Honduras is branded as a corrupt and dangerous country, with San Pedro currently ranking as number 1 most dangerous city in the world (apparently). We never went to San Pedro, so we can't comment on that particular place, but everywhere we went in Honduras felt safe and we found the people to be more helpful and trusting than any other of Central American countries we visited. We heard bad comments regarding the bus system, but as far as doing this country in your own vehicle, it seems to be the better travelling option.
Whilst Spanish is the ruling language here, we found English was widely spoken, particularly along the coast. We spoke to more Brits in Utila than anywhere else we have been so far on this trip, so it's very backpacker focused.
What's Utila like? Even though it has the 'Carribean' tag, it fails to deliver on the paradise beach front, is overrun with tuk tuks and motorbikes, and just like NYC, it never sleeps, so tranquil it is not. However, we never branched out of Utila town (due to lack of time), so we can't say much about the rest of the island, except what we've been told.
It's simply summarised as a cheap diving course location and shot-taking party island. If that's not your scene, I wouldn't bother; if it is, go knock yourself out. People say you come to Utila and never want to leave, but for us, it didn't have that effect. We got bored fairly quickly, the foods options were narrowing by the fourth day, and the Mosquitos were ruthless.
Ideally, we would've liked another week in Honduras to explore around the lake with hikes in the cloud forrest and tubing down the river, obviously go to Roatan and some of the islands off the coast (eg Cayos Cochinos), but with the Corn island flights in Nicaragua booked, we were under time constraints. Plus, we would've needed a bigger budget eg the submarine trips in Roatan are priced FROM $500usd pp. I'm sure we'll be back...
- Honduras people - finally we don't feel ripped off with Gringo prices, harassed for money, shown places for a fee, etc. Hondurans are by far the most helpful people we have met so far.
Copan Ruins - purely for the sculptures. Well preserved.
Any of the hot springs. They were all well maintained and set amongst beautiful scenery.
Horse riding through coffee plantations and through the Copan mountains.
White water rafting down Rio Cangrejal. Epic grade V and IVs.
Cheap dive courses and for us personally finishing the PADI Rescue Course.
Guifiti jungle juice ;-). You've not tasted Honduras until you've had this technically illegal concoction.
D&D brewery - homemade beers and burgers. What's not to like?! You could spend a week here doing all the activities around the lake and hikes up the mountains.
- Gracias - only go to this town if you are going that way. It's not worth the detour otherwise.
Iguana sanctuary in Utila. It's disappointing...apart the Swampy's story.
Conditions of the roads in the north, particularly off the main highway.
Saying goodbye to Gwyn's moustache. He actually looks Amish now!
The occasional rain storms in Utila.
Police checks along the highways. In fairness we didn't get stopped that much, but it's still a pain.
Gwyn getting a dodgy stomach in Utila. Apparently, it's the standard first week induction to the island...