With a long stretch of Caribbean coastline, the enticing blue sea with its enigmatic underwater life certainly provides a host of things to do in Honduras. Enjoying the sandy beaches or submerging into the water to experience the aquatic life in all its glory is possible from both the mainland and the outlying islands. The reef is best seen from the Bay Islands, which provide the closest access. A trip to the largest lake in Honduras also offers water-based activities, as fishing and boating trips are popular.

Adventures on land are also certainly not to be missed either, and it’s possible to take an organized trek into Central America’s largest tropical rainforest, which is a wildlife hotspot. There are several other rainforests in Honduras, both in the low lying Caribbean region and further inland. When rising into the highlands these take the form of “cloud forests” and the vegetation and animals differ from its coastal counterparts. If you continue climbing at altitude you can reach the summit of the tallest mountain in Honduras.

Honduras hosts the largest barrier reef in the Caribbean Sea, and the second largest in the world. Scuba diving is a popular way to explore the wonderment of the underwater world, and many operators are ready to take you. West Bay Divers based on the island of Roatan offer courses in PADI instruction. Or, if you are an experienced and licensed already you can join one of their excursions. Another great dive location in the Bay of Islands is Utila where you can arrange a dive plus any necessary instruction with Deep Blue Utila also has accommodation options for all-inclusive dive trips.

If full PADI certification is not for you, snorkeling in the Caribbean is another good way to experience the reef. Contact Paya Bay resort in Roatan Island for equipment rental and transportation to the best snorkeling spots in Honduras, such as the well-known Pigeon Cay. The resort also offers sea-kayaking and sea fishing excursions.

Lake Yojoa, the largest in Honduras, also offers notable water sport activities. You can rent a boat from Honduyate Marina and go sailing. They also have fishing boats, or you can join one of their pre-arranged trips to catch black bass, amongst other species. For a more leisurely float, you can rent a rowboat from D&D Brewery.

You will need at least four days to trek the jungle at Rio Platano Biosphere reserve, since it is in a remote spot, which has much to do with its stellar preservation efforts. If you arrange a trip with Coco Tours, they will pick you up from La Ceiba in a private plane. From here you will hike for four to seven days (depending on the tour) through the jungle, taking in native flora and fauna with an experienced guide, reaching the final destination at the mouth of the Platano River after a combination of walking and boat travel. All accommodation along the way is provided in purpose-built lodges in specially designated areas of the park.

Another way to experience Rio Platano is to take a rafting trip through rainforest. La Moskitia Ecoaventuras offers an all-inclusive raft tour which takes 10-14 days. For a shorter journey, there are half-day excursions on the Cangrejal River, which depart from La Ceiba. The trip takes you on class III and IV rapids, and the company provides full instruction with a guide accompanying the six person boats.

There are many other biodiversity hotspots in Honduras and places to hike in cloud forests. Garifuna Tours, based in Tela, arranges trips to mountainous jungle parks, including Pico Bonito, Cuero y Salado and Cayos Cochinos. Along your ascent, the guide will point out plant species endemic to the rainforest, as well as make rest-stops at beautiful spots such as waterfalls.