Roatan Travel Guide

Roatan is the largest and most developed of the Bay Islands. Divers and snorkelers come from all over the world to visit the warm and clear waters and coral reefs teeming with bright tropical fish.

There’s more to explore on this island than the underwater life, including the lush and green mountainous interior and the remote wilderness of the east part of the island.

Roatan Island

Cruise PortYes. Some of the cruise lines that stop in Roatan include Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, Celebrity Cruises, Princess Cruises, Costa Cruise Lines, Oceania Cruises.

Nearest AirportThe main airport in Roatan is Juan Manuel Galvez International Airport. There are several US airlines that offer flights to Roatan from cities including Houston, Atlanta, Miami, Orlando, Chicago, Toronto, Dallas, New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. 

Prime Attractions

  • Canopy Zip Lines - Soar over the jungle for the thrill of a lifetime.
  • Best West Bay Beach - This beach offers clear and shallow water that is perfect for snorkeling. It was ranked among the 25 Best Beaches in the World by Tripadvisor in their Traveler’s Choice Awards 2015.
  • Cusuco National Park - Jungle waterfall treks, night hikes and much more are available here.

Scenic Experience

  • Horseback Riding -  Take an unforgettable ride along the hills at West Bay or between Calabash Bight and Paya Bay on the south side of the island.
  • Swimming With Dolphins - You can make this bucket list dream come true at Anthony’s Key Resort.

Natural Wonders

  • Blue Harbor Tropical Arboretum - Explore this amazing tropical wilderness and fruit orchard - a great place for bird watchers.
  • The Butterfly Farm - This fun attraction is home to hundreds of colorful butterflies as well as parrots, toucans and hummingbirds.
  • The Iguana Farm - This attraction is home to over 3,000 iguanas that you can touch and photograph.

History and Culture

  • Roatan Museum - Recognized as one of the best small museums in Central America, the Roatan Museum offers archeological discoveries from all over the Bay Islands.

Cuisine (Dining Choices)

  • Ronny’s Barefeet Beachfront Bar (Caribbean) - This laid back and welcoming seaside joint is a great place to eat superb seafood - as grilled honey basted lobster, for instance - with your feet in the sand.
  • Hole in the Wall Floating Restaurant (Caribbean, Seafood) - A local favorite, the Hole in the Wall Floating Restaurant is only accessible via a boat ride through a mangrove forest. Check out the all-you-can-eat barbeques on Fridays and Sundays.
  • Roatan Oasis (French, International) - Treat yourself to a special meal at this luxurious restaurant, which offers a constantly rotating menu of cuisine made with fresh locally sourced ingredients.

Travel Notes

Who is it for:

  • Birdwatchers - Many beautiful species can be seen in the jungles here.
  • Nature Lovers - There are abundant opportunities for spotting wildlife both above and below the water.
  • Divers - People come from all over the world to learn to dive in the clear tropical waters.

Best Time to Visit Jamaica: December - March

Cheapest Time to Visit Jamaica: April - November

Health and Safety Information

  • If you are hiking in the outdoors be prepared to encounter spiders, snakes, scorpions and other creepy crawlies.
  • When choosing a taxi, make sure that it has a radio dispatched walkie talkie, which is an indication that the cab is legitimate.
  • The coffee is amazing here, especially the brand Welches.

Quick Facts

  • LanguageSpanish is the official language.
  • Currency: Either Lempiras or US dollars.
  • Electricity and outlets: The power on the island is 120 V 60 Hz, but visitors are advised to use filters for their electronics as the power here can cause damage.
  • Passport and Immigration: Citizens of most Western countries do not need a visa. There is a $3 US fee for all citizens of non-Central American countries when entering via land.
  • Drinking Water: The water might be safe to drink at some of the high end resorts that have their own supply, but visitors are advised to limit their intake to bottled water.
  • Time zone: Central Time Zone GMT -6:00  - One hour behind New York.

Interesting Facts

  • There are no high rise buildings on Roatan because of regulations that limit construction to three stories.
  • The town of Coxen Hole is named after the pirate Captain John Coxen.
  • Although the island is only 30 miles long and three miles wide, there are more than 400 taxis.

 

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