Recommend Jan 2018 - 70

HONDURAS

ROATAN
Moored 30 miles off mainland Honduras, this largest of the Bay
Islands-which include Utila and Guanaja-ROATAN is a magnet
for scuba divers and snorkelers, drawn to the marine life along the
second longest barrier reef in the world. However, an influx of cruise
ships on Roatan has added additional attractions such as adventure
parks and ziplines.
SEE/DO: Thanks to the presence of the barrier reef, the island draws
both beginner and expert divers and snorkelers to its wondrous
marine work of plummeting walls, crevices and caverns. Divers may
also want to take a boat to Utila and swim with the whale sharks
that gather year-round, most intensively March to May and August
to October. Other water-bound pursuits on Roatan include sailing,
sea kayaking and deep-sea fishing. Activities on land include visiting
Arch's Iguana and Marine Park, Carambola Gardens and the
Roatan Butterfly Garden, and there are four companies with
canopy/zipline tours on the island. One of the best experiences on
Roatan is attending a Dolphin Encounter at Anthony's
Key Resort.
SIGNATURE EVENT: The Garifuna people commemorate their
arrival in Roatan on April 12; catch the celebrations at Punta Corda
on the north coast; another Garifuna Festival is held at the seaside
village of Baja Mar: July 9-24, with the all-night dance competition
usually on July 16.
STAY: Always a good bet is The Resort at Palmetto Bay,
accommodating guests in beachfront, Balinese-style villas and
offering diving just offshore, as well as fishing, sailing, and kayaking,
or Parrot Tree Beach Resort with its balconied villas, pool and
private beach.

Bird's-eye view of Roatan, the largest of Honduras' Bay Islands.

FASTFACTS
BEST TIME TO GO: On the mainland, November to May; on
Roatan, January to August
GETTING THERE: Delta flies from Atlanta to Roatan, San
Pedro Sula and Tegucigalpa
ENTRY DOCUMENTS: Valid passport
CURRENCY: Lempira (U.S. dollar freely accepted on Roatan)
INFORMATION PLEASE: Honduras Tourism Institute-
letsgohonduras.com

Exploring Copan, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

SAN PEDRO SULA
Located 150 miles north of the capital, SAN PEDRO SULA fills the role of export terminal for
industry and transportation hub to major points of interest in the country. The city offers a few
good hotels, Westernized malls, North American chain restaurants and a few good markets.
SEE/DO: This commercial capital of Honduras is also the nation's gateway to two of her
most important attractions: the majestic ruins of Copan and Roatan in the Bay Island. In the
city, don't miss the fine Anthropology and History Museum, which takes visitors from
pre-Columbian to modern times. Then plan to spend some time-two nights minimum-in
Copan Ruinas, the lively village gateway to Copan, often called the Paris of the Maya world
and declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO. Nowadays, you can enter the Rosalila and
Jaguar Tunnels. And while staying here, be sure to include a visit to the Macaw Mountain
Bird Park & Nature Reserve.
Nature abounds outside SAN PEDRO SULA: For world-class birdlife, head for Lago de
Yojoa, and also enjoy hiking to waterfalls, coffee estate visits, tubing and ziplining. Farther
north on the Caribbean are the towns La Ceiba and Tela, both departure points for visiting
Parque Nacional Jeannette Kawas, whose mangrove forests harbor monkeys galore
and hundreds of bird species, and the Lancetilla Botanical Gardens, one of the largest in
the world. Here, too, is Pico Bonito National Park, the pearl of the national park system,
offering excellent hiking and birding-400 species-joined by ocelots, tapirs, pumas,
deer and monkeys.
SIGNATURE EVENT: The largest of all Honduran festivals is the La Ceiba Carnival, known
as La Feria de San Isidro. Celebrants flock to town the week before the third Saturday in May.
STAY: In San Pedro Sula, the Real InterContinental is a good bet: for Copan, in Copan
Ruinas, the comfortable and classic Hotel Marina Copan, and outside town, the charming
and authentic Hacienda San Lucas. Outside La Ceiba, enjoy a stay in the wild at the ecoluxurious The Lodge at Pico Bonito, then get away from it all at Indura Beach & Golf
Resort near the beach town of Tela.
56


http://www.letsgohonduras.com

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