Vanessa Barg, founder of Gnosis Chocolate and a holistic nutrition counselor, will be leading tastings of Gnosis 'raw' chocolate (including a bar made exclusively for this trip!) and will give talks about the benefits of a raw foods diet.
Clay Gordon, founder of TheChocolateLife.com has planned a host of chocolate and cacao-themed activities - including visiting a cacao farm and farm family, starting a fermentation pile, visiting the Toledo Cacao Growers Association (the first co-op in the world to be both organic AND Fairtrade certified), and making chocolate from the bean. In addition, Clay will be hosting tastings (of non-raw chocolate) in the evenings along with talks about the ethnobotany of chocolate.
Single Occupancy: $2400
Double Occupancy: $2200/pp
3 or 4 in a cabana: $1950/pp
LAST CHANCE TO SIGN UP!
Send Clay an e-mail to reserve your spot and send a check (made out to Gnosis Chocolate) for the amount (in full) to:
33-10 Crescent St #3E
Astoria, New York 11106
All activities provide participants with the option to come along and enjoy the beauty and tranquility of the Belizean landscape. Simply relaxing at the Cotton Tree Lodge - whether sitting on the dock down by the river or lying in the hammock on the porch of your cabana, or reading a book in the gazebo - is one of the "special activities" that's always available.
Participation in any of the planned activities, is, of course, completely at your discretion and sense of well-being. Some activities involve exercise (the cave swim, for example) and some might be a little more adventurous than you're comfortable with (waterfall jumping, for example).
The following schedule is somewhat weather dependent and so the order may need to be adjusted depending on weather conditions.
Day 1, Saturday, February 20th - Welcome!
Travel Day. Guests arrive at Belize City Airport (code BZE)
Transfer to Punta Gorda (PG) (guides take last flight out)
Arrive in PG, xfer to CTL via boat or car (weather and time if day dependent)
Check in to Cotton Tree Lodge
Unpack, clean up, relax
Orientation Reception (featuring fresh local juices and more)
Gnosis chocolate tasting for dessert
Day 2, Sunday February 21st - Ease into it... by Making Chocolate!
Tour of CottonTree Lodge's organic garden, cacao trees, medicinal plant walk
Start making chocolate, from bean to nib
Waterfall jumping at Rio Blanco and/or self-guided nature walk
Day 3, Monday February 22nd - Cacao Farm!
Visit Eladio Pop's cacao farm, lunch with the family, return with cacao pods!
Extract seeds from pods, start fermentation
Cacao tea demonstration
Clay Talk: ethnobotanical history of cacao and chocolate
Day 4, Tuesday, February 23rd - Beautiful Belize!
Visit Mayan ruins at Lubantuun
Blue Creek Cave swim
Day 5, Wednesday, February 24th - Sun, Bathe, Relax!
All-day snorkel trip to Snake Caye
Day 6, Thursday, February 25th - Explore the Chocolate Connection!
Tour PG (market, Taino crafts, etc)
Toledo Cacao Grower's Association visit
Finishing the batch of chocolate
Day 7, Friday, February 26th - Giving Back & Farewell Festivities!
Sustainable Harvest International activity TBD
Return to CTL after, relax, pack, etc.
Garifuna drumming / dancing
Day 8, Saturday, February 27th - Parting is such sweet sorrow...
Check out of CTL
Xfer to PG, fly to BZE, return to US
The cost of the trip is inclusive of all travel within Belize, all meals served at the Lodge, and all activity-related expenses, and taxes pertaining thereto. Not included are your bar bill at the lodge and any personal expenses and associated taxes. It is not required that you leave a tip at the Lodge for the servers, though they are always appreciated. The Lodge does accept credit cards for settling your bill when you check out.