by Katrina Whitehead in Cool Travel on Thursday 12 March 2009

While the Belizean Islands are some of the most beautiful and tranquil in the world, Belize City is one of those uninspiring places that most people travel in and out of very quickly. However, if you do find yourself stranded there, as I did, the city does have one redeeming attraction. Approximately twenty kilometres west of the centre, you’ll find the Belize Zoo — which the founders call the ‘best little zoo in the world’. It relies on charitable donations and has gained huge respect for housing native Belizean wildlife, such as jaguars, howler monkeys, tapirs, ocelots and toucans, in natural, tropical surroundings. If you’re there on the first Friday in April, you can even join hundreds of visitors in celebrating the birthday of the zoo’s resident tapir, April. The zoo has an awesome rasta-vibe, and the hand-written information posts are guaranteed to make you giggle.