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Roatan Information


A rich past of exploration and discovery.

"Las Islas de la Bahia"- the musical spanish name for the Bay Islands. They rise out of the warm Caribbean water from atop the undersea mountain range of Bonacca and shimmer against their azure backdrop.

Temperatures range between the mid 70s on up to the high 80s with cooler temperatures during the months of October through January when the rains begin.

 
   
 
   
 
 


The population of the Bay Islands is a tropical blend of islanders, who call themselves "Caracoles", immigrants from mainland Honduras and expatriates from a vast assortment of nations.

The islanders are believed to have been the exclusive domain of the ancient indigenous Paya. The forest still hides relics of the people that once inhabited the isles. Evidence of indigenous presence on the islands dates as far back as Pre-Columbian times. several sites have revealed archaeological tresures of jade jewerly, pottery and tools. The Paya are believed to be an extension of the Maya empire of Mesoamerica. Thousands of years later, the islands were rediscovered by incredible individuals that ranged from explores to the sword-wielding pirates.

The islands have a rich past of exploration and discovery; of treasures and cargoes; and of pirates and their ships. The dispute regarding ownership of the Bay Islands, Belize and the Mosquito Coast surged in the late 1600s and gave rise to the pirates. Days of lawlessness descended on the warm tropical countries for almost twenty years. The days of pillaging took their toll and with a increase of British militery presence in the area, the pirates' era came to an end.

Sugar cane, pineaple and bananas soon became cash crops for the once-marauding, now-retired pirates. During the 1800s an influx of settlers from grand Cayman of English and Scotish descent arrived on the islands and called them home.

Today the blend of cultures has solidified into "La Vida Islena", the islands life. Held togather by tradition, history and unity among the island residents, the Bay Islands are fast becaming one of the most interesting destination for travelers today.

There's something about being surrounded by ocean that is compelling. The sky and the horizon tend to blur into one another and there's an irrepressible need to be in the water. Whether it's snorkeling, diving, kayaking or fishing, the ocean's the place to be.

Snorkeling is the way to go for non-divers. Beautiful underwater sculptures are formed by the colorful and richly textured coral. You'll find pillar, fire and elkhorn, to name a few. Massive brain corals nestle in the sand and a profusion of anemones and colorful clown fish. Be mindful of the current and the rise and fall of the waves when near the reef.

Hit the beaches when in search of sea kayaks. Rental outfits set up right on the beach and will rent per hour or per day. Ask around for tips on the currents and the best spots to visit, everyone knows of a particular spot that they will recommend.

If you don't dive and are interested in PADI certification, diving outfits on the islands are plentiful and flexible. No matter what day of the week you arrive, you'll surely find a class to start within a day or two. For divers and snorkelers alike, underwater activities are spectacular.

There are marine parks found off the coasts and are an adventure to explore. Follow park rules and help the areas continue to be a source of awe and wonder for its future visitors.

Dive sites include visits to drop-off points of world renown. Check out the daily dives posted around town and choose from a variety of sites. Dive instructors and dive masters are more than eager to pass along good infornation.

The island of Roatan is known worldwide for its pelagic sightings. Whale sharks are often seen feeding off the currents of nutrients rising from the depths beside drops in the ocean floor. According to a Roatan local, some divers are lucky enough to see several in one dive. These drops are also excellent places to see free swiming schools of plankton feeding fish such as yellow fin jack. Their colors are brilliant.

When not sumerged in the nether regions of the water, take on the islands tour. Rent a car or a bike but take a few hours to meander through the streets on the islands. Be part of the island life for a while.

Mountain biking has increased in popularity. Whether its just to lazily pedal your way to the comfortable cafe down the street or push yourself to ascend the nearest hilltop, take the physical approach to the vacation and sweat out the toxin.

Todays' travelers search for healthy enviroments, secluded spots and a certain communion with nature. This island of Roatan, beckons to the traveller that wants to forget about deadlines and meetings. This is a place where the sun takes longer to travel across the sky. Time doesn't pass in a blur of meetings and calls, but inches along in the lime-colored stripes of the parrot fish. Dark lilac sea fans wave slowly in the current beneath the waves and the sun's rays pierce the water in sharp shafts of luminecence. Take a few deep breathes and savor the moments as you glide through another world-an island world.

Roatan Island

The largest of the Bay Islands, Roatan is one of the most popular of the islands that lie along the Caribbean coast. Only 30 nautical miles off the coast of Honduras lies this world unto itself. Hard work by concerned islanders has made this jewel into a mecca for travelers ensuring the protection of their natural resources. The reef system that surrounds the islands is part of the second-largest in the world. It possesses a wealth of marine life. The Sandy Bay-West End Marine Park offers excellent snorkeling and dive sites. It begins on the east side's Lawson Rock and extends down the entire coast to Key Hole. It offers hours of exploration. Respect the rules set by the Island authorities regarding activities within the park.

If you want to stay on dry side, you can take a ride in the glass-bottom boat. Handy field guides on board give you the edge in identifying the myriad of colorful fish you will see.

For a unique experience,take the dolphin snorkel. After an informative 15 minutes hands-on session with the dolphin and one of his trainers, you hit the water! You're free to swim, dive and enjoy being so close to these incredible complex creatures. The visual experience alone is enough to last a lifetime.

Roatan Links

Below are some recommended sites. If you have a Roatan business and would like to exchange links, please contact us.