Hopkins is one of the most picturesque villages in Belize. Primarily inhabited by the Garifuna people, Hopkins is located on the southeastern Caribbean coast in Stann Creek District and has been voted numerous times as the Friendliest Village in Belize.
Located adjacent to where the Sittee River meets the Caribbean, Hopkins Village fronts a large, beautiful bay measuring around five miles long. The village is split into two parts by the water, the area of Baila on the northern side and False Sittee on the southern side.
Named for a popular itinerant preacher who toured the country in the early part of the 20th century, Hopkins was founded in 1942 after a hurricane devastated the village of Newtown further up the coast. Approximately 1,500 people live in Hopkins, most of which are engaged in traditional occupations like farming and fishing.
Today, Hopkins Village’s primary attractions include strolling along the beach, fishing, and heading out to the nearby South Water Caye Marine Reserve on the Belize Barrier Reef to enjoy activities like snorkeling and scuba diving. Hopkins Village, however, is best known for its Garifuna cultural attractions, including workshops on drumming, dancing, and making traditional Garifuna foods. Indeed, it is not unusual to hear Garifuna drumming echoing throughout the village and some of the finest musicians in Belize hail from Hopkins.
There are also several excellent restaurants in Hopkins that specialize in Garifuna dishes such as hudut, a fish stew made with plantains and coconuts. There are also several hotels and resorts located in or adjacent to Hopkins Village.
Hopkins is located very close to the vast Mayflower Bocawina National Park, a great place to enjoy a swim at the base of a waterfall, hike through the jungle tour some ancient Maya ruins, or enjoy some of the longest zip line courses in the country.
If you’re interested in visiting or exploring Hopkins and the surrounding area, you can rent a vehicle from Barefoot Rentals and Service. Barefoot has a wide range of vehicles available, including SUVs, pickup trucks, motorbikes, and golf carts. Barefoot also offers shuttle services to Hopkins for travelers who don’t want to drive themselves.
Barefoot Services and Rentals organizes tours to all of the top destinations in southern Belize, including the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, the Bocawina Mayflower National Park, the Marie Sharp’s hot sauce factory in Dangriga, boat tours of the Monkey River, and day tours in and around Placencia.