San Pedro, Belize is a tourist mecca and there are tons of restaurants that are willing to take tourists dollars and serve food that can be found at home. Here are 3 great places to eat in San Pedro that were either recommended to me by locals or I found by accident.
Now THIS is a place I can really get behind. This hole in the wall place was a place I accidentally stumbled upon while trying to find a different restaurant that turned out to be closed.
I really didn’t see any signs for it but it’s about a 10 min walk from Mahogany. If you’re walking or driving off the main street, you’ll see a hand painted sign that says pharmacy or a more professional sign advertising the Hidden Treasure restaurant which is located right across the street from this place.
They have daily specials but they also have their own specials ranging from quesadillas to pupusas to lobster (when in season). The first time I went, I ordered the blackened chicken quesadilla and it was DELICIOUS. It wasn’t just cheese and chicken either as it was stuffed with peppers and onions and came with a side of (I think sour cream or a lighter version of sour cream) and fresh salsa.
Here’s the thing about this place. It’s a locals eatery. I did see a couple tourists there but mostly, it’s local families sitting and eating and the prices reflect that.
The chicken quesadilla and a large coke were $20 BZD, including tip ($10 USD) and the portions were huge. They use this mild cheese that has a major stringiness factor and the blackened chicken flavor really came through. I liked it so much I went back the following night to have it as my last meal in Belize.
This is an outdoor seating restaurant and if you’re going at night, you’ll hear the music playing. Walk toward the music and you’ll be greeted with a woman cooking pupusas on the flat top. It’s just a very low key but delicious place to eat and relax. I can’t recommend this place enough.
If you’re in the mood for seafood and it isn’t lobster season yet, Caramba’s might be your best bet. It’s on the main drag and you’ll be able to pick your fish, crab, etc from the selection outside if you like.
Off the staff’s recommendation, I went with the stone crab which came with coconut rice and salad. It was delicious but I’m not sure if it makes it unique enough to warrant a $40 USD price tag. Yes it’s good but is it budget friendly? Not so much. I always recommend getting seafood from a seafood restaurant (vs. a taco stand for example) so I felt confident I wouldn’t get sick afterwards.
Obviously there are cheaper items on the menu that you can get. But I would strongly advise you to leave your idea of a bargain at the door. San Pedro is definitely NOT a cheap place to visit and the overall prices might shock you. I couldn’t help but overhear the couple eating at the table behind me who were shocked at the prices.
Just about a block away from Caramba is another recommended restaurant called Elvi’s. It has a low key feel to it with sand on the floor and even a tree growing inside the main dining hall.
Elvi’s has Belizean/Mexican food with their own spin. I got the jack fry tacos with blackened chicken. The taco shells were fried so they were crispy and came 2 to an order. The meal was fine and since I was getting a very late lunch (around 3pm), there was no one else there.
There was certainly a welcoming vibe to this restaurant. Although the food served looked like it was trying to be a more modern/upscale eatery, the food tasted home cooked with pride. I don’t know why but I really enjoyed this place even though it was in the main tourist area.
If you’re on San Pedro, I’d recommend checking these 3 places out. La Divinia is a little tough to find but COMPLETELY worth the trip. Also, if have access to a golf cart, it won’t take more than 15 minutes to get there from anywhere on the island. Elvi’s and Caramba were both recommended to me by locals so I certainly can’t argue with that. However, since they’re on the main tourist street, they charge tourist prices and your wallet will take a hit.