A tropical paradise in Central America, Honduras is renowned for its beauty, elegance and picturesque places. Its lush rainforests, majestic mountains and outstanding islands attract thousands of tourists to Honduras. It provides the perfect combination of Caribbean charm and a relaxed atmosphere ideal for indulging in several activities such as diving, snorkeling and swimming. Honduras also has some of the most intriguing Mayan sites, colonial villages and allow tourists to enjoy everything from exotic wildlife viewing to river rafting.
Let’s Look At The Top 10 Places To Visit In Honduras:
1. Roatan, Bay Islands
One of the most popular holiday destinations in Honduras, Roatan is the largest and most developed of the Bay Islands. The area is fringed with coral reefs and provides the perfect opportunity for diving as well as deep sea fishing.
A famous cruise ship port, its beautiful beaches are always thriving with travelers from all over the world.
West Bay Beach, the most renowned beach at Roatan is a top favourite, attracting tourists with its sheer beauty, palm lined beaches and crystal clear water. It also has a number of shops and restaurants. The Roatan Marine Park, Carambola Gardens, Roatan Museum and Blue Harbor Tropical Arboretum are some of the other attractions here.
Utila is a famous diving destination in the Caribbean. Renowned as a budget friendly destination in the Bay Islands, it is a 13 kilometer long island which is very popular among backpackers. It is one of those places that offer cheap diving courses and certify divers easily. As a result, visitors to Utila enjoy diving, swimming, snorkeling, kayaking and paddle-boarding. Apart from these, hiking and horse riding through the jungles are other activities that can be pursued.
Known for its outstanding series of portrait and stelae, Copan is a Mayan site located in western Honduras. It is a living example of the Mayan civilization and displays some of the most beautiful art works from ancient Mesoamerica. By the 5th century, it became an important Mayan site, accommodating over 20,000 people. However, it was abandoned a few centuries later. The Copan Ruinas Archaeological site is another great place where specimens from the Mayan civilization are found. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is very popular among tourists. The Museum of Mayan Sculpture is another place that you must visit.
4. La Tigra National Park
Located at an altitude of 2,270 meters, the unspoiled beauty of La Tigra National Park is evident in every nook and corner of this beautiful place. Home to a lush cloud forest, it has a large number of big mammals, a wide array of birds, monkeys, pumas and ocelots. The hiking trails through the forest take travelers to exotic places lined with orchids. It is one of the most visited places in Honduras and allow visitors to glimpse into the past of Honduras, when it thrived with forests that have now been depleted due to excessive logging.
5. Punta Sal
A great place to encounter the exotic wildlife of Honduras, Punta Sal is very popular among tourists. Its sandy beaches, vast mangroves, rainforests and coastal lagoons create an idyllic atmosphere that will completely soothe your senses. Its wide range of wildlife species consisting of different types of tropical birds, dolphins, sea turtles, crocodiles, manatees, boas and monkeys attract a lot of tourists. Besides, a traditional village with thatched huts provide visitors a glimpse of the local culture. However, Punta Sal was once a secluded place that was only visited by pirates looking for a remote place to hide.
6. Cayos Cochinos
Looking for a respite from the maddening crowd of Honduras? Move to Cayos Cochinos, a serene place consisting of two main islands along with a number of small cays. Its stunning beaches, picture perfect coasts and quiet villages create the perfect atmosphere for a chilled out vacation. The islands have no automobile service and hiking trails link beaches to human habitats. Panoramic views from the lighthouse in Cayos Cochinos must not be missed.
7. Lago de Yojoa
The largest natural lake in Honduras, Lago de Yojoa offers plenty of activities for travelers. A treat for birdwatchers, this area is inhabited by over 480 species of birds including northern jacanas, whistling ducks and crakes. The hot springs located near the lake are also favourite spots for tourists. Hikes to adjacent waterfalls, exploring ancient Mayan ruins, visiting caves and touring coffee plantations interest a lot of travelers to this place.
8. Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve
The Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve is a huge swathe of low lying tropical rainforest. It has coastal lagoons, huge mangroves, peaceful beaches, awesome grasslands and a few patches of pine savannah.
Located in the Mosquito Coast, it was incorporated in the World Heritage in Danger list developed by UNESCO.
It is not only home to different species of animals such as scarlet macaws, howler monkeys, toucans, giant leatherback turtles and tapirs, its mountains are inhabited by several indigenous tribes. Various archaeological sites are also located within the reserve. Ecotourism companies offer guided tours of Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve and visitors can choose various adventurous activities or rafting trips down Rio Platano.
9. Lancetilla Botanical Gardens
The second largest tropical botanical garden in the world, Lancetilla Botanical Gardens are situated in a protected part of Central America’s wildlife corridor. The abundance of fruit trees have made the gardens perfect for over 200 species of tropical birds. Several beautiful trails along the garden can be used to explore this region. It is a great place for birdwatchers and also visitors looking for exotic orchids, mango trees and palms. The gardens were originally set up by the United Fruit Company to experiment the economic viability of different species of hardwood and fruit trees.
10. Rio Cangrejal
A hot spot for kayaking and rafting, Rio Cangrejal is perfect for adventure lovers. The gushing white water rapids, trailing past boulders strewn across its path offer adrenaline junkies an opportunity to experience the most thrilling acts. Guides are available for tours to this region and novices can also learn the tricks of kayaking and rafting from experienced trainers.