Michela and Francesco are beyond amazing! Yes I’m even talking about them before the incredible trip. From the minute we stepped foot on the dock we were in their hands. Greeted with warmth and a sense of family. The trip could have been great, but instead it was amazing! Michela and Francesco seamlessly had everything we could wish for planned from day trips snorkeling on the protected reefs, swimming with sharks, stingrays, turtles, sea horses and more to an unexpected need for a therapeutic massage for a sore back (bad horseback ride before the trip). They literally had Belize resources on speed dial and knew everyone we encountered. Our family also asked them to handle our wedding vow renewal for our 20th wedding anniversary. At sunset off the back of the catamaran, it was everything we could ask for. Oh, and I’d be mistaken not too mention that Michela can cook!! More like a chef ☺ I’m gluten free and my daughter is allergic to nuts. She handled that with ease making tasty treats to decadent meals. You will not only enjoy your trip, but you will miss them both when you leave.
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Just returned from a week long trip on Doris, a 50ft catamaran with 2 of the best crew I've ever met: Captain Jesse and first mate/chef/caretaker Kainie. All you need to know is you need to book a trip like this!!
Captain Jesse is a expert sailer and a true professional. We sailed every breeze and chartered to the most beautiful islands. We also kayaked, paddled, snorkeled and scuba dove to our heart's content.
First Mate & Caretaker Kainie treated us like royalty. She cooked amazing, healthy meals you couldn't resist, made special birthday deserts for the 2 birthdays onboard, and catered to our every need. Nothing was ever out of place or too much to ask of her.
Doris is a very luxurious catamaran as well, a wonderful place to spend 8 days - comfortable private quarters, 3 ample gathering areas, nice finishes and furnishings and most of all, air conditioning at night when u need to cool down and sleep!!
I will remember most the respectful and friendly ways Jesse and Kainie treated our group, as well as the amazing sailing, meals, and islands And we visited each day. This was a trip of a lifetime, I hope you get a chance to do it too!
My motivation for writing this review is to give credit to our delightful captain and cook, who were both amazing. We love to sail, and that is exactly what we did, with winds at 25 knots a good deal of the way, routinely moving at 8 knots, and sails up at least 8 hours a day. Our captain Daniel had those sails up by 0700, and as soon as he had taken us out on an adventure snookering over lunch, the sails were back up for the afternoon, until the sun was threatening to set. He taught us how to sail the boat and my husband or myself were at the helm most of the way. He communicated openly and directly with us, and listened to what we had to say. He is also a tour guide and was able to guide us through the marine reserve and have us hold sharks and rays at the shark ray alley! Ellen, our cook, was the perfect compliment to Daniel, and they worked very effectively together. Ellen is a gourmet cook. I have never tasted better food, and that is not just because we were at sea. This food was out of this world delicious, and she seemed to create it effortlessly. She also kept the cabin in great shape. She was great to visit with, and had a warm genuine, authentic demeanour. Mandy, who helped us get organized for this trip was excellent, and responsive in every way. The only reason this trip did not get a 5 is that the boat needed a deep clean (bed frame, under the boat cushions) , a few cupboards didn't latch well, and the bathroom did not smell very good. I realize that is an odd complaints, as you wouldn't expect it to, but this was more than you might expect. I would highly recommend this trip for anyone who loves sailing and adventure.
We (2 adults, 1 teen) spent 5 days aboard the Aubisque and had one of our best vacations ever. It was our first trip to Belize, and our first sailing charter. We will absolutely do both again, and we'll do it with Belize Sailing Vacations.
Pre-trip was incredibly easy. Cliff, Rachael and Mandy patiently answered all of our questions and helped us through the process as rookies. They also recommended places for us to stay and things to do prior to boarding the Aubisque. We felt very comfortable that they were working to assure the best vacation possible. The pre-trip check list was great, and on the trip we could tell how important it was to the planning that went into our trip. Our food and activity preferences were matched to at T.
Our captain and crew / cook, Ellis and Christie, made the trip for us. I think if we spent 5 days in a row boat with them, it still would've been a fantastic trip. Both smiled and laughed with us the entire trip, sharing stories of their homes and their favorite locations. Ellis plotted a course to places that perfectly matched our activity preferences. He knew how the weather would respond and took us to places that we were just amazed by. He pointed out things that we would've never seen and even gave us a bit of a lesson in sailing. Christie was a perfect compliment. Before we even thought about what we may want, it was there. Towels, snacks and maybe a beverage or two. She prepared 15 incredible meals, each one fresh and flavorful. We were lucky to leave with a new recipe or two. Now we'll have to see if we can actually replicate them. She knew our preferences and tailored them perfectly - I'm allergic to shellfish and my teen isn't a big fish fan - so each meal was made with us in mind. As I said, we will absolutely sail again with BSV and we'll be requesting Ellis and Christie to be our captain and crew again. It really wouldn't be the same without them.
We did more in 5 days that we would've imagined possible. Five different snorkeling spots, two kayak trips, hung out with the manatees, visited Caye Caulker and San Pedro, all wrapped around fishing and sailing the bluest water imaginable. While snorkeling we saw the most amazing coral - much more alive and vibrant that we saw in the USVI's and BVI's, tropical fish, spotted eagle rays, turtles and many other sea creatures. The kayak trips let us see things slowly and up close - star fish, cow fish and even the tiny sea horses in the mangroves. On our last night, we finally caught fish, including a Cero Mackerel which became the appetizer and main course that night.
If it is your first trip to Belize from the US, as it was for us, traveling there was easier that we thought it would. Most people speak english. There isn't really a need for currency exchange. 2 Belize dollars = 1 US dollar. So if entry to Mayan Ruins are 10 Belize $, you can hand the park ranger $5 US and be all set. Getting around is easy and people are hospitable, friendly and very proud of their great country.
In summary, we'd do it again as soon as we are able, and wouldn't look at any other operators to compare to Belize Sailing Vacations. I can't imagine anyone does it better.
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My husband and I signed on to this trip because we were happy to spend 5 days with the two other couples who had already committed to go. They're 4 of our favorite people, so of course, we'll go-guaranteed good time! But, I didn't anticipate how amazing the experience would be. Both Michela and Francesco provided an incredible vacation. I felt completely at home from the first. Not like a customer but like a guest. As I described to friends upon our return, Miki took care of us like we were guests in her home rather than chartered clients. And she cooked like she should be doing that for a living! I had assumed that meals would be pretty basic on a catamaran...oh no, every meal was eagerly anticipated! I took home recipes and tips. I really can't say enough. I knew it would be hard to leave the 2 other couples who had chartered the boat with us, but I had no idea it would be hard to leave our hosts, Miki and
Francesco. Thanks so much for an unforgettable 5 days!