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International Costa Maya Festival – A Week of Culture and Festivities

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First conceived as a celebration of the wider Maya world with participants from Belize, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Mexico in 1992, the festival has since blossomed to become one of the most popular events on the Belizean calendar. The festival begins with a beauty pageant featuring contestants from the “Mundo Maya” countries and then explodes in a celebration of dance, food, art, games, and music.

Why You Have to Attend the International Costa Maya Festival

A celebration of all things Maya, the festival is a colorful mix of a beauty pageant, music including Punta, Salsa, Merengue, Soca, Reggae, and traditional Maya melodies, riotous parades, and a celebration of food, art, and merrymaking.

The first night of the festival begins with a beauty pageant featuring the winners of regional contests from neighboring countries as well as representatives from Europe, North America, and Australia. Contestants demonstrate elegance, poise and beauty in evening gown, bathing suit, and talent categories, with the winner given the coveted title of Miss Costa Maya International.

The first night then rocks the enthusiastic crowds with performances from some of the country’s premiere musical groups, with dancing lasting until dawn. The following days of the festival include lively parades, entertainment for children, demonstrations of folkloric and traditional dance and music, a breathtaking array of food and drink, and merrymaking for festivalgoers of all ages.

Where in Belize Is the International Costa Maya Festival Held?

The International Costa Maya Festival is held in the streets of San Pedro Town, the capital of Ambergris Caye. Various locations in the town feature musical entertainment, games, face-painting booths, food stalls, and local arts and crafts.

When Is the International Costa Maya Festival Held?

The three-day festival is always held in August on a weekend but the dates vary from year to year. In 2016, the festival will be held from August 4-6.

How to get to the International Costa Maya Festival

The festival is always held in San Pedro Town, the capital of Ambergris Caye. There is regular domestic air service with Tropic Air between Belize City and other locations in Belize to the airport in San Pedro. Private watercraft services also offer connections to the island.

Best way to experience the International Costa Maya Festival

Bring your party hat with you as the International Costa Maya Festival is a raucous celebration of beauty, culture, art, food, music, and fun.

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