Stuck between Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua, Honduras is, even today, relatively unknown to divers. This beautiful country is yet a wonderful destination for a diving trip. Of particular interest to divers around the world is its archipelago in the Caribbean Sea, which stretches about 48 kilometers from west to east along the northern coast of Honduras. Islas de las Bahia the islands of the bay. Composed of seven islands and 50 islets, it stretches for 115 kilometers in the form of an arc that points to the northeast. The main islands have names that are, in themselves, beautiful invitations to travel: Roatan, Guanaja, Utila, Cayos Conchinos.
Where to go for diving in Honduras?
As you can see, most of the dives are around the archipelago of Islas de las Bahia, which together with Mexico and Belize is part of the second largest barrier reef in the world, after Australia.
Diving trip to Roatan
Of an area of 53 kilometers long and five kilometers wide, Roatan is the largest island of the archipelago. Roatan is also the most populated of the three main islands offering the most opportunities in terms of accommodation and diving centers. The island is known for its sumptuous beaches, wrecks, numerous dive sites and dolphin colony. There are more than 100 dive sites around the island, forty of which are in the West in the Roatan Marine Park. Underwater, the particularity of Roatan is materialized by magnificent coral formations including large canyons, caves or deep caves. Do not miss the dive spots of Dolphin Den, Mary’s Place, Morat Wall but also the impressive wrecks of El Aguila, Odyssey Wreck and Prince Albert Wreck. Finally, Roatan is an ideal place to cross eagle rays, nurse sharks or turtles.
Diving holidays in Utila
Just 13 kilometers long and five kilometers wide, Utila is a fairly flat island with only a population of 4,000, most of which is located at the eastern end of the island. As far as you can immediately tell, Utila is the favorite island for backpackers looking for discounted dive services. The many diving clubs that have been established on the island offer very attractive prices from a beginner diving level to becoming a diving instructor.
Divers are seduced by its slower pace and more relaxed atmosphere than in Roatan, as well as by its magnificent dive sites, among the most beautiful in the Caribbean.
One of the peculiarities of the Isle of Utila is to be on the whale shark migration route. It is not uncommon to see them during your dives. Possible all year, but mostly from March to May or August to October off the North Shore.
Accessible only by boat, diving spots are quite similar to those of Roatan. Expect to find drop offs and abrupt underwater walls on the northern part and fringing reefs, canyons and underwater caves on the southern part. Offshore, one can dive on beautiful submerged pinnacles. Do not miss the Black Hills dive sites, the Aquarium and Haliburton.
Diving in Guanaja
Guanaja or Isla de Pinos the island of pines, is an island with more hilly terrain than that of its sisters. Its summit Michael Rock culminates at an altitude of 411 meters. With an area of about 18 kilometers long by 6 kilometers wide, Guanaja is located further east in the archipelago. This island, even though it has about 8,000 inhabitants, is the least developed and the most difficult of access for divers. With only a small road connecting the cities of Mangrove Bight and Savannah Blue, most trips are by boat. These wilder features make it a place worth visiting. The reefs are particularly well preserved and abound in life. The dive sites offer a wide variety of scenery with canyons, vertiginous drop offs, the deepest down to 1,829 meters, wrecks, caves and, of course, beautiful coral reefs. You cannot miss the dive spots of Mestizo Reef, Vertigo, Michael’s Rock Reef or Jim’s Silverlode and The Jado Trader.
When should I go diving?
Honduras has a warm tropical climate, with little temperature variation between winter and summer. It is nevertheless better to avoid the rainiest months between October and January.
Visibility is often excellent in Honduras, from 30 to 45 meters. However, it is better to avoid the rainy season if you do not want to have a lower visibility.
The currents are not usually very strong. It is best, however, to check with your on-site diving club.
Diving Levels: Honduras allows divers of all levels to indulge in the pleasures of their favorite activities. The variety of diving sites will allow novice divers to enjoy specialties in good conditions.
Access: Most dives are from a boat, but diving spots are usually close to the shore.
What to see when diving in Honduras?
Located on the Mesoamerican coral reef, the waters around the Bay Islands are packed with vibrant coral, colorful tropical fish. More than 300 species have been recorded, including pelagic fish such as whale sharks especially at Utila, hammerhead sharks, manta rays, sea turtles, barracuda and bigeye jacks. Other iconic species of the Caribbean are present in these waters: groupers, rays, angel fish, butterfly fish, surgeon fish, gorets, parrot fish, yellow-tailed snappers, octopus, lobsters, crabs and moray eels.
Finally, in Roatan, a colony of Atlantic dolphins has taken up residence in Anthony’s Key’s lagoon.