When we first got to this little island I was disheartened, we had tried a few places with not much success. The food was downright crappy. The supermarkets were expensive, the fruit and veg not fresh and it seemed there was nowhere to eat. Especially for a family who don't eat seafood.
Then we read SanPedroScoop and got in touch with Rebecca for some advice. And the very first night, on her advice, we ate at DJ’s & met Joe, a Belize expat who had a great deal of knowledge on where to eat. And with his list in hand we finally started to find a few treasures on the island.
But first a few tips:
- If you are driving around looking for food it may very well elude you. Jump out of the golf cart, walk down to the beach and all of a sudden you will see the restaurants… lots of them.
- Don’t be put off by the word “bar”. We, at first, hardly ate anywhere cause everything was a “bar” and with kids we did not think that would be appropriate, but most of the places are super kid-friendly and have yummy food, not just alcohol.
- The food takes awhile everywhere. Most food is made fresh on the spot so add in your wait time and get there early, not when you’re starving.
You only need this one list for your enjoyable San Pedro, Belize getaway. That’s right I compiled a delicious and tantalizing list for your drooling, wishing and hopefully tasting pleasure. Enjoy!
Located on the beach. Park the golf cart on Front Street at the very southern end near the chocolate store and walk to the beach. Beautiful location overlooking the aqua sea.
We tried several times to eat here before we finally managed. It’s always packed and there is good reason, it’s delicious. Amy’s Salad, Taco Salad, Tacos (crispy like I like them), pork chops, the guacamole - all of it excellent. Smoothies are delicious and can be doubled for $3.25.
This had to be one of our absolute favourites. Whenever I needed a salad there was no where else to go. Yummy.
Best burgers on the island. Drew, a new expat in Belize, found DJ out the back with a little shack and they went into businesses together. Drew is the face and a great host, while DJ is out the back popping out yummy burgers and sweet potato fries.
Watch this space because Drew is not your average looking burger eater. There is a cross fit gym on the way for you to work off that deliciousness. Try the Cheesy Cheese with a fried mozzarella block on the burger. Other favourites were the sweet and spicy chicken wings and the stuffed jalapenos – not hot like I thought, but super delicious.
DJ’s is at the northern end of the beach about 40 meters south of the bridge. There is a playground and basketball court in front of it. Say hi to Drew for us.
Located on Middle Street is Elvi's Kitchen. Not to be outdone by it’s beach counterparts, the floor is covered in sand and the service extravagant. Good burgers, great salad, the coconut shrimp is delicious and so was the pork chop. The key lime pie was frozen and worth skipping, but the coconut pie takes it to a whole new level, yum.
This little place is only open on certain nights and only cooks one main dish really. Jerk Chicken. When we arrived we had no idea what to expect, it was a little shack on the side of the road with a gospel singer and a few tables. No one helped us. On enquiry all we were told is he is starting the chicken.
It was a long wait, but once all the tables were filled, which was fast, the cook came out and barbequed some chicken. After he was done it was a fairly quick serve. We didn’t order, it just came out. Chicken, rice and beans and coleslaw. It was delicious. 8 plates $40 that’s like $5 for a super tasty meal. It felt more like a family meal that you’d have at home than a restaurant, which was a nice change.
Drinks can be purchased next door at the minimart.
Tucked away 7-10 mins south in the suburbs is a unique restaurant. Pricey, but high-end gourmet. For a special occasion highly recommend, it had class.
A US$10 water taxi ride will get you to the Rojo Lounge north of the island, about 5 miles from the centre of town. This place is not just a restaurant, it’s a day out. Located on the beach they have lounges, hammocks, a pool, bar & restaurant. We spent about 5 hours there with the kids playing and eating.
They had the best pizza on the island, the best I have had in a long time. The staff were real friendly and you can just tell from the picture it’s where you want to spend a day. If you miss the 3:30pm boat back, make sure you get the staff to call the water taxi to stop for the 5:30pm speedboat back to San Pedro.
This little place is an oddity in more ways then one. It’s only opened on Thursday to Sunday between 11 am and 3pm. It sits on a lake with crocodiles and there are funny signs everywhere for a great laugh. You order at the front of the little wood shack and head round back if you want to eat on the decking above the croc lake.
We got a Super Sampler for US$25 and it was more then enough for our family of 4. Chicken, ribs and pulled pork, moist & succulent. Divine garlic bread, and your choice of 4 sides like coleslaw, beans, mash, macaroni & cheese. It’s a favourite of the US Southern expats and we had to agree it was hearty and delicious.
2 minutes north of the bridge, accessible by golf cart, similar to Rojo, is the Kama Lounge. The food was okay, but the lounges, view and pool were a hit with the kids.
Also 6-8 minutes north of the bridge, accessible by golf cart, this bar sits on a pier over the water. Bobbing in the water are tubes where you can relax while the staff serve your drinks to you in the water. They serve a great burger and it’s loads of fun. Sign your name somewhere if you can find space.
Mario runs this joint and is very friendly. You’ll often find him loitering out the front talking with customers. They had the best milkshake we had on the island, great ice cream and a delicious cheap breakfast. Perfect for the morning before our boat ride to Belize City. Josh rates the French toast as some of the best he’s had and believe me, he is a French toast connoisseur.
Estel’s on the Beach
What an amazing location. Again walk along the beach and you will find this little gem. With a beautiful breakfast and the best view ever, the waves literally lap at your feet. An ideal location for a Saturday morning breakfast of French toast or pancakes.
Newly opened, this café is all about the grilled cheese sandwich, and they do it well. The Chicken Itza was good, so was the Quattro and the plain All American Cheese. All sandwiches come with pickles and corn chips.
The Canadian owner was a real sweetheart and there’s free Wi-Fi, hammocks, beanbags and a beautiful view of the beach.
Head south, opposite Road Kill Bar, about 1 min drive south of Ramon’s.
We have eaten here twice. One was lunch, which was yummy and once for dinner. We had the pineapple boat, which was fried rice in a pineapple half. Now having made these in Thailand and eaten them often I would rate those just okay, but at $45 for 2 – that’s not OK!
Otherwise this is a perfect spot with pool, beach and even snorkeling off the pier. They also have “hot stone” dishes where your meat cooks on your table in front of your eyes. Kids have so much to do here while you eat or sip your cocktail.
Head 1-2 mins south from the airport.
We visited this joint for drinks one afternoon and some snacks. Its along the beach near Estels, Licks and all the others. Great location, beautiful rainbow colours and some of the most delicious snacks I've ever had. Notably the bang bang chicken, the fried pickles and the Luna Loca blue drink is awesome with a red gummy fish lolly swimming in it's depths.
The chef came out to thank us for licking the plates clean, then the Owner come out with free shots. We loved this place and the company.
AJ’s – great nachos, live music. $1 wings on Wednesdays. South of the centre of town, past Ramon’s.
Road Kill Bar – good fries, $3 panty rippers, the pineapple & rum cocktail are delicious. Located opposite Melt Café.
Annie’s – the pink pastry shop on Middle street, delicious, great rolls, donuts, coconut pies and more.
Rico’s – expensive, but nice location. Food was excellent.
Chinese – not worth eating. Beef & cucumber is not my idea of Chinese and was well below par. They call Chinese food “fast food” here. It’s not fast and it’s not good.
My Secret Deli – Turn east from First Street at Belize Bank and its located on that road just after Middle Street. You’ll find pretty good food at really reasonable prices.
Dixie’s – Fresh fruit shakes and smoothies for less than $2.50 a glass. My son had a strawberry Nesquick and would not share, so that says something.
Fruit Store – Right next to Dixie’s is a cute little fruit stall with freshly cut up fruit and the most delicious flour chips. They also do super cheap food and it’s often busy.
DandE – a Frozen Custard store. I wasn’t a fan of their take on ice-cream and it was expensive. My advice would be to visit Madeley ice-cream on First Street instead, much better.
Georges Kitchen – Great breakfast, and friendly service. Josh enjoyed their omelets and it takes a bit to impress him when it comes to omelets.
Caroline’s Kitchen – Fantastic service by Caroline herself and the breakfast was to die for. Wish we had found this before our last day.
And there you have it. We tried some places, not mentioned above cause Mamma said "if you can’t say anything nice don’t say anything at all". Next time you are in San Pedro, head to one of these joints and tell 'em Travel With Bender sent ya! Bon appetite!
For pictures of all the food and restaurants head to our Photo Journal and be prepare to drool!
Reader Comments..."I respond to every comment by direct private email. I look forward to your feedback" - Josh Bender
Gosh that made me SO hungry!!!!!
Howdy Erin! Great meeting you, Josh, and the kids on your trip! Great entry, and I couldn't have said it better myself. Hope to see you again soon! Cheers, Joe.
Oh yum yum yum. That looks awsome. And the whole place looks beautiful too. Must get to Central America soon!!!
Thanks for the shout out! I am still stunned by the amount of restaurants you hit. Wowzer. And we never got to meet in person. See you next time. - Sanpedroscoop.com
I don't comment as often as I'd like to, only because I tend to read on my phone and commenting from there takes too long. Yet this morning, I'm reading with coffee in hand in front of the laptop. Just wanted to say that I am completely head over heels for your writing and this site. So happy we 'met' on twitter!!
FYI - I'm also green with jealousy, do you know how cold it is here in Canada right now?! Boo!!
Thanks for taking me on your daily adventures, a little chance for me to dream and escape!!
So bummed we missed Kama Lounge and Palapa Bar on our last trip. Wild Mango was for sure our favorite! LOVED it! Another great one (IMO) is Waraguma...yum!
Really great blog keep it up.
THANK YOU!!!! Planning a wedding in this location. So nice to know where everyone will enjoy eating before we go. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! :D
Just came back from San Pedro, loved the island. The best bar we went to was the Crazy Cannuck, best food was Carolines. Food at the melt was great but the male owner seemed to have a very poor attitude towards tourists and his staff, he also coughed all over the place as he sat in the corner smoking cigarette after cigarette.
Thanks for the tips! Are you able to swim and eat at Ramon's Village without being a guest?
We loved the dive bar. Best quesadilla ever!!
I'm heading here Feb. 2019, it's gonna be an eating fest among all other things so this stuff we will keep in mind!
Hi, Thanks for all the great tips! We are coming Sept 13-26. We would love to meet some people while we are there!
Going back Dec.2019.(second trip). We love everyplace on the list, plus some. My suggestion is to get a golf cart and head south for the day and then head north a different day and hit as many places as you can. Soooo much fun just cruisin, eatin and drinkin. The food, views, people and atmosphere are second to none. I love Belize!!
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