Although it is the main tourist town of Roatán  and lined with cabañas, restaurants, and dive shops, West End remains a slow-paced seaside village and an undeniably superb location to lose yourself in the relaxing rhythms of Caribbean life. Even during the high season (mid-December–April), people and events move at a languid pace up and down the sandy, seaside road that constitutes “town.”
It’s a telling sign that the road has been left rutted and unpaved—cars and bicycles must slow to a snail’s pace, bouncing along, while pedestrians are free to wander at leisure, stopping to browse for T-shirts or to admire yet another spectacular sunset.
Construction of new houses and cabañas continues, but in a relatively unobtrusive way—new developments are tucked away among the palms and don’t dominate the visual landscape. West End is not overwhelmed by wealthy tourists, as it has no luxury resorts, but there are a few higher-end options for those who prefer a few more comforts.
The roughly 500 local residents have not lost their easy friendliness and, fortunately, seem to be influencing the newcomers more than the newcomers are influencing them.
Minibuses to and from Coxen Hole  (14 kilometers) leave frequently between 7 a.m. and 7 or 8 p.m., US$1 each way. Collective taxis cost US$2. The ride to and from Sandy Bay  is US$0.50 in a minibus or US$1 in a collective taxi. After dark, rides can get progressively scarcer, with the last taxis leaving toward Coxen Hole at around 10 p.m., or later on weekends. Most taxis hang out by the highway exit by the Coconut Tree Store. After dark, hitching a lift in a passing pickup is often possible.
Water taxis to West Bay  leave frequently during the day; they fill up from Foster’s dock and cost US$2.50. Arrangements can be made with the captain to get picked up for the return trip later on, even after dark if you like. You can walk to West Bay along the beach in about 25 minutes, although it involves a little scamper around some wet rocks about halfway, and then crossing a tall footbridge over a canal. It can be a little treacherous at night if you don’t know the way.
It’s possible to buy airline tickets in Coxen Hole, or by calling the airline offices at the airport to make reservations. For the ferry, you have to go buy tickets at the dock, as they do not accept reservations. But apart from unusual circumstances (like the first boat after several days of rough seas), it’s not a problem to get a seat if you show up an hour before departure. A few taxis are available early in West End to catch the ferry, but you can also speak to a taxi driver the previous day to arrange for a pickup—the drivers are usually very much in need of business and happy to get up early for the work.