Nestled between the popular island of Ambergris Caye and the southern border of Mexico lies Belize’s Corozal District. Fronting the beautiful Chetumal Bay, Corozal District is an ideal mix of laid-back Caribbean and modern conveniences with a thriving expat community. Benefiting from some of the finest weather in the country due to regular breezes coming from more temperate latitudes, Corozal District is blessed with more than 300 days of gorgeous sunshine.
The cost of living in Corozal is very affordable, and the area lies just over the border of Quintana Roo state in Mexico, and Chetumal home to low-cost retailers like Wal-Mart and further up the coast the popular resort town of Cancun with many low-cost flights to the United States. Chetumal is also expanding its airport to enable it to accept International Flights. Retirees and expats in Belize can benefit from Belize’s unique QRP (Qualified Retired Persons Program) that requires just 30 days in the country per year, duty and tax-free importation of all household and personal goods, and the right to import a vehicle (including boats and small planes) duty and tax-free.
Close to all of the popular attractions in the country, including nature reserves, the Belize Barrier Reef, the colorful island town of San Pedro, horseback riding trails, and Maya ruins, Corozal District is an ideal spot to hike, sail, swim, or simply spend time outdoors bird watching, gardening, or relaxing on the beach.
Belize is the only country in Central America where the official language is English, making it simple and easy for expats to feel right at home. Corozal District has a thriving expat community that regularly meets for social events, fun sports events like bowling night, and to celebrate American and Canadian holidays. Belize has a stable, peaceful democratic government that inherited a system of British laws, making it easy to understand and enforce contracts. Belize is a strong believer in property rights, and there are no restrictions on foreigners owning homes and land in the country.
Residents in Corozal District can also easily travel back home too. Whether it’s crossing the border to Cancun or hopping on a domestic flight to Belize City from the airport in Corozal District, there are multiple non-stop flights from Belize City to major cities in North America like Miami, Atlanta, Charlotte, Newark (NJ), Los Angeles, Denver, Houston, Dallas, and Toronto (Canada).
Cerros Sands is a master-planned, gated community located right on the beautiful Chetumal Bay in Corozal District. Completed homes are for sale as well as beachfront, waterfront, and deep channel access parcels at very attractive prices. A popular expat community with outstanding infrastructure, access to top-quality healthcare facilities, and shopping, Cerros Sands is an ideal place to retire or invest in a vacation home.
A History of Corozal
Corozal is both the name of a district (equivalent to a county or province) that lies in northern Belize as well as its capital. Today, Corozal District is the northernmost district in the country, and it shares a border with Mexico’s Quintana Roo state, but it was one of the later areas of Belize to be settled. Approximately 35,000 people live in Corozal District, 10,000 of which live in or near the capital of Corozal Town.
Most of the original inhabitants of Corozal District were either Maya people or indigenous people of Mexico called “Mestizos” (Spanish for “mixed”) who fled the Caste Wars of the mid-19th century.
The name Corozal comes from the Spanish word for the cohune palm trees that thrive in this region. The name has much greater meaning for the local Maya people, however, as the cohune palm tree is a symbol of fertility. And Corozal District is one of the most fertile agricultural areas in Belize, the primary crop being sugar cane.
Corozal District has been inhabited for at least 4,000 years and served as an important crossroads for the ancient Maya people. Today’s Corozal Town was built over the ruins of an ancient Maya city now called Santa Rita, but archeologists believe its original name was Chetumal. Corozal Town lies just nine miles from the Mexican border town of Chetumal City. Just adjacent to Corozal Town lies the coastal ancient Maya center of Cerros (“Maya Hill”) that is now partially underwater.
The first Europeans to live in Corozal District were English loggers who came to the region in search of logwood and dyewood, both important plants in creating clothing dyes. The jagged coastline and multiple lagoons and bays were also used by English privateers who used the area as a base of operations from which to conduct raids on Spanish galleons laden with treasure.
Originally, Corozal was under the jurisdiction of a Spanish governor in what is today’s Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico. English loggers were allowed to operate in the area as it was considered too remote and inaccessible to properly patrol. By 1763, the presence of Englishmen in Corozal District was formally permitted by Treaty of Paris, although their numbers were very limited.
Today, Corozal Town is considered one of the loveliest urban areas in the country. An impressive mural on the side of Corozal’s town hall depicts the vibrant and long history of the area.