Belize’s tourism sector experienced substantial growth in 2023, showing a resilient recovery after facing unprecedented challenges
Recently released preliminary tourism-related arrival figures reveal a notable increase in both overnight stays and cruise ship visits, underscoring the attractiveness of the destination and the sector’s strong recovery.
In 2023, Belize experienced impressive tourism growth, with the number of hosted tourists increasing by 25% compared to the previous year, reaching a total of 464,717 visitors. Although we are still 7.6% below 2019 pre-pandemic levels, it is important to highlight a significant milestone: December of last year set a notable record, being the month with the second highest number of overnight tourists. in the history of Belize, with 55,574 tourists. This outstanding achievement not only underlines Belize’s growing attractiveness as a tourism destination, but also indicates a positive and promising trend for the future of its tourism industry.
The cruise sector in Belize also showed significant growth in 2023, with a 47% increase in the number of cruise visitors compared to 2022, reaching a total of 904,189. Despite this impressive increase, the numbers are still 23% below those recorded in 2019. A highlight of the cruise season was the week of January 10, when Belize experienced its busiest day. On that date, four cruise ships – Carnival Dream, Carnival Magic, Sky Princess and Regal Princess – arrived in the country, bringing with them nearly 16,000 passengers. This year, Belize is anticipated to attract more than 950,000 cruise visitors, marking continued progress in this tourism segment.
As Belize continues to navigate the complexities of the global tourism landscape, these encouraging figures attest to the collective efforts and resilience of industry players, local communities and the Belize Tourism Board (BTB). The country remains committed to promoting the sustainable growth of tourism, ensuring the well-being of visitors, and preserving the unique cultural and natural treasures that make Belize a unique and fascinating destination.
The positive momentum seen in 2023 serves as evidence of Belize’s enduring appeal and its ability to adapt to changing travel dynamics. As the country looks to the future, the sector remains poised for further growth, offering an optimistic outlook for continued recovery.
Source: Belize Tourism Board