Honduras doesn’t quite receive the credit it deserves. It is often hurried through or avoided completely by travellers. However, the country is a vibrant destination, with many beautiful places worth visiting.
Recovering from a decade of terrible violence, Honduras is still facing many challenges, but things are slowly and surely turning to the positive. Things to see in Honduras include many national parks with abundant flora and fauna, ancient Mayan ruins, pristine bays and beaches, remote islands, and some of the best diving spots in the world. The traditional food served by locals is also unforgettable.
Honduras is one of the cheapest countries in Central America and although it is recommended to keep safety precautions in mind, especially when in the big cities, it is worth discovering. If you’re planning a trip here, keep reading for some fun things to do in Honduras.
1. Relax in the Luna Jaguar Hot Springs
This natural spa is located an hour outside of the city Copan. Getting here can sometimes be a small adventure in itself, as the roads are mainly dirt roads and lead through the mountains.
The springs comprise a couple of natural pools, filled by volcanically heated water. The pools have different temperatures, and the higher up you go, the warmer they get. There is even a pedicure pond, with its floor covered in polished stones! In one of the pools, you can sit under a stream of water that will free your muscles from tension.
A visit here is very relaxing and especially recommended after hiking or long trips on a bus.
Luna Jaguar Hot Springs
Address: 22 km (13.6 mi) from Copan Ruinas, Copan, Honduras
2. Visit Honduras' largest natural lake: Lake Yojoa
Halfway between Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula, you will find Lake Yojoa, one of the most beautiful places in Honduras. This region has an excellent climate and is home to many attractions. There are around 50 restaurants directly on the shore, and you will surely taste some delicious fresh sea bass here!
Visit coffee plantations or a micro brewery, relax in the hot springs, explore the nearby caves, or go for a hike to the Pulhapanzak Waterfalls. This peaceful region is also a great spot to indulge in bird watching, and you can find ancient ruins of the Lenca in Los Naranjos Eco Archaeological Park.
Address: Lake Yojoa, Honduras
Website: Lake Yojoa
3. Go for walks in Jeannette Kawas National Park
Located on Honduras’ north coast, this national park is one of the most scenic in the country. With its rocky beaches, dense mangrove forests, pristine beaches with white sand, and coral reef lagoons, this park is a stunning experience. The park is divided into two zones: Laguna de los Micos and Punta Sal Peninsula.
Laguna de los Micos is the second largest lagoon in the country, and is also a hot spot for birdwatchers, especially from October throughout January.
Punta Sal Peninsula is home to many beautiful beaches with spectacularly transparent waters and big coral reefs. Here you can swim or fish. Also jaguars, howler monkeys, and boas inhabit the peninsula - it is a true paradise for nature lovers! If you don’t know where to visit in Honduras, join a guided tour to this park.
Jeannette Kawas National Park
Address: Tela, Honduras
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4. Explore the Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve
This Biosphere Reserve is home to some of the remains of tropical rainforest in Central America. It is inhabited by a great variety of wildlife, and more than 2,000 indigenous people call this place their home.
Situated in the Mosquitia region of the northeastern part of the country, Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve is the biggest protected area in Honduras. There are several ecosystems covered by the reserve — everything ranging from wetlands, coastal lowlands, savannas and coastal lagoons. More than 700 species of wildlife have been seen here, and more than 500 species of plants.
You won’t only find nature here: you will discover old cultural sites, dating back many thousands of years, as well living cultures of indigenous communities.
Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve
Address: Northeastern Honduras
Website: Plátano Biosphere Reserve
5. Visit Honduras' diving mecca: Roatán
One of the best places to visit in Honduras, Roatán attracts many divers from all around the world. Its entire coastline is covered by an incredible coral reef, home to tropical fish. This is a dream coming true for divers and snorkelers!
The island’s pristine white sand beaches encourage you to stay for a while. The mountainous inner parts of Roatán are perfect to take some trips into the remote areas.
Roatán is home to a growing number of accommodation options, ranging from cheap backpacker hostels to resort hotels.
Address: Roatán, Honduras
6. Discover old Mayan sites at Copán Ruinas
This UNESCO World Heritage site is considered one of the most spectacular cities of the ancient Mayans and a popular tourist attraction in Honduras. The ruins complex is home to impressive stone temples, altars, and you can even see hieroglyphs.
The complex was built between 400 and 800 A.D., but it wasn’t until the last half of the 20th century that excavations started. More and more of this old and abandoned city are still being discovered.
Address: Copán Ruinas, Copán Department, Honduras
Website: Copán Ruinas
7. Enjoy beautiful beaches at the Cayos Cochinos archipelago
The Cayos Cochinos archipelago is becoming more and more popular among day trippers, and this for a good reason. Just like Roatan, the islands are home to stunning beaches and are surrounded by impressive coral reefs. On the mainland, you can find blue-green mountains that invite hikes and walks through natural beauty and wilderness.
The islands have been declared a Marine Protected Area, which means that tourism is strictly regulated in order to protect the beauty of mainland, shore, water, and reef.
Cayos Cochinos archipelago
Address: Cayos Cochinos archipelago
8. Check out the remote Swan Islands
Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing
Made of three uninhabited islands over 93 miles (150 kilometers) off the coastline of Honduras, the Swan Islands are composed of Great Swan Island, Little Swan Island, and Booby Cay. The reefs around this island are home to a diverse number of species. Brave adventurers may attempt to charter a boat and go diving, but do take note that the waters here are full of sharks. Once a place that hid pirates, these islands are now completely remote.
9. See the mysterious Cave of the Glowing Skulls
Don’t let the name scare you off - Cave of the Glowing Skulls isn’t actually a cave filled with skulls, although there are human skeletal remains inside. It’s just a clever way to describe the way the light hits the bones, but the site is also known as Talgua Caves. The mystery behind these remains are still unsolved, so if you’re looking for a fascinating activity in Honduras, this is certainly a great option.
Cave of the Glowing Skulls
Address: Boulevard Las Acacias, Olancho Valley, Honduras
Opening hours: 9am - 5pm (daily)
10. Join a guided tour of Lancetilla Botanical Garden & Research Center
Fans of botanical gardens will be happy to know that Honduras is home to one of the largest in the world. Located on the coastal town of Tela and taking up over 4,150 acres (1,680 hectares), these gardens contain 1,200 species of plants, including exotic flora and many fruit trees, as well as hundreds of bird species. Whether you’re a plantsman or just an average tourist, you’ll enjoy a visit here.
Lancetilla Botanical Garden & Research Center
Address: Apartado Postal 49, Tela, 00000 Honduras
Central America's gem
Simply put, don’t skip Honduras on your trip through Central America. The country is underrated due to its bad reputation in terms of safety, but there is so much to do see and do here. This country is a must-visit and should be on top of your list, especially if you love nature and the outdoors. These things to do in Honduras promise you fun times ahead.
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