Choices abound for such a small town, many of them cheap, clean converted family homes, and most within a few blocks of each other.
Cayo District can get hot at times, but remember that it’s generally cooler than the rest of the country, so air-conditioning may not be a big priority, especially between June and February.
Also, note that most (but not all) accommodations in Cayo District quote prices with tax and service charges inclusive; most also offer deep discounts in low season and for multiple nights. As always, prices here reflect high-season double-occupancy rates.
Smith’s Family Farm (tel. 501/604-2227) is a peaceful 25-acre retreat up Branch Mouth Road with a shaded campground (US$5 pp) and collection of cabins (US$20–30), all with private baths, hot and cold water, and simple furniture. Weekly rates are available, and the owner, Roy, sometimes lets you trade labor on his organic farm for a stay at the place.
On the same road, Cosmos Camping (15 Branch Mouth Rd., tel. 501/824-2116, cosmoscamping [at] btl [dot] net, US$5 pp) is a 15-minute walk from town and has pretty grounds, many big trees, and mowed lawns where you can pitch your tent. It’s on the Mopan River and has shared baths and showers, but is kind of isolated, as the office is back up the road toward town.
A couple of miles outside San Ignacio  on the Western Highway, Inglewood (tel. 501/824-3555, www.inglewoodcampinggrounds.com ) offers full hookups for RVs. Following the same road, you’ll find campgrounds at the Clarissa Falls Resort (tel. 501/824-3916, www.clarissafalls.com ) and the Trek Stop in San José de Succotz  (tel. 501/823-2265, www.thetrekstop.com ).
The Hi-Et Guest House (tel. 501/824-2828, thehiet [at] yahoo [dot] com, US$10–25) is an excellent option on West Street, built right into the owner’s large home. The five rooms with shared baths and cold water are clean and comfortable with hardwood floors. The five rooms with private baths in the next building are a big step up in quality and not much in price—They’re well kept, with tiled floors and balconies.
The Tropicool Hotel (30A Burns Ave., tel. 501/804-3052, US$15–38) has seven simple, clean rooms with shared bath and four nicely kept and furnished cabins around a peaceful garden, each with private bath, TV, and fan.
Find quiet, friendly lodging at J & R’s Guest House (20 Far West St., tel. 501/626-3604, jrguesthouse [at] yahoo [dot] com, US$10–23); there are five rooms, one with private bath, and breakfast is included.
One of the best value midrange hotels is the
Casa Blanca Guest House (Burns Ave., tel. 501/824-2080, www.casablancaguesthouse.com , US$20–50), with eight immaculate, cozy rooms with private baths, hot and cold water, and TV, as well as access to a beautiful common living room, kitchen, balcony, and rooftop deck. It’s on Burns Avenue near the banks.
Rosa’s Hotel (65 Hudson St., tel. 501/804-2265, rosashotel [at] yahoo [dot] com, from US$28) has a selection of rooms with private baths and fans or air-conditioning (US$38); rooms range from small and stuffy to high and airy—check out a few before deciding.
A longtime standard is Venus Hotel (tel. 501/824-3203, www.venushotelbelize.com , US$30–43) on Burns Avenue, with 32 rooms. The budget rooms with shared bath are a bit run-down, with no windows. The rooms with private baths are in better condition, and you can take your pick of those overlooking the park or the street.
Martha’s Guesthouse (10 West St., tel. 501/804-3647, www.marthasbelize.com , US$50–80) continues to offer a charming, tasteful atmosphere in the center of San Ignacio , with an abundance of common lounging areas for guests to mingle in if they so desire. The 16 rooms are classy, with hardwood floors and furniture, private baths, fans, hot water, wireless Internet and cable television. Laundry services are available. There’s an excellent restaurant downstairs, as well as a front desk to arrange tours. Martha’s just expanded into a six-room annex, about a three-minute walk up Burns Avenue, with beautiful apartment-style options, several with kitchenettes and porches (US$50–65, weekly rates available).
About a quarter mile out of town, Midas Resort (tel. 501/824-3172, www.midasbelize.com , US$59–135), is a constantly improving family-run accommodation. You’ll find seven cool and airy cottages with private baths (air-conditioning available), situated on seven acres along the banks of the Macal River (down a 300-yard path from the cottages). There is a new lodge with modernly equipped rooms and a pool. A restaurant serves breakfast and lunch.
Talk about a vista! Cahal Pech Village (tel. 501/824-3740, www.cahalpech.com , US$79–119) offers a variety of rooms and cabanas spread out on a spacious hillside with stunning views of San Ignacio and the valley below. The 15 rooms have private baths and air-conditioning, or choose a thatch-and-wood cabana with private bath, hot and cold water, and porch. Family suites and cabanas are available too. A restaurant, bar, and creative swimming pool round out the resort, in addition to its quick access to the Cahal Pech ruins  right next door.
Fit for royalty, San Ignacio Resort Hotel (tel. 501/824-2034, 501/824-2125, or 800/822-3274, www.sanignaciobelize.com , US$170–200) is rightly proud of having hosted Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in 1994, and has never stopped improving the property toward the luxury side of things. From the grand marble lobby and reception hall to the lap pool and range of services, this is definitely an excellent upscale option that is both in town and remote-feeling. The hotel is perched above the Macal River and is a short downhill walk from the town center. There are 24 deluxe air-conditioned rooms, some with their own secluded balconies; the rooms have private tiled baths, TV, comfy furniture, and telephones. There is also a honeymoon suite on the second floor.
The hotel hosts the Stork Club Bar & Grill, Running W Steakhouse & Restaurant, a jungle-view patio deck ideal for bird-watching, a tennis court, disco, casino, and convention and wedding facilities. Bird-watching tours are available with the on-site guide, who can also show you the Green Iguana Conservation Project and the Medicinal Jungle Trail  on the hotel’s grounds (tours on the hour).