Halloween on Ambergris Caye: What to Expect 2023

Though not a traditional Belizean holiday, Halloween and the week leading up to it is packed with costume parties on Ambergris Caye. And since temperatures in the low to mid-80s are pretty much guaranteed for this time of year, it’s a great spot to showcase your costume—no need to wear a winter parka over your beach Barbie and Ken costumes in Belize.

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Here’s a pic of the beach this week – a perfect spot to take some photos in your Ariel the Little Mermaid sparkly tail-skirt.

The beach at Tuto Belize
Beach at Tuto Belize, 8 miles north

Or pose in front of a local fruit stand in your sexy pineapple costume. No need for an under t-shirt and pants!

Sign at Ms Gotay's Frutii Stand
Old sign at Mrs Gotay’s Fruit Stand in San Pedro

I’ll get to the list of parties around town but first, I want to talk pumpkins.

Pumpkins in San Pedro
Pumpkins for sale at the fruit stand across from Tan’s Market in San Pedro

The pretty orange pumpkins that are associated with Halloween (a very American holiday) are from colder climates. Each year a few shops get American pumpkins shipped down in refrigerated containers for sale.

I saw them yesterday at the small fruit stand just north of Caye Mart – and they start at a very reasonable $20bzd for the smallest size. The larger perfect pumpkins are going to cost a bunch more – more like $40 to 80bzd. You can find a bunch at Superbuy in town. (And American gourds! I’ve NEVER seen them in Belize – ever.)

For some reason, pumpkins are one of the very few things that fill me with nostalgia. Christmas trees? We’ve got them in Belize. Snow? I hope to never see it again. But pumpkins…they just make me feel all warm and fuzzy.

Me at Halloween
Perhaps it’s the homemade costumes my mom used to stuff us in

So I went in search of a local pumpkin. These ROCK HARD gourds are grown and sold in Belize – and used locally to make “sweets”. Stewed for ages with lots of sugar and all-spice. Dulce de Calabaza. You can see this recipe here- one recipe suggests starting the cooking time at 8 hours!

Local pumpkins for sale in San Pedro
Local pumpkins are more for eating than for displaying

Also, may I suggest an axe or a diamond-tipped drilling device to cut it? Carving for Halloween? A laser.

I call them rock pumpkins. I tried baking one once and I had to drop it from a second-story balcony TWICE to even crack it.

Local pumpkin
My local pumpkin got a good scrub

5lbs. $1.75bzd a pound. Squat, scarred, and a bit homely. I love her on our dining table/my work desk. And it’ll probably last months rather than the weeks (or day or two if you carve it) that the imports last in this heat.

Local pumpkin

Now, let’s get to the parties.

Parties in San Pedro are mostly for adults. The schools will do their own parties and some neighborhoods host trick-or-treating for the kids. There is also a huge SAGA Humane Society party for all – their biggest fundraiser of the year.

Here is what I know…

The San Pedro Town Council is hosting the first party and marketplace in the Back Football field in town

Here is the information – this looks like fun for all ages and starts at 7pm on Saturday, Oct 28th

San Pedro town council market place for Halloween

And then LATE night is the big party at the Holiday Hotel. And…I have never been to it! It starts late – there is a red carpet leading the party that gets going at about 11pm. And the party goes to the early morning.

And though I have never been – friends have shared photos from years past and it is epic (look at this woman who arrived in an ice chest). One of the parties of the year!

2023 Holiday Hotel party for Halloween

The SAGA Humane Halloween Party 2023

Now THIS party I try not to miss. I think I’ve been going since 2011? Always fun…and everyone loves dogs stuffed into costumes. Take a look at last year’s party. 2022 was so great at Toast.

Here’s the information about this year’s party. I’ll see you there.

SAGA Humane Society 2023 Halloween Party

And then other parties around the island. Please send me your information if I missed your party.

Wayo’s Beach Bar is having a Shocktober Fest party on Oct 31st starting at 2pm with a raffle, a Pine-O-Lantern carving contest and more. I’ll share the flyer when I get it!

Toast San Pedro is hosting a Bingo, BBQ, and Boos Halloween party on October 31st. You can see the details here.

Happy Halloween everyone. If you are going to any late night parties and would share pics with me, I’d be forever grateful. Let me know. 🙂

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  1. David Martin on October 22nd, 2023 at 5:31 pm

    I guess it’s obvious why the ancient people of Central America didn’t develop a Halloween Festival – there’s no Fall Harvest, right?

  2. Pat Mallahan on October 23rd, 2023 at 11:55 am

    The only ugly pumpkin is a pumpkin unloved 🙂 I saw where a guy grew a 900lb + pumkin in your old country Estados Divididos.

  3. SPmQQseBZ on October 23rd, 2023 at 7:52 pm


  4. SPmQQseBZ on October 23rd, 2023 at 7:54 pm