For beach lovers like me, nothing compares to the tropical island of Ambergris Caye in Belize! The lively town, friendly locals, and abundant marine life are just a few of my favorite things. I'll never forget seeing the aquatic world that lurks just below the clear Caribbean water for the first time, where I saw barracuda, rainbow fish, turtles, nurse sharks, lion fish, green eels, and many more amazing animals in the wild.
Katie, South & Central America & USA Specialist
Katie grew up with a passion for travel. At the age of 13, she traveled alone on horseback across Ireland. This sparked her travel bug — and it's been insatiable ever since. From family vacations to South Carolina to traveling with volunteer groups throughout Central America, Katie has made travel a priority in her life and continues to find it a huge source of passion and growth.
Katie is happy to travel any chance she gets, whether it’s a long weekend in the Deep South or a month long backpacking adventure across Central and South America. She has spent more than 15 weeks on her own traveling around the US and parts of the world. Some favorite memories include learning to line dance in Nashville, walking hundreds of miles across Spain, swimming alongside turtles in Belize, white-water rafting in Costa Rica, and hiking the Inca Trail in Peru.
Katie joined Audley in 2017 and specializes in the Deep South USA, Belize, Costa Rica, Ecuador and the Galapagos, and Peru.
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Belcampo is my favorite hotel in Belize. Nestled up on a hill next to the Rio Grande River, this accommodation offers breathtaking views of the river and jungle in luxury rooms. I highly recommend splurging for the hilltop suites, only accessible by stairs — or your own private tram! These suites boast private infinity pools, an outdoor bar area, and chance to see monkeys hanging outside your room. All room types here also feature plush beds, spa-style bathrooms and unbeatable rainforest views. I value Belcampo's focus on sustainable food production and agritourism. A fun way to spend a low-key day there is to sip on cocktails and chow down on delicious food plucked fresh that day from the on-site organic farm.
I'll never forget when…
My favorite activity in South America was the rigorous KM 104 hike to arrive to Machu Picchu. This hike is the last portion of the famous Inca Trail. After waking up in the wee hours of the morning, we took a train to the trail-head. The first part of the trek is a challenging climb in altitude which can get the blood circulating. Once up at the ridgeline, the hike seems to skate along the edges going from mountain to mountain, following the original Inca trails. I've never seen such stunning mountain views or felt more accomplished than when I arrived through the Sun Gate and looked down across Machu Picchu. The trail also features several smaller Inca ruins along the way that enrich the entire Inca story and give you a well-rounded view of their life at the time.