Originally Posted by h2oskifreak
We looked at Hamansi but were told the town Hopkins next door is pretty awful. I had a friend who owned a home there for a few years and steered us away from the area. She said "Resort great, but isolated".
Yes, its isolated... and I can see why your friend would not have liked it, but I actually quite liked Hopkins. I guess its one of those 'ymmv' things, and maybe my standards are different. But it's OK to walk barefoot everywhere, and all the locals say hi when you walk by them. That's pretty good in my book and just set me in the right mood to really enjoy myself. We were there at New Years, and the whole town including tourists went to the same party. I travel a lot (hence my teamtalk name), and I have not seen this anywhere else. There are lots of restaurants ranging from $20US per person down to $3pp. My favourite was Fran's Kitchen, where literally you walk into a grass hut that has three tables and a kitchen - best burritos ever! However if you want western standards and western service, then you'll certainly be disappointed when you leave the resort. The one thing our kids still talk about is the phosphoresence we saw on a night time boat trip in a brackish slough near the mouth of the Settee river. It was spectacular - it would light up the fish as they swam away from the boat. The boat wake was two solid bars of green lights following the boat. We followed a manatee for a while - it was lit up like it was a 10' firefly. I've never seen anything like that before.
Having said all that, while I really liked Hopkins & Belize in general, its not a place I need to return to any time soon. There's so many other places to go!