2nd largest barrier reef in the world
2 to 3 hours gets you here from Houston, Atlanta, Miami or San Salvador
4 beautiful islands to enjoy
4 hours under sail gets you from one island to the next
Pristine coral reefs, big variety of fishes & dramatic coral walls full of color
Roatan and the Bay Islands are blessed with consistent trade winds from the east that provide excellent sailing conditions.
The islands are close enough together to be able to sail from one to the next easily in good weather conditions. The reefs here are part of the Mesoamerican barrier reef system which starts in Belize and is the 2nd largest reef in the world after the Australian Great Barrier Reef. The variety of topography will give you a chance to sample caves, tunnels, canyons, towering pinnacles and endless healthy reefs. Visibility is typically 80 feet or more & can be well over 100 feet in summer. The climate is wonderful, water temperatures range from 78F in the coldest months of January & February to 84F in July through September. Air temperatures see highs in the low 80s in winter and in the high 80s to 90F in summer, with August & September being the most humid times of year. The rainy season typically runs October through December and sometimes into January, by November the island is a lush, green, tropical paradise.
There are few places if any in the Caribbean where the diving is as affordable and easy as the Bay Islands. Almost all of the diving is boat dives to sites within 10 minutes of your dive operator. There are over 120 dive sites with moorings around Roatan alone & any of the dive operations have 20 to 30 sites within a short boat trip. There is a wide variety of accommodations available, from hostels to all-inclusive high-end resorts to boutique hotels & B&B’s. There are also over 40 dive operators in the Bay Islands, both independents & attached to resorts, and you can find pretty much any size & type that you like.
In addition to our charter services, we work with a number of hotels, B&B’s and boutique inns as well as property managers that have private villas & condos and can recommend properties ranging from large North American style hotels, small local hotels, remote eco-resorts, to upscale boutique inns for the land based portion of your trip. If you would like some recommendations just let us know what type of accommodations you prefer and whether you would like something away from it all or in the middle of the action and we would be pleased to help out. We also know pretty much all of the dive operators & depending on where you decide to stay we can make recommendations for good dive shops.
As far as diving is concerned, the diving in all of the Bay Islands is amongst the best in the Caribbean and it is different in each of the islands. It also varies depending on the area of each individual island. On Roatan the west & northwest area including the West End and Sandy Bay areas are the most popular, primarily due to the close proximity of resorts and services. The south shore around French Harbor and towards Oak Ridge is less busy and has more dramatic diving. The east end of the island from Port Royal east is the least visited and has the most pristine reefs, however it is very remote, most of it is only accessible by boat and there are few facilities. This is spectacular diving for travelers that really want to get away from it all.
The Bay Islands are not really known for large marine life, other than the whale sharks of course. Most divers come for the stunning coral reefs & the fish life, which is incredible at the right dive sites, at times fish totally surrounding us. The whale sharks visit Roatan mostly in March through July & are often sighted daily off both the south & north shores, Utila has even more of them than Roatan with the peak months there being April & May. The reefs are very healthy and the coral off the south shore of Roatan is outstanding, dramatic walls full of color that plunge from 30 feet to over 140, with overhangs, swim throughs, canyons and chimneys. The Bay Island’s reputation is built on the vibrancy of its coral reefs & they are the main reason divers come here.
There are few vacation destinations that have the amazing scenery, outstanding diving, variety of activities, and range of accommodations from backpackers’ hostels to high-end boutique inns that the Bay Islands have to offer. Roatan is also very easy to get to with its own international airport that has daily flights direct from Houston, Texas, only 2 ½ hours away, as well as direct flights from Miami, Dallas, and Atlanta several times each week. United, American, Delta and Taca all fly to Roatan on regularly scheduled flights every week and there are a number of charter operators that fly weekly during the peak tourist season from December through May.
To see more detailed information on the various islands please <CLICK HERE> to go to our Destinations page.