Belize is a country located on the northeastern coast of Central America. It is the only country in the area where English is the official language, although an English creole (Kriol) and Spanish are more commonly spoken. Belize is bordered on the north by Mexico, to the south and west by Guatemala and to the east by the Caribbean Sea. Its mainland is about 290 km (180 mi) long and 110 km (68 mi) wide.
With 22,960 square kilometres (8,860 sq mi) of land and a population of only 312,698 inhabitants (2010 census), Belize possesses the lowest population density in Central America. The country's population growth rate of 3.15% (2012 est.) is the second highest in the region and one of the highest in the western hemisphere. Belize's abundance of terrestrial and marine species, and its diversity of ecosystems give it a key place within the globally significant Mesoamerican Biological Corridor.
Belize has a diverse society, comprising many cultures and languages. It is the only nation in the region with a British colonial history, but as a part of the Western Caribbean Zone, it also shares a common colonial history with Anglophone Caribbean countries. In general, Belize is considered to be a Central American and Caribbean nation with strong ties to the entire Latin American and Caribbean region. Belize is a member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), and the Central American Integration System (SICA), the only country to hold full membership in all three regional organizations.
Belize is known for its September Celebrations, and is the birthplace of chewing gum and Punta music.