What is the easiest way to get from Belize to Chetumal? If you are in Belize on Caye Caulker or Caye Ambergris and want to enter Mexico, you have several options. The fastest way is to take a boat from Caye Caulker or Ambergris Caye directly to Chetumal and cross the border from Belize to Mexico. We will tell you exactly how to do that in this travel report.
We are Sabrina and Andreas, two adventurous travelers who never miss an opportunity to discover the world. Whether by plane to distant countries or with our campervan Bruno, we just love to travel. We hope to give you helpful tips for your next trip on our blog.
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By Boat from Belize to Chetumal Mexico
We crossed several borders during our backpacking trip through the Yucatan Peninsula, but never before by boat. So this was also a new experience for us. Crossing the border from Belize to Chetumal Mexico by boat is really easy though.
You only have to be on Caye Caulker or Ambergris Caye. From here, the Belize Watertaxi runs every 2 days at 08:30 nonstop to Chetumal. It is best to ask at the ticket office on both islands for the exact schedule. Otherwise you can look it up online on their website.
Belize to Chetumal: How to Cross the Border by Boat?
At the ticket office of Belize Watertaxi you have to buy your tickets at least one day before departure. You have to bring your passport, because your data will be noted directly by the ticket seller.
Checkin at the Terminal
You should be at the departure terminal in Caye Caulker or Ambergris Caye at least one hour before departure. If you are departing from Caye Caulker, you will be taken by boat to Ambergris Caye and have to walk to the international terminal on the other side of the island. There you have to check in at the ticket counter, drop off your large luggage and get a green boat ticket.
Departure from Belize
In the terminal there are 2 counters where you show your passports and pay the exit fee from Belize (40 Bz$). This fee can only be paid in cash! At the second counter you have to show all documents and get the stamp in your passport. After that you leave the building and go to the waiting area for the boat. There you can exchange Belize Dollars into Mexican Pesos at an employee (unofficial). You should do this, because in Chetumal you need pesos to pay the entry fee.
The Boat Trip
The trip from Ambergris Caye to Chetumal takes about two hours and is relatively quiet, since the boat does not cross the open sea.
Entry in Chetumal
Once you arrive in Chetumal, your hand luggage will be checked by drug dogs, then you will go to the terminal. There you have to fill out the entry form and pay the entry fee of 558 Mexican pesos in cash at the counter. If you don’t have any pesos with you, there is also an ATM or an exchange office.
From the Ferry Terminal to Bacalar
Once you have successfully passed the immigration, you have 3 options to continue to Bacalar (or Cancun, Tulum etc.).
Option 1: By Minibus
Directly at the exit of the terminal you will be offered minibuses, which will take you to Bacalar for e.g. 150 MXN. But if you are, like us, the last ones to leave the terminal, it can happen that the bus has already left. Then you still have 2 options.
Possibility 2: By Private Cab
The friendly staff on site will gladly sell you a private cab to Bacalar for 300 MXN per person. Since this is of course very expensive, we didn’t go for it and went outside the terminal to find a cheaper option. For this you have to walk several hundred meters to the main street.
There, cab drivers approached us directly and we were able to get to Bacalar to our hotel for only 250 MXN. This was not the cheapest but the fastest alternative and so we went for it.
Option 3: By ADO Bus
If you want or need to save money, you can also take a cab to the ADO bus terminal and take a bus from there to Bacalar. This will cost you about 80 MXN per person. If you add the cab ride to the bus terminal for 2 people, you will only get away a little cheaper, but definitely much slower.
How much does it cost to leave Belize?
When leaving Belize to Chetumal, whether you leave by boat, plane or car, you will have to pay Bz$40 (USD$20) per person. This fee cannot be avoided unless you are in Belize for less than 24 hours.
How much does it cost to enter Mexico?
When entering Mexico you have to pay 558 MXN (Mexican Pesos) in cash. At the entry terminal in Chetumal there is an ATM where you can withdraw pesos.