Belize is located on the Eastern Coast of Central America, it borders with Mexico on the North, Guatemala on the South and West and the Caribbean Sea on the East. The territory of Belize is 24,000 sq km. Its population is about 290 000.
The country as well as its former capital and largest city, Belize City, is named after the Belize River.
Time zone EST -1; GMT - 6.
Belize is known as ethnically rich multilingual society with 49% Mestizo, 25% Creole, 11% Maya, 6% Garifuna and 9% other.
Due to its geographic and demographic position, culturally, Belize is both Caribbean and Central American. As far as Belize had been a British colony for more than a century, English is its official language, but most Belizeans use an English-based Belize Creole, and Spanish is very important there as it is the mother tongue of Mestizo and Central American settlers.
Belize is divided into 6 districts:
- Orange Walk,
- Stann Creek,
Belmopan, with a population of about 12 000, is the capital of Belize and the smallest national capital in the world. Belmopan was built in 1970, and the same year the government was moved there. It was built because the former capital Belize City was substantially damaged by Hurricane Hattie in 1961. The new capital serves as a hurricane refuge for Belizeans as the largest amount of hurricane shelters in Belize is situated there. Belmopan is located in the centre of the country, about 80 kilometres to the south-west of Belize City. This city is called the Garden City of the country.
As it has already been mentioned above, Belize City with a population of 80,000 is the largest city in the country. Besides, it is the major commercial centre and one of the most urbanised centres of Belize.
Other big cities of Belize are Corozal Town, Orange Walk Town, San Ignacio/Santa Elena, San Pedro Town, Dangriga Town, Benque Viejo del Carmen and Punta Gorda Town.