When you arrive in Belize, your passport will be stamped and you are given an immigration card, which is valid for a maximum of 30 days. If you decide to extend your stay, you must go to the local immigration office to obtain a new stamp, pay $25 US. You can continue to obtain a new stamp for six months at this price, then the next six months the price increases to $50 US.
So, about now, you are probably wondering what the hell this have to do with the “Hokey Pokey”
Well, if you are staying in the Placencia area, the nearest immigration office is in Independence/Mango Creek. The easiest way to get there is to do the “Hokey Pokey” water taxi. The boat leaves from MnM gas station on the main street in Placencia. The ticket office table where you pick up your taxi tickets and pay fees.
Terminal Office in Independence/Mango Creek
Our boat was over sold, glad we didn’t have to ride in their boat, seemed a little fast..
Cost for the water taxi is $10 US roundtrip. Its a short ten minute boat ride and actually quite a easy and beautiful little tour of the lagoon side of the area. When arriving at the boat dock, there will be taxis waiting. Grab a taxi to the immigration office, $5 US per person roundtrip. When we arrived, there were no lines, we paid the fee, were issued new cards and back in the taxi and back to boat dock. We’re good for another 30days. Very easy process!
So, if you are visiting the area and do not need to visit the immigration office, you should do the “Hokey Pokey” just to visit the Independence/Mango Creek area. Although its a small village, there are several small shops, grocery stores and local restaurants and lots of nice, friendly and very welcoming people!
With Norwegian Cruise Lines just completing their new island destination on Harvest Caye, their tender port will be located here in Independence/Mango Creek area. Previously, Norwegian has docked in Belize City and although there are mixed feelings from the community as to how this will affect the area, as for a tourist, I believe this will be a better experience! The daytrips from this southern Belize location is undeniably some of the best options you could imagine. From cave tubing, waterfalls, Mayan Ruins, fishing and snorkeling….endless options in this beautiful little country.
So after a quick boat trip to Independence and Mango Creek, a van ride to the immigration office, back to the boat and back to Placencia, we are finished for another 30 days.
Doing the Hockey Pockey was quite painless and much easier than I expected. We met some great people on the boat, the workers at the immigration office were very nice and helpful and the taxi driver gave us his number, so when we need to come over next month, he will be there waiting for us.
A very successful morning! We did the Hokey Pokey & we turned ourselves around, ………… back to Placencia!
In Belize, that’s what it’s all about!!