A Different Kind Of Paradise – From Lake Tahoe To Roatan, Honduras

roatan west bay panorama

A few weeks ago I left my beautiful home for a week on white sand beaches, eating fruit from a hammock and exploring the underwater ecosystems off the coast of Roatan, the largest of the Bay Islands off the coast of Honduras. My girlfriend and I brought back some really cool photographs, which I usually do my best to capture during travel. Enjoy the pics and the short film. It’s difficult to tell such a great story in so little time, so I’ll let the visuals do most of the talking.

yoga in paradise

Tamara is really into yoga. The sandy bottom was tricky to balance on, but she did a great job holding this pose for over a minute so I could draw as much color into the frame as possible.

roatan west end west bay
map of bay islands honduras

Roatan is between Utila and Guanaja, north of mainland Honduras. We stayed at the upper-most end of the white sand strip, but we traveled all over the island. I snapped this from the plane window on the way out.

las rocas resort roatan

Yep, we got the room with the view. Las Rocas Resort was awesome! Wonderful hospitality, the best cooking in West Bay, dive tours and water taxis from their private dock, coconuts ripe for the machete,  privacy at the end of the sand strip, and all at $100/night.

macaw roatan

We hung out with Macaws and monkeys, and had a look-see at the different insect species on the island. Check out the Dalmation-lookalike butterfly!

monkey play in roatan
butterfly dog lookalike

I also shot some video footage with my iPhone, using a waterproof LifeProof case, which was fun to edit but frustrating to export from my computer – hence the incomplete subtitle during our crab encounter and the premature ending during the credits. Hey, it was good enough to be recognized as the LifeProof Video of the Week, so it must at least be kinda cool!

I was really stoked on certain gear items I brought with me from Tahoe Mountain Sports:

zemgear apex ninja shoes

My ZEMgear Apex Ninja Shoes were perfect on the sharp Caribbean coastline and for running on the beach. I also shredded the top of my toes on my right foot the first day snorkeling, so from then on I wrapped my toes in athletic tape and wore these inside a pair of XL swim fins. They worked wonders and I never noticed the injuries in the water!

lole flower pareo wraparound

Tamara got lots of use out of her Lole Flower Pareo Wraparound Skirt. She used it as a skirt, a light blanket and a towel. This versatile ‘sarong’ dries out fast and packs down small, so it’s great for adventure travel…and it’s really cute!

chums floating sunglasses
oneill mens tank tops

My buoyant sunglasses keepers made by Chums gave me the confidence to take a dip whenever, wherever, and my O’Neill men’s tank top gave me the confidence to chow down on mouth-watering seafood dishes like a real man.

swim with dolphins roatan

Swimming with dolphins was sooooo cool! We spent over an hour in the water with two brothers named Anthony and Nick. They were teenagers so they had plenty of energy and were really friendly. We even got to ride them! They both approach you from behind, you reach back and feel for their mouths, and stand up! Be sure to scroll back up and watch the video in case you missed the action. I brought my iPhone in with me and kept it in my boardshorts pocket so I could whip it out and snap shots like this whenever my hands were free. I’m so glad I decided to replace my lost LifeProof case before the trip. – If you haven’t noticed yet, I’m a big fan of my LifeProof waterproof case.

suncloud polarized sunglasses
kayak snorkel roatan

My Suncloud Voucher polarized sunglasses travel almost everywhere I do, and they’re the perfect tint for all conditions. Not too bright on the sunniest of days, and not too dark on early morning adventures when I need them more for protection from wind, dirt and snow than I do for protection from harmful rays of sun.

roatan dive life

This shot puts life in Roatan in perspective. Note the chickens, the barred windows and the scuba gear hanging to dry. It’s only considered ‘dangerous’ in certain areas after dark, and we were a bit hesitant to travel after reading all the current warnings on the news. However, those refer mostly to cities on the mainland, and I urge any potential visitors to not neglect the beautiful island and community that is Roatan, Honduras. Life is much different here than on the mainland, and as long as you have some common sense you should feel plenty safe navigating yourself around this the Bay Islands.

diving tourism honduras
fruity drinks in hammock

I found this sign quite amusing, seeing as it’s an ad directed toward overweight Anglos. Tourism is Roatan’s main source of income, and once per week a cruise ship arrives and the port is flooded with visitors looking to indulge in the island life.

Then there’s me, looking extremely touristy in my hammock, drinking a Pina Colada straight from a coconut I plucked. That was one of my daydreams leading up to our Honduran adventure: eating fresh fruit from a hammock by the beach. Who doesn’t indulge every once in a while?

Thanks to Las Rocas Resort & Dive Center for the fantastic hospitality, Tahoe Mountain Sports for supplying all the great outdoor gear, and Tamara for providing all the free flyer miles and the wonderful company.

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