Blogs from Honduras, Central America Caribbean - page 8

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Roosters crowing, dogs barking, and firecrackers popping. This is how our day began at 4:30 this morning. Revelers celebrating Easter lit the fire crackers, which made the dogs bark, and likely had nothing to do with the roosters crowing. However, we got up and went to watch the sunrise Easter parade through the streets. We marched along with the residents of the city as the statues of Jesus, Mary and other Saints danced through the street on their way to church. It was all very festive and a unique experience. A yummy breakfast of local watermelon, eggs and pancakes was followed. We then loaded into our bus with Luis, our driver and Max, our local guide for the day. We traveled by bus to Belen Gualcho. There we toured a 500 year local church. This included ... read more
Baleada
Along the ride
Easter Parade in Santa Rosa de Copan


Today was a great day. We went to the build site. We began by introducing ourselves using our very best Spanish to the masons and their helpers. We were then assigned our tasks. Today: moving adobe bricks. Approximately 1100, 25 pound bricks, moved from the brick making area to the building area. Definitely got my workout in today. Other activities included gathering pine straw from the woods and mixing mud for tomorrow's brick making. At noon the kids came home from school. They flocked to the job site where they enjoyed engaging with the "gringos". We played cards, coloring, jump rope and handed our lots of stickers. Tossing the frisbee and playing soccer were also fun. The kids ranged in age from 2-14. After 13, they leave school and go to work to help support their ... read more
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Central America Caribbean » Honduras » Western » Gracias March 31st 2013

We arrived safely in Honduras. For most of us, travel was uneventful. After landing at San Pedro Sula, we took a long time to pass through immigration and customs. We met Luis, the representative from Habitat Honduras. He is a really nice man, with a great sense of humor. We loaded into our mini bus along with our driver for the week. The ride to Santa Rosa de Copan, was long. It was interesting to watch the landscape go from flat to mountainousThe the country is very green. agriculture plays an important role in the local economy. We saw banana, sugar cane, and coffee plantations. There were a lot of farm animals alongside the road for much of the trip. The roads are windy and full of pot holes. There were many police and military check ... read more


As far as unpleasant cities go, Tegucigalpa probably jumps to the top of my list. I just want to get the negativity out of the way first because Honduras, the little I've seen of it, is a beautiful place. But the capital is pretty grim, it's polluted, disorientating, seemingly very dangerous (police are in teams at al times with fully automatic weapons like AK-47s) and full of horrific taxi drivers. I'm pretty sure the taxi drivers are criminals protected by the law, after getting off the bus from the border we were given several farcical quotes for a journey of 2km ($25 anyone) and derision and aggression when we refused to take up the offer. We'd missed the connection to our intended destination by about 30 minutes and had the unenviable choice of catching a night ... read more
Sculpture at Gracias
Mayan Pyramids
Coban


Na Rosco op de taxi te hebben gezet is het solo-deel van mijn reis begonnen. Na een poosje in Guatemala te hebben rondgestapt met mijn zo-goed-als-niet-bestaande-Spaans op naar Honduras. Van medereizigers al allemaal adviezen gekregen over waar ik het beste naartoe kon om te duiken. Mexico was een hele goede optie, maar na alle verhalan aangehoord te hebben op de bus gestapt naar Utila, Honduras. Om de keuze nog een keer bevestigd te krijgen kom ik in Hopkins,Belize een duikinstructrice tegen uit Mexico die mij Utila nogmaals van harte aanraadt en meteen een duikschool aanbeveelt. Hopkins is een schattig dorpje in Belize met de laagste criminaliteitscijfers. En een prima strand aan de Carribean. Dus een dagje blijven hangen om te windsurfen en te chillen. De Funky Dodo blijkt een prima plekje te zijn om mede-backpackers te ... read more
Gewichtsloosheid...
...is...
...FANTASTISCH!


After a morning of diving, we decided over our Mexican lunch that we would rent an ATV and explore the island. We went down the road to the shop where we heard such things can be gotten and obtained a little red ATV of our own. Now we would ride in style like the locals. After a necessary pit stop at our dive shop for our snorkels and masks, we unsuccessfully tried to get the ATV started up for our island adventure. After John, Rafael, Santiago and some dude off the street were unable to get it started, we finally had to call the number on the side and get a second lesson in how to start the engine. Utila has only one main road that leads to the airport. From this road many small dirt ... read more
Hell's Angels
Untouched coastline
Our Mount


Despite some cloudy and windy weather, we were able to get on the morning dive boat, heading to the south side of the island. Our first dive site was Diamond Caye. This dive began with a descent to a sandy bottom where we were greeted by a friendly angel fish with a dog's personality. When we put our hand out to it, it swam right up to us. We moved along to some beautiful coral formations that seem to be unique to Utila. You swim through channels of coral with sponges, sea fans and all sorts of plants swaying gently in the current. Small reef fish dart around looking for food or avoiding becoming food. A patient diver will be rewarded with sightings of juvenile fish, tiny hermit crabs, sea snails and perhaps an eel. One ... read more
Diving on Diamond Caye
Fish on Diamond Caye
Sponges


Today we dove on the north side of the island. Seemingly the north side has the most fish life and is very popular. It did not dissapoint. Even though the waters were choppy and we had to decend with four foot rolles on the surface, once we were under it was calm and beautiful. The coolest thing about diving Utila is that the coral formation looks like all those pictures of the coral reef you see in books, but never actual see under water. They are ragged and full of tiny crevices that you can poke around (not literally) and see some amazing life. What I love about the dive sights here is that we tend to spend a lot of time in shallow parts of the reef which is great if you like the macrolife. ... read more


Keeping in theme with the Honduran way of doing things, we arrived at Deep Blue Divers at 7:00am for our 7:30 boat that left at 9:00. The original plan to dive on the north side of the island before stopping at Water Caye for a picnic lunch was somewhat altered, but it turned out to be a great day. Our first dive was a beautiful wall reef with lots of great coral formations. I was surprised by the lack of fish we saw, but the huge brain coral and aquatic plants made up for it. The theme of the day was definitely “Mishaps with Dive Equipment”. My tank nearly fell off twice, John broke his mask, John couldn’t take pictures with his camera, I couldn’t read my gauge and thought I was running out of air…need ... read more
Pelicans waiting for a snack
Water Cay
Paradise


We left Kennedy at 3:45 am on Saturday morning, arrived in San Pedro Sula at 6:25 am local time and had to kill about eight hours before our puddle-jump to the island of Utila. After clearing customs and la migra which in Honduras includes getting your picture taken, we drank a cup of coffee and paced in the San Pedro Sula airport waiting for the malls in the city to open. I had looked up the opening hours on-line and we landed with the belief that the mall opened at nine. Before I go on the reader needs to understand that San Pedro Sula, Honduras by some accounts, is the per-capita murder capital of the world. I have visited the city four times without incident, but this being my first time with ... read more
The Lighthouse grounds
Trumpet fish at The Lighthouse
The main drag, Utila




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