Although it has two coastlines, Honduras’s prime beaches are all on the north, Caribbean coast. Truly superb stretches of powdery sand lined by coconut palms can be found all along the coast, from Guatemala to the Mosquitia region near Nicaragua.
The best “urban” beaches, where tourists can stay at decent hotels, are at Tela and Trujillo. Both have clean beaches right in town and easily accessible excellent beaches just outside of town. La Ceiba and Puerto Cortés have city beaches, but they’re dirty and not particularly attractive. A nice beach, Playa Cienaguita, can be found just a few minutes outside of Puerto Cortés, on the road toward Omoa.
Visitors willing to take day trips or to rough it a bit in less-than-ideal accommodations will find the country’s best beaches at villages between these four main towns. Many Garífuna villages are situated along idyllic beaches, including (from west to east) Bajamar, Miami, Tornabé, Triunfo de la Cruz, Sambo Creek, Río Esteban, Santa Fe, and Santa Rosa de Aguán. Basic hotel rooms are available in all these villages.
Much of the Mosquitia is lined with kilometers of wide open, deserted beach, though facilities are minimal. The Bay Islands also boast lovely stretches of beach. West Bay Beach in Roatán is about as fine a patch of tropical beach as you could hope to find, and the island has a couple of dozen others along its coastline. Utila only has a couple of small beaches on the main island, but several sandy cays just offshore. The north side of Guanaja has fine stretches of powdery sand, and the less-visited Cayos Cochinos are postcard perfect.
© Chris Humphrey and Amy E. Robertson from Moon Honduras, 5th Edition