are all friendly and part of the laid back vibe at this cool place.
Rojo Lounge is part restaurant, bar and weekend market. A massive thatch roof structure covers the main dining area and then cascades down to a sandy beach. The bar sits under a smaller palapa roof just feet from the water’s edge. The blue-green hues of the ocean constantly sparkle in the afternoon sun as gentle waves lap at the sandy shore. Damn, this is a beautiful spot!
We arrive and belly-up to the bar for a cocktail, reggae music gently streams from the sound system and a constant warm breeze blows in from the sea. We order a couple of local rums and settle in for a session. We talk with the bartender about cocktails and rum and he eventually brings out a couple of unique infusions for us to sample. The cocktails, though not complicated, are wonderful. Rum punches, mojitos and daiquiris are our drinks of choice and go down perfectly in the afternoon sun. They also have a nice selection of Belizean rums, and several others from all over Central America and the Caribbean.
The afternoon is calm and laid back at Rojo Lounge and we lazily sit barefoot, sip our drinks and watch the waves crash on the coral reef which is just a few hundreds yards offshore. Dolphins are common in these waters and as we hope and watch for them to surface close by, a boat carrying a group of snorkelers pulls in to the Rojo dock and the bar soon begins to bustle.
The breeze usually blows steadily down here and acts as natural climate control, but if you get hot there’s a small infinity pool just steps away to cool off in. And with all this relaxation (and rum) you may get a little sleepy. No worries, take a nap in one of several hammocks that gently sway in shady settings throughout the property. The wait staff will be sure to keep your drink full in whatever lazy spot you choose. Life is good!
Rojo Lounge is a perfect little beach bar. The atmosphere, staff and cocktails make it the ideal place to stop for a quick drink or settle in for a long hangout session with your friends. If you ever find yourself in San Pedro, Belize, head 6 miles up the beach from town and say hello. An afternoon of rum and relaxation will keep you coming back again and again…..it certainly worked for us.