Most sights are relatively close together in Belize City , and you can walk from the Southside’s House of Culture  to the National Museum near the old U.S. embassy in the Fort George area  in about twenty leisurely minutes. This route is generally safe during the day, especially if you are traveling in a group.
Like other Central American countries, Belize has its share of problems with drugs, gangs, and violent street crime. Because of its extremely low population, however — 70,000 inhabitants, compared to millions in most Central American capitals — Belize City’s problems are nowhere near as severe as those of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala’s cities.
Still, over the last several years, violent crime has increased in Belize City, mostly in the form of petty theft, beatings, stabbings, and shootings. Much of the violent gang culture is imported from the United States by deported Belizean youths.
Most—but not all—violent crime occurs in downtown Belize City or deep in the Southside part of the city, many blocks away from the traditional walking paths of tourists, but occasional sprees have occurred throughout the city and in broad daylight.
Use the same common sense you would apply in any city in the world. Before you venture out, have a clear idea of how to get where you’re going and stick to the main streets if you’re walking. Always ask a local Belizean—like your hotel desk clerk, or a restaurant waiter—whether or not your plan is reasonable.
The government has taken steps to battle crime, including stiffer enforcement of the law and deployment of a force of tourist police, recognizable by their khaki shirts and green pants.
At night, don’t walk if you are at all unsure; taxis are plentiful, but only those with a green license plate should be considered. In fact, most Belizeans have a personal taxi driver whom they know and trust. Ask if they would be willing to call for you and get the “Belizean price.”
Don’t flash money, jewelry, or other temptations, and if threatened, hand them over. Report all crimes to the local police and your country’s embassy.
The old Swing Bridge spans Haulover Creek, connecting Belize City ’s “Northside” to its “Southside,” and it is the most distinct landmark in the city.
North of the creek, Queen and Front Streets are the crucial thoroughfares. On this side of the bridge, you’ll find the Caye Caulker Water Taxi Terminal, an important transportation and information hub. Across Front Street are the post office and library (with a quiet sitting room).
Walking east on Front Street (toward the sea), you’ll find several art galleries and shops before you come to “Tourism Village,” the hopeful, Disneyesque name used for the cruise ship passenger arrival area. The minimalls and decorations that encompass this area of docks and shops are contrived and overpriced, and owned by the cruise ship companies. The rest of the adjoining Fort George historic area  and the lighthouse are, in contrast, quite genuine and interesting to see.
On the Swing Bridge’s south end, Regent and Albert Streets make a V-shaped split and are the core of the city’s banking and shopping activity. There are a few old government buildings here, too, as well as Battlefield (Central) Park and a couple of guesthouses. Southside has a seedier reputation than Northside, which is monitored more closely by the police.