When an adventurous couple decide to have a destination wedding in Belize, it is tempting to assume that it will be a barefoot beach wedding. Belize is well known for it’s beautiful Caribbean sea and sandy, palm dotted islands, but for a few, something else calls them from Belize. Among the waterfalls, the tropical rain forest and jungle setting it is easy to remember that Belize is an ancient land, once inhabited by one of the most advanced civilisations in the world. Belize was the home of the Maya people. It is the lure of the mysteries of this ancient civilisation that brings some to create memories of a lifetime in Belize. This is one of those couples.
Like every good wedding story, this one starts with a beautiful bride, contemplating her future. Miles away from anything she knows as modern civilisation, deep in the forest of the Mountain Pine Ridge of Belize.
This wedding is experiencing a different sort of civilisation and sharing in practices and rites that have been passed down for generations. Copal, an incense used since ancient times, is being burned in the background by a local shaman for ritual and purification purposes. After prayers were offered, a traditional joining by a string of beads was made and a Belizean officiant legalised the marriage.
Some children from a local village were delighted to help create a colourful aisle for the bride and groom to break through.
Some of the children were particularly adorable.
After the spiritual and moving Maya ceremony, the couple explored the grounds and enjoyed their first moments together as newlyweds.
Finding some scenic and…
…very romantic locations along the way.
It was a beautifully intense and wonderful day – only a second to get a little bit of rest before the celebrations continued.
The entertainment was just getting warmed up with a group of incredible marimba players.
As the evening and the celebrations continued, traditional Maya dances were performed. Certainly this was a Maya experience for the couple to remember and treasure forever, but the lure of the mysterious Maya persisted for them and so their adventure continued the following day.
It was now time for the couple to step out of the deep, dark rain forest and out into the Belizean sun…
…and encounter the ruins of the ancient Maya people. These are the ruins of Xunantunich. Over 2000 years ago, Xunantunich was a great city with over 200,000 residents.
Now they stand as a testament to the great, ancient Maya civilsation and have been preserved and restored remarkably allowing those with an adventurous and curious spirit to discover and learn about this fascinating part of human history.
Aside from the incredible story of these ancient temples, the scenery is amazing. So, if you’d kindly indulge us, we’d like to just enjoy that for a few photos.
This is the view towards the main temple, El Castillo, looking North.
This is the absolutely stunning view of Belize from El Castillo.
This is El Castillo, where the legend says, a maiden dressed in white would appear. This is where the name Xunantunich, which means ‘stone maiden’, originates.
It was that legend, which also inspired this image.
The ruins are vast and there is so much to explore and learn about the Maya people, their history, traditions and modern way of life. If you’re adventurous and you want to step into your future by taking a step into the ancient past, we suggest you consider following the lure of the mysterious Maya … all the way to Belize.
This gorgeous wedding was planned and hosted at Blancaneaux Lodge in the Pine Ridge of Belize