Anyone can learn to dive, and Honduras is one of the best places in the world to learn. If you are not yet certified and have little travel time left, you can get certified at home. You can do it for a fraction of the price in the turquoise waters of the Caribbean, surrounded by multi-colored fish. Safe, high-quality equipment is available for rent at resorts throughout the Bay Islands.
If you have your own gear, bring it, but leave the heavy stuff down. First-class instruction in multiple languages has made the Bay Islands a “certification destination” for divers around the world. For advanced divers, courses in underwater photography, cave diving, and instructor-led training are available.
Today, scuba diving in Honduras is probably the single most important attraction for environmentally oriented tourism. Diving is not always considered an “ecotourism” activity, but this concept can be lost over time, as divers develop a greater environmental awareness.
Reefs are correctly called “the tropical forests of the sea,” and are home to more than 4,000 different species of fish and thousands of species of plants and animals. 2% of all marine life depends on coral reefs for their survival.
Flora and fauna
The flora and fauna of reef systems contain countless unstudied chemicals with great potential for medicinal use, while the physical mass of reefs protects beaches and coasts from erosion. However, reefs are being destroyed in all parts of the world. Some believe that up to 70 coral of the planet will disappear in 20 to 40 years.
In Honduras, however, the reefs are pristine, the water is crystal clear, the biodiversity and the beauty of the flora and fauna are unsurpassed. Swim through canyons of brain coral, elkhorn, lettuce, star, and pillar. Float alongside barrel, rope and glass sponges, sea fans and long-to-mention marine species.
Although there is some coral along the shores and good diving opportunities out of Tela and elsewhere, there is no reason not to dive anywhere other than the Bay Islands. For those who wish to experience fish and coral without having to get certified, “dive resorts” allow you to experience it, by diving alongside an instructor in beautiful shallow waters. Snorkelling on the surface is fun too.
How to get?
To get to Honduras there are a large number of direct flights from the United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe and Central America. Many flights go to San Pedro Sula, Tegucigalpa and Roatán via Miami with connection to other cities in Honduras.
If you’ve always wanted to learn to dive, don’t put it aside. It is easy. Like driving a car, the rules to follow are simple. Do not dive the day you fly in or the day you leave, do not dive too deep or for a long time, and be sure to descend and ascend slowly. Review the safety precautions before diving. Although the chance of decompression is extremely remote, there is a NOAA certified compression chamber on Roatan, just in case.
Instead of decompression, your ears are more likely to hurt. Sometimes it is difficult to adapt the pressure of the inner ear to the pressure change of the deep water, especially if your nose has lags from the cold that you brought with you from colder climates.
If you think your sinuses are going to be congested, be sure to use a long-lasting decongestant, such as Sudafed 12 Hour. Short-lived decongestants can lose their effect in the middle of diving.