Considering that just off the coast of Roatan is the second largest coral reef in the world, the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, it’s little surprise that diving is such a popular activity around the Bay Island. The tremendous and economical diving has paved the way for cruise ship arrivals, plenty of Roatan hotels, boating companies and what’s arguably the strongest tourist infrastructure in the country. This article will concentrate on some of the best dive sites in the Honduras Bay Islands.
Enchanted Forest And Insidious Wall
As part of a larger reef with an offshore bank these two dive sites have a series of rolling reefs that are 70 to 80 feet underwater. There is a spirited and healthy sponge community that takes advantage of the active reefs and moving pelagic zones. Coral and grouper are also plentiful on these dives. Their distance offshore has made these dives relatively unexplored.
Mary’s Place is probably the most popular diving site off the Roatan coast. There are large deepwater sea fans, black corals and significant sponge populations. The waters teem with life and there are many crevices and canyons that create shelter for hidden populations. The sandy bottom drops from 140 to 200 feet while affording incredible views.
El Aguila is a 210 foot cargo ship that was intentionally sunk in 1997 into the sandy floor at 100 feet. With 20 years having gone by, the ship has become home to a healthy coat of coral, populations of eels, grouper, parrotfish and other species. Because the ship has been broken into three, you’re able to safely explore the innards of the wreck and the sealife it contains.
Mandy’s Eel Garden
Mandy’s Eel Garden is just offshore of West Bay and the large range of Roatan hotels. The dive is easily accessible, shallow and perfect for beginners. There are a wide variety of eel species and a vast array of other sea life including barracudas, rays, octopi, turtles and more. Because of the reef’s shallowness its colours are bright and vibrant.
Half Moon Bay Wall
If you want marine life, this is the dive you’ll need to make sure is on your list. The sloping wall creates a perfect habitat for fish of all sizes, colours and shapes. Sponges, sea fans and healthy coral populations make this sloping wall a popular dive.
Connie’s Dream is a slow and gently sloping drop off that features large thickets of purple and red tube sponges, vase sponges and massive fields of coral. There are deep channels and canyons that create a maze-like feeling.
Hole In The Wall
Hole In The Wall offers something for all diving levels. Its name is the result of long tunnel that starts at 40 feet and ends at 110 feet. Beginners are still able to enjoy the surrounding slope and wall whereas advanced divers can peer off into the abyss that goes down for thousands of feet. You’ll find turtles, several types of rays, king crab and possibly nurse sharks.
The Odyssey is an intentional shipwreck dating back to 2002. It is still intact and therefore requires more advanced navigational skills than El Aguila. Wreck diving certification is advised. At 300 feet long, the freighter is the largest wreck in Roatan and one of the biggest in the entire Caribbean. There are holes cut into the hull for divers, but a light source is necessary.
Texas, at 90 feet underwater, sits off Roatan’s western and southernmost tip and is so named because everything associated with it is Texas sized large. The fact that it sits at the confluence of two ocean currents probably aids in the growth of the massive barrel sponges – some big enough to swim inside of. It is also one of the only locations around Roatan where the Sargassum Triggerfish can be found.
West End Wall
West End Wall is another very popular dive site. It features a massive wall with a large concentration of sea life. Sting rays and eagle rays are common sights as the bottom of the wall provides good hunting territories for them. The West End Wall is also popular among snorkelers.
Ready to go diving? When you book with Blue Bahia, you will get a discount on Roatan scuba diving at our on-site dive shop, Octopus Dive School. Ask us about our rates today!