Located in the very heart of Central America, Honduras is a short flight from major U.S. gateways — two hours from Miami, and less than three hours from Houston and Atlanta.
But once you arrive, it’s a whole new world. Inland, Honduras is mountainous, giving this geographically tropical country a whole range of climates, including some regions that seemingly enjoy an endless spring. Bordered by Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua, Honduras has a 100-mile southern coast that is washed by the Pacific, and a 500-mile Caribbean Sea coastline — the nation includes islands off both coasts. While the country is approximately the same size as the state of Tennessee, the current population of Honduras is less than that of New York City, and much of the land here remains pristine and wild. The color palette tends toward the green of tropical and rainforest foliage, and the blue of sea and sky.
This makes Honduras a favorite with many travelers whose focus is ecology, adventure and culture. That includes dive travelers, and for divers, the focal point of Honduras is the Islas de la Bahia or, as they are known locally, the Bay Islands. Most Bay Islanders use English as their primary language, even though Spanish is the official language.
The three principal Bay Islands — Roatán, Utila and Guanaja — are surrounded by the second-largest coral-reef system in the world, and Cayos Cochinos (the Hog Cays) is a sparsely populated marine reserve. Bay Islanders are friendly and helpful by nature, and the lifestyle here is laid-back tropical. For many divers, this is a destination that they return to year after year.
The easy accessibility of mainland Honduras makes this country an ideal “two-in-one” vacation. Travelers can pair a week of diving with a week exploring the mainland: shooting the rapids on the raging Río Cangrejal, flying through the rainforest canopy on a zip line, or simply experiencing a place where all the elements of nature are in perfect balance.
Beautiful, natural and inviting, Honduras is the antidote to schedules and stress — a whole nation of tranquility, easily accessible in a single morning’s travel.
Accommodations: A list of lodging and resorts by location at letsgohonduras.com under “Hotels”