There is a casual rhythm to daily life in Placencia.
My end of the village starts moving around at around 5:30. It starts off with the trip to the ATM. There’s always music – loud and lots of bass – music of all genres. Unlike other places I have lived in, I have yet to hear bad music here.
Motor bikes, golf carts, tractors, cars, bicycles and scooters all converge there before continuing on with their day. The bank parking lot also acts as a meeting place for bank customers and you can hear them talking and laughing throughout the day before going about their business.
Birds wake up with the sun and their chirps and song in the trees and bushes is constant. Before I go to have my coffee on the patio, I slather coconut oil on my legs, arms and neck to avoid being eaten alive by the sand flies, or no seeums, as we refer to them. These little buggers are relentless and the oil ensures I enjoy my coffee in peace.
It’s beautiful here first thing in the morning, the sky pink with the rising sun, dogs barking in the neighbourhood, the sound of a rooster waking up the village.
Our cat, Lucy, sits on the wall and watches the people come and go.
At about 7 am, I hear Roman, the Juice Man, shouting “juice, juice guy” from his tricycle on the road behind me. He sells fresh juice all day long. Soon after that, the breakfast burrito lady followed by the donut lady. You have to be quick if you want their homemade goodies as they are snapped up by nearby construction workers and early risers alike.
The beach is empty at 7:30 when I take Abby for her walk, except for a lone runner. He waves at me as he runs by and I wave back. We go home via the Sidewalk and come across a friend having his coffee on the balcony of his beach house. We chat for a few minutes.
As I near my house, I can smell freshly baked muffins and other baked goods coming from the bakery, Angel Delights, across the road. I go in and order a blueberry muffin. One my neighbours is there waiting for his breakfast sandwich and coffee and we chat for a while. The bakery opens at 7 and you can go in and order a breakfast sandwich and/or a muffin and coffee and enjoy it on their shady patio, or take it home with you to enjoy there. I take mine home.
If smoothies are more your thing, you can stop in at The Main Squeeze across the road.
On the way home a car stops and I see it’s one of the artists who has a shop on the sidewalk. I chat to him whenever I pass by his store. He sometimes pops into the pub down the road from me. He stops in the middle of the road to chat to me creating a traffic jam. Nobody seems to mind. They wait until we finish our conversation and then everybody continues on.
Along main street, people start making their way to work.
The area surrounding the bus stop is a hustle and bustle of activity as people arrive by bus from the surrounding areas and make their way to their various jobs. They arrive early to take advantage of the many street vendors selling breakfast and fresh juice.
The bar stools and chairs at the various fast food stands are full of workers enjoying a quick breakfast before work.
At around 9 am, the holiday and expat breakfast crowd start to gather at various restaurants – De Tatch, Wendy’s, Strange Brew, Cosy Corner, The Shak, to name a few. Fry Jacks are a MUST with or without your eggs and bacon. Dip them jam. Or try stuffed fry jacks for a complete meal. Breakfast burritos are filling and flavourful too. It’s not uncommon to have a beer or mimosa with your breakfast – especially if you’re on holiday. No judgment here. In fact, it’s perfectly normal.
Around mid-morning, expats and digital nomads crowd into the local coffee shops – Above Grounds, Brewed Awakenings, and Chill Point. Sitting on their deck in the dappled sunlight watching the world go by is a very pleasant way to spend a morning.
Along the main street, you can stop in at one of the fruit and vegetables stands and pick up fresh mouthwatering pineapple, watermelon, mangoes and a good selection of vegetables
It’s very popular and always busy. It’s also another opportunity for people to stop and chat before going on with their day.
Don’t forget to nip across the road to Tutti Fruitti’s for delicious gelato.
Come lunchtime, down by the Pointe you can watch the fishing boats come and go, buy some fresh fish to take home, or stay and enjoy a barbecue lunch. Take a stroll down the famous Sidewalk and take advantage of the many bars, restaurants and coffee shops along the way. You can do some shopping as well at the many stores there selling everything from souvenirs to clothes to artwork and beautiful wood carvings.
Many of the restaurants open onto the beach and you can either eat your meal at the tables indoors, or take advantage of the picnic tables and loungers on the beach.
You’ll often see the locals fishing in their spare time – snapper, grouper, barracuda, tarpon, and amberjack. In the deep waters past the reef, you can reel in sailfish, marlin, mahi-mahi, tuna, kingfish, dorado, mackerel, wahoo, amberjack, snook, and pompano.
After lunch, you can take a refreshing nap, or stay and spend the afternoon drinking pineapple margaritas, mojitos or whatever cocktail takes your fancy.
Evenings is when Placencia really comes alive. It’s much cooler and the village takes on a magical hue with people strolling down the streets doing some shopping, or enjoying drinks or dinner at one of the many restaurants
There’s something for everyone, from Italian to fish and shellfish, pizza or traditional Belizean dining and everything in between. Live music and dancing, or a quiet dinner on the beach.