Reviews By Recents Guests
Enclosed are some of the reviews left by our past guests in our Guest Book and in web sites in just the last year. They do capture well the experience you can expect when visiting Bird Island.
Bird Island is a truly unique experience, with a level of disconnectedness from the world that was completely new. Though we had access to Wi-Fi and streamed music, FaceTimed our kids, etc., the sheer emptiness of our schedule led to relaxation of a depth I don't think any of us had been to in years. Some logistics for planning: Fly into Belize City and immediately connect via Maya Air to Placencia. We got in the day before we were set to head to the island. We stayed at Brisa Oceano resort, which had nice rooms at a fair price, and coordinated with Fred, who was always very attentive and enthusiastic about our happiness. The next day we walked from there to Ming's market and got 4 days worth of supplies. Fred met us there and took us to the dock and then to the island. The island was a perfect place to disconnect. Lots of reading in a hammock, casual snorkeling on a whim, and relaxation. We did the deep sea fishing trip with Thurman and (even as novices) caught enough fish for four people for the remainder of the stay. After our stay, we went back to the mainland and spent a couple more nights in the Placencia area before taking the Maya Air flight to Belize City for our flight back. But using Maya Air, it would be easy to connect to another area in the jungle or something. As a country, Belize is very easy for the American traveler, as everyone speaks English and American dollars are accepted along with the national currency. In any case, Bird Island lived up to the lofty expectations set by its wait list and its reviews. I wasn't fully prepared for the de-stressing that occurred there. Even getting back to the mainland saw the old stress levels start to increase. Truly a one-of-a-kind experience, and well worth the wait.
Bird Island offers an incredible private island escape. The island is surrounded by a living reef filled with a variety of wildlife which offers fantastic snorkeling and kayaking (supplies on the island). For guests who are not as enthusiastic about being in the water, the island offers great views, plenty of well placed hammocks, and a fire pit. The house comes with everything that you would need during your stay and items that you wouldn't have thought of including extra canned foods and cake mix! Be sure to bring copious amounts of ice, as the ice is perfect for blended drinks and keeping the beer cold, but melts quickly. Just be sure to pack veggies, sides, and lots of snacks. For food, book the fishing trip with Thorman which will supply you with enough fish for your stay. We caught snapper, mackarel and big-eyed jack, and one 2.5 foot barracuda just barely got away. Remember that you are on a small island which is surrounded by lapping water all hours of the day and night. If you are a light sleeper, earplugs may be a worthwhile item to bring along. We went diving with Seahorse, and they picked us up and dropped us off right at the island. So convenient! All the other people on the boat were jealous of our digs (we shared the secret with them). Additionally, Fred was super helpful. All the other reviews mentioning how great he was aren't lying. For those who are willing to make their own meals (fresh and saves a ton of money) and don't mind being environmentally aware (water conservation, power conservation, etc.) and want a beautiful, peaceful, well-thought out place in the middle of your own private coral reef, look no further. It's one of "those" trips you'll probably always be a little extra proud of undertaking. (Don't worry, there's still wifi if you need it. Our friends were able to facetime their kids at night to keep in touch with home). I'll be adding more pictures once I get home, but for the visually curious, here's an album to see some of what we're talking about: (Website hidden by Airbnb) Thank you Fred and Ruth! We look foward to seeing you again in (Phone number hidden by Airbnb) ! :) -Carly and Kaellie
Had an amazing stay at Bird Island which really exceeded our expectations. It was well worth the 2 year wait and it was exactly what my wife and I needed to get away from our hectic lives in NYC. Given we were kind of neurotic in our preparation for our trip, wanted to add a few specific tips beyond what was already covered (e.g. definitely do the fishing trip with Turman, etc.), hope some people find this helpful: 1. Food - Bird Island is already stocked with a full pantry of canned and dried goods. You do NOT to bring any of the following: pastas, rice, spices (salt, pepper, hot sauce, pancake syrup, etc.), canned goods, pasta sauce, coffee, tea, sugar, flour, etc. There is also a lot of purified water provided so there's no need to bring bottled water. Advise that you DO bring: fruits and vegetables for your stay, meats (accordingly, depending on whether you're doing the fishing trip -- for two people we bought two ribeye steaks, bacon, chicken wings, and Italian sausages), more beer than you think you need, liquor, juices / milk, bread, eggs, limes, and other perishable things you may want to eat. The bottom line is - given how well stocked Fred and Ruth keep the place, you definitely won't starve. 2. Food shopping - highly advise you inform Fred on where you're staying prior so that you can be picked up and brought shopping (vegetable/fruit stand + Ming's) the morning you head to the island. There were some reviews that indicated that they didn't prepare well for the shopping, but with this pickup we were brought from our hotel (Brisa Oceano Resort - which was great too) via an SUV to the market and then loaded the shopping bags back into the car --> onto the boat. This was far easier than we expected as we didn't have to lug around lots of grocery bags. 3. Cooking - besides a well stocked pantry, there is a full stove + oven, as well as a wood-charcoal grill -- we used the grill pretty much every day for dinner to cook the meats + fish (you may want to look up some easy to prep fish on the grill recipes) as well as grilled veggies. Again - LOTS of spices are already provided, as well as the requisite cookware, utensils, etc.. Whoever is manning the charcoal gill for dinner also gets probably the most amazing sunset view I've ever seen. 4. Bugs - there weren't any when we went, but NO NEED to bring bug spray, as there was plenty provided on the island that we did not use. 5. Sunscreen - make sure you DO bring this. 6. Toiletries - no need to bring soaps / shampoos or towels - its very well provided. Obviously do bring your own tooth brush and tooth paste. 7. Transportation from the airport --> Placencia. We took a car services (All in One Travel) from BZE to Placencia (~3.5 hour drive) and then flew Maya Air on the way back to BZE. Highly recommend this approach as you get to see Belize from the ground and the All in One Travel driver (shout out to Cameron!!) was awesome and not only knew a lot about Belize, but also we stopped at a great local place for lunch and a homemade ice cream place (where the ice cream was made in house -- as in, you could literally identify the cow the milk came from to make the ice cream). Flying back was obviously much faster but really appreciated driving through the rain forest, etc. and seeing Belize from the ground. 8. Leave your bad attitude at home - this is a place to truly relax and really a time to bond with those that you care about. Also, Placencia was a great town to hang out in with great beaches, drinks, food, etc. Hope this helps!
If you enjoy total Privacy, Sky day & especially night, the Water & life above/below surface of your own island.. this is for you 100% I wouldn't be able to top my experience on this perfect & affordable dream ever. Grateful for crossing advertisement & memories my heart of mind will cherish. A blessed, self care & girls trip that validates beauty of LIFE.. We will be back, better Belize IT, on Bird Island!
Fred & Ruth are great hosts. Enjoyed everything about the island, a true paradise. Fishing Trip with Thurman was excellent too, caught enough fish to eat during our 5 night stay. The snorkeling on the reef around the island was amazing!!! Would love to go back! Cynthia
Fred, Ruth and family are wonderful hosts, and with Thurman and Leomar it's a great team overall. Bird Island is an absolutely fabulous vision of a place. A magical getaway setting surrounded by natural beauty, a well designed and engineered facility with thoughtful provisions and amenities, an exhilarating adventure overall. Definitely book a fishing trip with Thurman, and ask Fred about options for trips to the surrounding islands and snorkeling excursions. Stock up on booze duty free at the airport, and just get perishables at the local grocery before heading out. Go with a sense of adventure, go with peace of mind. You will create and discover memories to last.
Oh my, Bird Island is a wonder. Our family had an absolutely magical time! It was great for our kids ages 10, 8, and 9 months. Fred and Ruth are exceptional hosts, Thurman’s fishing trip was fantastic, and the island itself is just beyond words - peaceful, stunning, extremely homey, and full of wildlife/adventure for the kids. There are so many thoughtful touches, special spaces, incredible snorkeling - we even managed to be there for the exquisite show of bioluminescence in the water at night. Not to mention the stars - we could see the Milky Way! Fred and Ruth make sure you have everything you could possibly need for the trip of a lifetime. Bird Island exceeded our every expectation and was well worth the 2+ year wait. If you get the chance to book this very special experience, do not hesitate! We are already planning our next visit to see Fred, Ruth, Leo, Thurman, and Mia the Bird.
Two of us stayed on Bird Island February 5-9, 2019. The place is terrific! We do a lot of sailing and being on the island is a lot like being on a big boat, but without the worries. Just remember this place is an adventure. It's not five star, perfect-in-every-way, luxury accommodations. It's a funky, cute place that's well-maintained and constantly updated and upgraded, but it's still a rustic retreat on a private island. For us it was the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of a New York winter. We would go again in a heart beat. Snorkeling around the island is great - we saw lot's of cool stuff and it was different every day. We kayaked to the neighboring islands and had a look around. There's fishing, bird watching, fish watching, crab watching, swimming. We spent a lot of time laying in the hammocks reading trashy novels (there's a bunch on the island). Pros: - super cute place - spotlessly clean - fully equipped (really, really well equipped) - location is amazing (great snorkeling, kayaking, etc.) - great sunrises and sunsets. - very romantic - Fred made all the transfers and provisioning seamless - great excuse to leave your mobile devices off for a few days. - you will make friends with the little crabs that climb in and out of the planter by the kitchen door - they are amazing to watch! Cons: - can't think of any. - oh wait - our stay was too short! Suggestions: - bring more booze than you think you'll need. - bring less clothes than you think you'll need (you don't need any!) - go easy on bringing condiments - there's a lot on the island already - make sure you go with people you like - ask Fred about private excursions - he'll set you up. - snorkel on the outside edge of the reef and plot your return to the island carefully.
Bird Island is nothing short of pure magic. It’s worth every penny. The second we got there we could tell how much thought and care the hosts put in to the island, we seriously can’t wait to come back!
Hard to add anything the other reviewers haven’t. Truly a surreal experience, a peek into marine life seemingly undisturbed by humans. Waking up every day to sting rays, barracuda, schools of feeding fish, diving pelicans - it was magical. And that’s not evening mentioning the phenomenal snorkeling available right off the docks. Bird island is a must for any ocean lovers.
What a special and beautiful experience we had! We will be going back as soon as possible! We had such a great stay! I especially liked how we were literally on the water! We could jump in and swim throughout the day and night. We used kayaks all the time and experienced outstanding snorkeling and swimming. We loved all special touches like sunscreen, cooking utensils plus spices, games, speaker for our music and extra care from Fred and his team. Everything is open and peaceful plus some cozy areas for reading and napping. You will be delighted.
What an amazing trip to have added and been able to check off our bucket list! So worth every second of the wait! We've looked forward to this for roughly a year and a half and our stay was everything we hoped for and more! Please please book the fishing trip with Thorman- it's worth every penny! We went out on our first full day and had SO MUCH fun! Not to mention we were able to catch some awesome fish! Spanish Mackerel, Barracuda, Horse Eye Jack, Common Jack (or some variety), and plenty of Yellowtail Snapper. Pro tip indeed to book this early so you have plenty of time to enjoy the bounty for the remainder of your trip. We brought lime and butter for grilling but also had a wonderful stove top fry using salsa and rice to make a basic pan paella. This will help you with planning groceries so you don't need to lug too much along too. Snorkeling was awesome as was Kayaking, but you will also be able to watch the wildlife right from the dock! We saw octopus (at night via flashlight), a variety of sting rays (spotted eagle was my absolute fav!), nurse sharks (when cleaning fish), barracuda, snapper, puffer fish, and more! Watching the pelicans dive for fish and feeding banana's to the hermit crabs that live under the deck was another fun pastime. Lastly the bioluminescence at night means you can star gaze in the sky AND in the ocean. We recommend bringing a book or two to enjoy from the hammocks and/or a puzzle or game to enjoy at night. That said there are books, puzzles, and games all there as well! Thank you Fred & Ruth for your hospitality, Leo for ferrying us to and from while being extra accommodating and delivering us straight to our hotel after, Jeff for for the hidden secrets and tips, and Thorman for an amazing fishing expedition! We will be recommending this to all our family and friends for years to come!
Fred and Ruth run a first class show! Fresh paint, super clean and well stocked. If you have forgotten something from the pantry, chances are it is at the home. Many different places to lounge about. Multiple hammocks! The wildlife viewing and photo opportunities are endless. Swimming and snorkeling were wonderful as was the fishing for lobster and conch! Sunrises and sunsets to take your breath away. Sleeping to the sounds of waves lapping. So crazy good! I have waited years to visit and definitely will return! A slice of heaven on earth. Don’t think twice about the rate-just book it.
Bird Island should be a "must do" item on your list of things to do while visiting Placencia Belize. It's beautiful, it's a true Robinson Crusoe experience, has great wildlife viewing, and has total privacy. Fred and his family make you feel very welcome. There are three separate sleeping areas, two of which include a full bathroom and TV. You can watch both the sunrise and sunset every day! Taking the Kayaks around the reef it's amazing. It's just one of those things that should be on you're bucket list. I recommend staying 3 to 4 days on Bird Island and then staying 3 to 4 days in Placencia in order to meet and mingle with the great people of Belize. If I had to sum up the best part of Placencia Belize, it would absolutely be the amazing friendly people there.
Awesome as usual!! Fred and Ruth are a joy! Thurman was great on our fishing day and found us fish, lobster and conch. He even taught us how to clean and cook conch which came in handy a few days later. Improvements are always being put in place, much had changed since my initial trip in Jan 2016. Perfect relaxation and amazing snorkeling! Hated to leave....but I’ll be back! Thanks Fred!
Wow! We had this trip planned for 2 years and we can’t even explain how amazing it was! Snorkeling, reading, fishing, hanging out and star gazing. Everything was great. The fishing trip is a must and we caught way more fish than we could eat. Will definitely do it again Thanks
Ok, like other reviews said - DO IT. Such an amazing crazy experience. This place is beautiful, tranquil and peaceful, yet full of sightseeings as it's right on a reef. Our days were full of snorkeling and kayaking, and in between resting on hammocks watching the birds. Seriously, if youre in doubt whether to do it - do it.
Stop what you are doing and book it. Just book it. It’s impossible to put into words the happiness we found on Bird island. It’s beautiful, comfortable, charming and secluded to say the least. Then top that off with outstanding hospitality. Fred, Ruth and leo were just fantastic. Pro tip book the fishing trip with Thurman early as possible. He’s a gem. We are rebooking now.
This is truly your own little island, not a resort. You are on your own out here but do have a method to communicate if needed. There are the regular amenities plus some extras. It is in a great location, not far from many dive sites. This is the ideal get away from it all place. Fred was great. Transportation from the airport is provided as well as a stop at the store prior to the boat ride to the island. Make sure to buy everything you will need for your whole stay as well as several bags of ice if you like it in your drinks. You will need bug spray too. Mosquitos love me and I used a lot. This is a place not to be missed and was well worth the 19 month wait after booking. I highly recommend.
Bird Island is a magical place. You have a beautiful oasis in the sea with a complete atoll around you. You have solitude, yet every convenience. Fred, Ruth and Leomar are really great people and they have created something really special. Thank you so much for letting us come experience it. I’m booking it again for sure.
Bird Island is an amazing escape for vacation! I will share below some of my personal suggestions, starting with the most important...book this island! Our trip started with the prompt arrival of our boat with Captain Leo. We had a rental vehicle that we were able to park in a secure place for the duration of our stay on the island. We brought 3 bags of ice with us...just about right to last our 5 days and 4 nights. Anything more than 3 bags won't fit in the freezer, but we did have a cooler available for use, however the ice won't last more than a day or 2 in there. There are also ice trays but depending on how much you drink and like them chilled they probably won't be enough to sustain you each day by the time they freeze. I recommend getting ice from the gas station/marina right where you are picked up so you can grab it last minute and not have to carry it very far! As for groceries/food, the local grocery and fruit stand are good. I also recommend the local tortilla place for tortillas and chips. If you are not coming to Placencia directly from the airport I recommend hitting up fruit stands elsewhere first, as the one is Placencia wasn't quite as robust as some others, but will definitely suffice. When purchasing items be mindful of what MUST go in the fridge, as there is limited space and cooling ability, but we were able to just rotate what we needed cold in. Our ride out to the island was nice. It was a breezy day so we had some waves but Leo made it a smooth and comfortable drive for us. Upon arrival Fred, Ruth, and Jeff (island neighbor/security) met us, helped us unload, and Fred gave us the grand tour of the island. We were a group of 4, 2 couples. Each couple chose to stay in the unattached bungalows...more privacy/seclusion, and cooler and breezy, but all 3 rooms are amazing and have great views. We had been looking forward to the smorgasbord fishing tour with Thorman. Unfortunately that did not pan our until our 3rd and final full day. Despite the wait, when we did get to go it was amazing, a great experience and we got lots of fish. Would have been great to do earlier (which was suggested and the plan) just so we had fish to eat the entire time. While it was disappointing to go later in our stay, fortunately the shelves are stocked so we were able to have rice and beans and spaghetti for dinner. There were plenty of dry/canned goods so you will not go hungry even if you don't catch all the fish you can eat. If you like your food with some heat, I would recommend bringing some chili powder or hot sauce. There are plenty of other spices available for cooking. Weather wise we were there in the off/rainy season...
There is not much to be said that hasn't already been. It is a unique trip for people who know how and want to just relax.
What can we say Fred, you guys knocked it out of the park with the bird island property, how you handle your customers, the boat ride, Thurman, every aspect was covered. Congratulations on putting together a world class experience for the climax of our 20th wedding anniversary trip to your wonderful Belize.
Bird Island is a magical place that I'll never forget and will definitely return to in the near future. From the spectacular snorkeling around the reef around the island to kayaking to the little nearby conch island, there's really no shortage of ways to take in your stunning surroundings. Fred is also a super awesome and funny guy who's lways working on new enhancements and add-ons to the island. One tip: Do the fishing trip with Thorman - you'll have more fish to eat that you'll be able to as you effortlessly pull them out of the ocean.
This was hands down one of the best trips I've ever taken. The place was actually better than described or in pictures. It was truly an amazing place. Thurman is a must! He know all the fishing and snorkeling spots and is an awesome guy to be around. Fred and Ruth are amazing and made us feel at home. They are truly awesome and amazing people. If you have a chance, make sure to just book it. I will definitely be back one day, hopefully soon!