Letter to the Editor: Val Long on unsafe swimming areas

Monday, May 25th, 2015

Dear Editor;
We are amongst the more affluent tourists, blessed with double income and therefore able to afford to vacation for up to a full month each winter, sometimes split up by visiting two travel destinations per year. We are able to choose from various tropical destinations from Hawaii, the Caribbean to the South Pacific.

Our (enclosed) picture shows what our resort on your island was able to offer as the secure & safe swimming area in the ocean for guests. That was at one of the top locations on the island.
At the beginning we were cautioned to swim within a confined area secured and surrounded by buoys, an area in size smaller than our living room at home. Both resort pools were even larger in size.
Like many other travelers we do not like to use pools due to chlorination. And using a pool would defy our desire to swim in a warm ocean while on vacation.
The other safe option offered was to swim in knee to hip deep waters between docks; also an area where we could not been hit by boats.
First, we thought they were kidding but then we learned that other vacation guests vacationing had been injured or even killed by passing boats while swimming or snorkeling in/around dock vicinity. Further, we were informed that there were no rules and hardly any sufficient regulations for boat traffic in coastal areas and nothing to protect swimmers. There were no rules for boat drivers to stay away in safe distance despite plenty of ocean available further out. Also, we learned that North on your island conditions and boat traffic was even worse and more dangerous. This is appalling!
We feel obligated to warn other passionate ocean swimmers on social media by posting about the unacceptable ocean safety conditions on Ambergris Caye.
/s/ Val Long
Denver, CO


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  1. You are your own person, and can swim where you want. however this area was designated as safe for you to swim in by your resort. What they were trying to tell you is that if you swim outside the area you do so at your own risk.

    If you are as well seasoned a traveler as you claim, you would know that Ambergris Caye is not a beach destination, but is famous for it’s diving and snorkeling.

    We are what we are. I am getting tired of all these tourists who come here for a week and piss all over San Pedro on Social media because it is not how THEY think it SHOULD be.

    Perhaps you would be more comfortable at another destination such as Antigua, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, St. Maarten, or Mexico all have very nice beaches. If you were coming here expecting pristine beaches, then you did not do your homework and it’s your own fault.

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