Traditions and customs of Belize

What traditions and customs are there in Belize?

Let’s know what customs and traditions of Belize are the ones that stand out.

Food and economy

Food in daily life

Imported bleached wheat flour, corn, beans, rice, and poultry are daily staples. There are hardly any food taboos, but there are beliefs in all ethnic groups that certain foods, particularly soups and drinks, help restore health.

Food customs on ceremonial occasions

Apart from the specific preferences for some foods in large religious ceremonies, especially among the Garifuna, the foods that are eaten in the ceremonies are basically those that are eaten on a daily basis.

At such ceremonies, there are usually store-bought alcoholic beverages. Only in some rural communities are home-fermented fruit wines drunk.


Despite a tradition of openly accepted relationships, there has always been a high social value in unions blessed by the church. Between Creoles and Garífunas, there may be long-standing customary law unions that are eventually recognized. Among the Mayans, men and women begin their conjugal life before the age of 18.

Mestizos start a few years later and tend to stay in long-term unions. There are strict requirements for divorce, but couples from broken marriages often live with others in common-law unions.


Religious beliefs

Christianity is the main religion. Most of the people are Roman Catholic, Anglican, Methodist, Baptist or Mennonite. There are some Muslims and Hindus.

Religious practitioners

The power of the churches comes both from their spiritual strength and from the state. State law allows churches to incorporate, relieving them of paying taxes. Ministers are state-approved marriage officers, and are integrated by the state as partners in the management of the vast majority of primary schools.

Rituals and Holy Places

Belize City and Belmopan are important locations for religious denominations. St. John’s Anglican Cathedral was consecrated in Belize City in 1826. Roman Catholics have cathedrals in Belize City and Belmopan.

Death and life after death

In the areas of death and the afterlife, the non-Christian belief systems of ethnic groups are most notable. Most groups hold elaborate ceremonies on behalf of the deceased. All ethnic groups believe that their ancestors can intervene to influence everyday life.

Secular celebrations

Three secular holidays predate the nationalist movement. March 9, Baron Bliss Day, celebrates a British benefactor who established a trust fund for the country’s welfare.

Commonwealth Day on the fourth Monday in May celebrates the participation of the British Commonwealth of Nations. Saint George’s Day Caye on September 10 commemorates the colonists’ victory in Spain ‘s last military effort to retake Belize in 1798.

Public holidays introduced as a result of the nationalist movement and subsequent independence are May 1, September 21, October 12 and November 19.

International Labor Day is celebrated on May 1, September 21 marks the day Belize gained independence in 1981, October 12 is Latin America Day, and November 19 commemorates the arrival and settlement of the Garifuna people.

Arts and Humanities

The artists support themselves mainly by selling their works in exhibitions and performing in concerts. Buyers include wealthy Belizeans displaying art for their private pleasure. The National Arts Council promotes the formation and exhibition of various forms of art.

Literature, graphic arts and performing arts

A small body of written literature is published locally. There is a potentially rich source of oral literature, but it is barely preserved in writing. The best developed graphic arts are painting and sculpture. The sculpture is based on a rich tradition of using wood.

Mainly self-taught people whose work demonstrates folkloric dimensions are engaged in painting and sculpture. A similar localized mode prevails in the performing arts, except for theater and dance. Regional and international plays are performed in schools and occasionally for the public. There is a lot of public support for these events.

Punta Rock music is a component of the national culture that was created in the early 1980s by the Garífunas. It has become popular along the Caribbean coast of Central America.

Share the customs and traditions of Belize.

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