Honduras is at the tip of the vast Mesoamerican barrier reef system (the second biggest barrier reef after Australia’s, and the largest in the northern hemisphere), which runs along more than 600 miles (1000km) of the coasts of Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Honduras.
Snorkeling can be done all along the continental coast of the country, particularly in Hog Keys (accessible from La Ceiba), or in the Parque Nacional Punta Sal (accessible from Tela).
But to explore the best snorkeling spots in Honduras, you should head for the Islas de la Bahia (Roatan, Utila and Guanaja, often called the Bay Islands), between 15 and 30 miles to the north of the country.
It is reckoned that over 400 species of fish and 70 species of coral inhabit the Islas de la Bahia reefs.
While there is top quality snorkeling on Utila and Guanaja, Roatan is still the must for snorkelers in Honduras and one of the best destinations in all the Caribbean.
This island, edged by a breathtaking and wonderfully preserved coral reef, in calm, crystal-clear waters, will bring you world-class snorkeling experiences, particularly at West Bay.
The island of Utila is famous for its whale sharks, on the other hand, with many coming to the coasts between March and May.
The climate on the Caribbean coast of Honduras and the Islas de la Bahia is of the humid tropical type. Snorkeling is possible all year-round, except very occasionally when the weather and sea conditions don’t permit it.
The three months of the rainy season (from October to December) account for as much precipitation as the other nine other months put together (January to September, the dry season).
The rainy season is less suited to snorkeling since the wind makes sea conditions dangerous (waves). March, April, and May are reckoned to be the best months to visit the Caribbean coast of Honduras and its islands.
December and January are the coolest months of the year (about 77°F/25°C), and July and August are the warmest (an average of almost 30°). The water temperature is between 79 and 86°F (26 and 30°C) all through the year, with a peak in August-September.
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Frequently sighted on West Bay and Lighthouse Point reef drop offs
Common on most of reef spots; often seen at West Bay
Large colonies at Starfish Alley; also found in West End seagrass beds
Occasionally found on West Bay reef drop off
On all spots, generally in large schools
On all spots
On all spots, but uncommon
Vibrant coral reef with sea turtles and lots of fish
Level: Free shore access
Shallow lagoon with coral and reef fish
Shallow seagrass meadows with cushion starfish
Fringing reef and seagrass beds
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