Is Roatan Safe?
Yes, Roatan is a safe island since it relies heavily on tourism. However, it is worth noting that Roatan has fewer crime incidents and is no more unsafe than other tourist attractions. Some areas are linked to burglary and petty theft, especially tourist areas.
Honduras is linked to gang activity and the drug trade. While tourists are usually not the main targets for this, it is still important to be cautious when visiting the area. Roatan is a long island, and it is best to stick to the most populated areas like the West End.
Always be aware of your surroundings since criminals look for easy targets. Nonetheless, by taking safety precautions, you can rest easy and enjoy yourself on Roatan.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Roatan
General Safety Tips
– Secure items of value in a security box or safe, if provided by your hotel, resort or vacation home.
– Keep a photocopy or scan of your passport, credit cards and airline reservations, in the event that they are lost or stolen.
– When on the beach, restaurant or a bar, do not leave your bag or belongings unattended or hanging from the back of a chair where they can be easily stolen.
– Exploring of isolated areas of the island are best done through a guided tour or a car, rather than on scooters, as there have been a few isolated incidents of muggings on scooters.
– The beach walk between West End and West Bay Beach should not be attempted alone, as muggings have occurred on this isolated stretch of beach. It is safer to take a land or water taxi.
– Avoid displays of money and valuables such as expensive jewelry, watches, cell phones, i-pods, cameras, etc. Roatan is very casual, and by dressing casually, you will not draw attention to yourself.
-The tropical sun is stronger than you may realize. Apply sunscreen at least 30 minutes before going into the sun, especially on children.
-There are sand flies and mosquitos throughout the Caribbean and the bites can affect visitors. Apply repellent before going out, use anti-itch cream if required. Please refrain from using Deet if entering the sea as this damages the reef,
Night Time Safety
– Do not leave drinks unattended, or accept a drink that you have not seen opened or prepared in front of you.
– Avoid walking in poorly lit, deserted areas or alone at night
– Avoid carrying large amounts of money or valuable personal items while out.
– Don’t open your hotel, resort or vacation rental room door to anyone that you don’t know.
– At night, avoid areas of Coxen Hole especially El Suampo, Calle Ocho and Wild Cane. In French Harbour Barrio Suampo and Barrio Los Fuertes.
– Be aware that in Honduras it is illegal to use or be in possession of drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, ecstasy,etc.
– , Prostitution is illegal as is sex with minors.
– When leaving your accommodation at night do not leave valuable items in areas which can be seen or reached through windows.
Water Safety and Marine Park Laws
– Avoid touching or standing on the reef, as it is living and is easily damaged. Fire coral, urchins and other aquatic life can cause stings, and abrasions from coral become easily infected. If tired while snorkeling, float until rested.
– Removing lobster, conch, shells, and coral within the Marine Protected Area is strictly prohibited.
– Net fishing is prohibited. Spearfishing is only allowed if a permit is obtained from the Marine Park Office in West End and can only be used to catch Lion Fish, an invasive species.
– Line fishing is permitted from shores and docks within the marine park. No license is needed.
– Certified divers should adhere to diving regulations including depth and time restrictions.
– If using small watercraft such as kayaks, peddle-boats or snorkeling etc., stay within swimming distance of the shore in the event that weather conditions change and you are not able to maneuver the watercraft or swim back.
– Avoid swimming in the water taxi lanes and shore access points in West End or West Bay Beach.
– Please do not leave rubbish, cigarette butts or bottles on the beach.
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