Tiny Belize is an English-speaking enclave about the size of Massachusetts, and the country has done an outstanding job of protecting its environmental and historical riches. More than half of its primary forest remains intact, and at least a quarter of the country’s land and sea is set aside as national parks and nature reserves. Belize’s most striking natural feature is its barrier reef, extending for 185 miles and studded with around 200 sandy islets, or cays. Home to magnificent Maya ruins, the interior is covered by dense jungle inhabited by an astonishing wealth of flora and fauna.

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