Birding and Boating on Lago de Yojoa
The extensive marshes and forests around Lago de Yojoa, located in the transition zone between the Valle de Sula and the central highlands, boast the country’s largest variety of bird species. One count put the number of species at 407. Whatever the exact number, the lake and surrounding forests are a birder’s paradise. One particularly good spot is at Hotel Agua Azul or the nearby Isla del Venado; another is the foothills of Santa Bárbara near San Luis de Planes.
Largemouth bass fishing in the lake was once legendary, attracting anglers from across the globe, but the bass population has declined due to overfishing. Much more common nowadays is tilapia, a nonnative species. Large fish farms on the lake produce as many as 20 tons of harvested fish per day. Yacht and fishing trips with equipment can be arranged on the lake by contacting Richard Joint of Honduyate (www.honduyatemarina.com). Local fishermen, especially at Las Marías on the west side of the lake, will also be happy to arrange trips. If you go this route, it’s best to come equipped with your own gear.
A few locals stationed along the canal between Peña Blanca and the lake also rent rowboats for a nominal fee (usually around US$2) for tourists to paddle out onto the lake. One spot to look for them is about two kilometers from Peña Blanca on the El Mochito road, where the road takes a sharp turn. Here a path leads down to the canal’s edge. There is also a sign advertising boats for rent (se aquila lanchas) just before the D&D Brewery, and the turicentro run by the Brisas del Lago hotel is open to nonguests as well. This is a good way for bird-watchers to patrol some of the wetlands around the edge of the lake. Boats are also available at the lakeside hotels Agua Azul, Los Remos, and Finca Las Glorias, which are also lovely settings for lunch.
© Chris Humphrey and Amy E. Robertson from Moon Honduras, 5th Edition