Belize has reopened its land borders to tourists arriving from Mexico and Guatemala.
The Central American country has set up COVID-19 screening stations at its borders in an effort to prevent the further spread of the pandemic in the country.
“We are taking every measure possible to reopen our tourism economy in a responsible way,” said tourism minister Anthony Mahler.
The COVID-19 pandemic has hit Belize particularly hard. Nearly half of its economy is reliant on tourism.
The tiny country of 390,000 inhabitants has reported only 324 deaths, but the government acknowledges that the real number is likely much higher.
The country has also struggled to vaccinate its population against the virus, as it has mostly relied on international donations. Under 3% of Belize’s population has been inoculated against COVID-19.
Belize has also reopened its tax free shopping zone along the Corozal-Chetumal border.
Belize is well known to international travellers for its beautiful beaches, archaeological sites, and creole culture which is a mix African, Caribbean, European, Indigenous and Asian traditions.
Popular tourist destinations include Ambergris Caye, the ruins of Altún Ha and the giant marine sinkhole known as Great Blue Hole.
The country obtained its independence from the United Kingdom in 1981 and is the only nation in Central America where English is spoken as the official language, even though outsiders often find its dialect is sometimes hard to understand.