The Belize Barrier Reef is a series of coral reefs straddling the coast of Belize. The Belize Barrier Reef is a 300 km (185 miles) section of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System. It totals 960 km² (370 miles²) in area, including the Great Blue Hole. Because of its exceptional natural beauty, significant on-going ecological and biological processes, and it contains the most important and significant natural habitats for in-situ conservation of biological diversity (criteria VII, IX, and X), the Reserve System has been designated as a World Heritage Site since 1996.Great Blue Hole Postcard
The Great Blue Hole is a large underwater sinkhole that lies near the center of Lighthouse Reef, a small atoll 60 miles from the mainland and Belize City. The hole is circular in shape, over 1,000 feet across and 400 feet deep. It was formed as a limestone cave system during the last ice age when sea levels were much lower. As the ocean began to rise again the caves flooded, and the roof collapsed.
Belize Barrier Reef Wikipedia Entry
Great Blue Hole Wikipedia Entry