Located approximately 35 miles north of Honduras in the Caribbean, Roatan is the largest of the Bay Islands group. Plenty of great snorkeling and diving is found at the coral reefs off Roatan's coast.
What to do in Coxen Hole, Roatan, Bay Islands, HondurasRoatan has some of the best snorkeling and scuba diving in the world. It’s close proximity to the “Mesoamerican Barrier Reef” (the second largest in the world next to the Great Barrier Reef), makes it a very popular destination for those wanting underwater exploration. If you’d prefer to stay above water, you can still take in the pristine beaches and amazing bays. You’ll find an abundance of water sports to choose from. For a calmer experience, you can explore the local wildlife or take in the island culture.
FishingIf you’re an angler, don’t miss this opportunity to take advantage of some of the best fishing in the world. Lurking just under your boat is a variety of popular game including Marlin, Tuna and Wahoo (appropriately named, because that’s what you’re going to shout when hooking one of those beasts).
Scuba Diving & SnorkelingIt’s not often you get to dive the second largest reef in the world. We advise you take advantage of this underwater playground. You’ll find many tours offering access to the most scenic areas of the Mesoamerian Barrier Reef.
Water SportsThe calm bays, warm waters, and white-sand beaches make for a great opportunity to rent some toys and to explore. Hop on a paddle board, jet ski, kayak, horse, para-sail, or other fun option to see as much of the island as you can.
WildlifeRoatan has some of the funnest tropical animals you can imagine. Think of your three top favorites first before we tell you what to expect. Ready? Did you think “sloths, monkeys and parrots?” If not, you’re crazy. But, that’s what you’ll find at Daniel Johnson’s Monkey and Sloth Hangout. If you’re more into “majestic” than funny, consider the Butterfly farm.
Shopping in Coxen Hole, Roatan, Bay Islands, HondurasYour ship will anchor in one of two cruise ports located on Roatan’s southern coast: Coxen Hole or Mahogany Bay. Both provide limited retail activity in their immediate surrounding areas. The island is less known for its shopping than it’s magnificent beaches, so you may want to make your bigger purchases at other port destinations. Since “shopping” isn’t a major attraction to Roatan, you’ll also find cheaper prices. Expect to pick up souvenirs (wood carvings, leather, pottery, etc) for very little money. Bartering is expected too, so don’t be shy to ask for 50% off the listed price. Here are a couple options if you’d like to pick up a thing or two while in Roatan.
Main Street in West EndHere you’ll find the most dense collection of retail shops on the island. This is where to go to peruse for knick knacks, souvenirs, and keepsakes. It’s nearby the West Bay Beaches, so you could make a day of beaching then shopping if that sounds like your fancy.
Mahogany Bay Cruise PortBuilt by Carnival in 2009, they didn’t forget to include the touristy shopping options in this cruise port. When getting off your ship (unless docking in Coxen Hole), here you’ll find jewelry options and retailers selling souvenirs. It’s fine for a “last-minute” gift item, but don’t expect anything profoundly authentic here.
Beaches in Coxen Hole, Roatan, Bay Islands, HondurasWhile Roatan has many beach options among its island shoreline, many aren't very inviting given their rocky or mangrove-covered terrain. Fortunately, you have several options for beautiful, white-sand beaches with all the amenities you'll need. Below are our best options for beaches near Roatan cruise port.
Half Moon Bay BeachAnother of Roatan’s most popular beaches, Half Moon Bay offers great snorkeling, diving, kayaking, floating docks, beachside bars, and more. It also offers phenomenal sunsets in that it’s located on the west side of the island. There’s no fee to access this beach.
Camp Bay BeachMuch less popular with cruise passengers is Camp Bay Beach. Located on the north coast, you’ll find this two-mile stretch completely undeveloped and removed from the tourism trap. It’s free to access this beach other than the taxi cost to get there. There are no facilities, so bring food and don’t expect restrooms.
West Bay BeachWest Bay Beach is Roatan’s most popular beach for cruise passengers. Not surprisingly, it’s located on the west side of the island and offers “endless powdery white sand and dazzling blue water.” Within West Bay Beach, Tatyana Beach is very popular drop-off point. From the beach to the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef is just 70 feet you have to swim. Just make sure to wait 30 minutes after eating. The entrance fee to access the beach is $10 per person and includes a chair or drink and access to bathrooms and changing rooms.
Northern Coast Secluded BeachesTo get away from the crowds, head to the northern coast of the island to find quieter beaches. The southern coast is rocky and not ideal for beach getaways, so stay north. You can hire a cab driver to find you a secluded spot for the day. You’ll want to agree on an upfront payment and make sure he stays for the day. It’ll run roughly $100 for the day for four passengers.
Best cruise excursions in Coxen Hole, Roatan, Bay Islands, HondurasWe've analyzed tens of thousands of cruise tours to find your ideal attraction while in port. Based on these reviews, here are the Best Cruise Excursions in Coxen Hole, Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras
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Coxen Hole, Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras Cruise Excursions
Coxen Hole, Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras cruise port map