16 top Things To Do In Roatan When Visiting on a cruise ship

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So, your cruise ship is docking in Roatan, Honduras for the day? Lucky you! We were fortunate to visit this stunning island in 2023 on the Wonder of The Seas. If you are like me, and have not visited the island before, then you are probably scratching your head wondering about things to do in Roatan.

Well don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. We did tons of research before we went looking at all the various excursions and activities available so that you don’t have to.

Think of this guide as your treasure map to the best things to do in Roatan on a cruise day. From scuba diving in world-renowned reefs to hanging out with sloths, we’ve got you covered.

Why Roatan Honduras is a Cruise Stop You Simple Cannot Miss

Roatan is not just another Caribbean island. It’s a part of Honduras that offers a unique blend of stunning natural beauty and vibrant local culture.

The island is known for having one of the most beautiful reefs in the world, making it a diver’s paradise.

It’s also home to some amazing wildlife and some of the most beautiful beaches you have ever seen.

People often ask “Is Roatan Safe?“. Well I can assure you it is! The locals are SO friendly. I can’t wait to come back and visit this island again next year.

The port of Roatan Honduras
The Port of Roatan

Scuba Diving or Snorkeling: Which One IS for You?

If you’re into underwater adventures, Roatan is your playground. The island is famous for its scuba diving spots, boasting vibrant marine life and crystal-clear waters. It’s also home to one of the largest and most spectacular coral reefs second only the the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.

If you’re not dive-certified, don’t worry. The snorkeling here is equally spectacular and is definitely one of the best things to do with your time here. Either way, you’ll be talking about your underwater experiences long after you’ve sailed away from the incredible island.

A Day Trip to Little French Key: Worth It?

If you have done any research on the island, Little French Key will no doubt have popped up on your radar.

Little French Key is a small private island off the east end of Roatan and it’s the perfect place for a day trip. Think of it as a mini-vacation within your vacation.

You can relax on the beautiful beach, snorkel, or even try some water sports. French Key offers a slice of the good life in Honduras, and it’s a must-visit.

Half Moon Bay: A Slice of Paradise

Another great spot to consider is Half Moon Bay. This is a stunning beach located at the west end of Roatan.

It’s a perfect spot for some sunbathing, swimming, or even a quick game of beach volleyball. The bay also offers some of the best snorkeling spots on the island. Trust me, you won’t want to miss it.

Boat Tours: What’s the Buzz?

Boat tours are a fantastic way to get a different perspective on what the island has to offer. Whether it’s a sail around the island or a fishing expedition, boat tours provide a unique view of Roatan.

Plus, they’re a great way to pack in a lot of sightseeing when you’re pressed for time.

Monkey and Sloth Hangout in the Jungle: Destination and CuteNESS Overload

If you’re an animal lover, this is your spot. The many Monkey and Sloth Hangout locations that dot the island are one of the best places to get up close and personal with some of Honduras’ most adorable residents.

It’s a fun and educational experience that’s perfect for families or anyone looking to make some furry friends.

Things To Do In Roatan - cuddle a Sloth
One of the Best Things To Do In Roatan – Cuddle a Sloth

Exploring Sandy Bay on Roatan Island: More Than Just A Beach

Sandy Bay is another beautiful part of the island that’s worth exploring. It’s less crowded than other beaches and offers a range of activities from paddleboarding to kayaking. Plus, it’s home to the Roatan Marine Park, where you can learn about the island’s marine life.

Around The Island – Roatan’s Hidden Gem: Camp Bay

If you’re looking to escape the crowds, Camp Bay is your go-to. It’s a less-visited beach that offers stunning views and a peaceful atmosphere.

It’s one of those places where you can truly disconnect and enjoy the natural beauty of Honduras.

Shopping and Dining When You Visit Roatan: Where to Go? Cruise Port or Town?

Roatan isn’t just about natural beauty; it’s also a great place for some retail therapy and gastronomic delights. Whether you’re looking for souvenirs or fresh seafood, the island has something for everyone.

You can find out more about what to expect at the Port of Roatan in our port guide.

Roatan Port - A great shopping and dining destination
Roatan Port – A great shopping and dining destination

OUR CURATED LIST OF THE TOP 16 Roatan Attractions: The Must-See List of THE Best Things To Do In Roatan

Okay, so we’ve given you an overview of the island’s attractions. But let’s get down to specifics.

We’ve put together this curated list of what we think are the top 16 things to do in Roatan. As shore excursions go these are all awesome!

PLUS, they won’t break the bank! Compare these to the onboard excursions offered by your Cruise Line shore excursions desk and you’ll find you can save a LOT of money.

All the tour operators here are reliable and trustworthy and are backed by either Viator or Get Your Guide – two of the largest tour activity operators in the industry.

Both offer free cancellations and great support if you ever need it.

Quick disclosure! If you do purchase any tours via these links, we will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. It helps cover the costs of running our website, so I hope you don’t mind.

So without any further ado, let’s get started:

  1. Monkey and Sloth Hangout Experience and Beach Visit with Optional Zip Line

    Get your heart pumping with ziplining that suits everyone, from the thrill-seeker to the easy-going. Not a fan of heights? No worries, you can skip the ziplining part. Next, it's time for some up-close and personal moments with Roatan's coolest residents: monkeys, sloths, and a colorful array of birds like parrots and macaws.

    After you've had your fill of adventure and animal cuddles, unwind on the pristine white sands of West Bay Beach. Snorkel gear is ready if you want to explore underwater. And hey, they'll even pick you up from your cruise ship.

    This experience is a hit with animal enthusiasts, adrenaline junkies, and families alike. It's the perfect blend of action and chill time.

    Check Price and Availability
  2. Roatan's ORIGINAL Customizable Best of Roatan Tour

    Discover Roatan your way with a tour that's as unique as you are. Forget the one-size-fits-all approach; this is all about what you want to see. Whether you're into sun-soaked beaches, quaint villages, adrenaline-pumping activities, or wildlife havens, Roatan has it all.

    Your guide is basically your personal Roatan GPS, so you can skip the "Where should we go next?" debate. They'll whisk you away from your cruise ship or hotel and straight to your chosen hotspots. Plus, they've got a treasure trove of recommendations up their sleeve.

    The best part? You call the shots on when to start and how long to explore. It's like having a "Choose Your Own Adventure" book, but in real life.

    Check Price and Availability
  3. ATV Guided Adventure and Beach Time At Flowers Bay

    Hop on an ATV and let's tear through Roatan's lush jungle in Flowers Bay for a 1.5-hour guided thrill ride. Trust me, this is the kind of adventure that makes you go "Wow, I did that!" You'll get to see the island's raw beauty up close and personal.

    But wait, there's more! After your jungle escapade, you've got options. Chill in the artsy village of West End or soak up the sun at the dreamy Las Palmas beach. Either way, you're in for stunning views, scrumptious food, and a bar that knows how to mix a mean cocktail.

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  4. Roatan 3 Stop Snorkeling Adventure: Shipwreck, Starfish & Blue Channel

    Dive into a three-hour snorkeling extravaganza around Roatan Island, hitting up not one, not two, but three epic spots. First, mingle with starfish in their natural digs. Next, glide through a vibrant coral reef in the Blue Channel. Finally, explore a real-life shipwreck like a pirate—minus the eyepatch.

    You won't have to stress about gear; top-notch snorkeling equipment is all set for you. Got questions about the fish you're seeing or the coral you're floating over? The boat's crew are basically marine-life encyclopedias, so fire away.

    Oh, and let's talk logistics. They've got you covered with pick-up and drop-off from your hotel or cruise port. Even the entrance fees are sorted.

    Check Price and Availability
  5. Beach Break at Infinity Bay Resort

    Roatan boasts a bunch of stunning beaches, but let's talk about the crown jewel: West Bay. It's a stone's throw from the cruise ports and is home to the fabulous Infinity Bay Resort. This place has something for everyone. Adults can sip cocktails at the swim-up bar, kids can make a splash in the infinity pool, and teens can perfect their tans on the beach. Oh, and if you're a foodie, the beachfront dining is a game-changer.

    But hold on, there's more to this package than just beach bliss. You'll also get a mini-tour of Roatan's west side. Think rum tastings at The Rum Company, a chocolatey pit stop at The Chocolate Factory, and a stroll through the charming West End Village.

    Check Price and Availability
  6. Catamaran Cruise With Open Bar, Food and Snorkeling

    Sail Roatan's crystal-clear waters on one of the island's top-rated catamarans. Trust me, the service is so good, you'll feel like royalty. Ready to snorkel? Grab a kit from onboard and dive into Roatan's mesmerizing coral reef. Oh, and did I mention the open bar and snacks? Yeah, it's that kind of party.

    Now, let's talk weather. Sometimes it rains, but don't sweat it. The reef keeps things calm, so the catamaran still sets sail. You might get a sprinkle and the underwater view could be a bit murky, but usually, it's all good. If you're not into sailing in the rain, just cancel 24 hours ahead to get a full refund.

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  7. Gumbalimba Park and Beach Break

    Dive into Roatán's natural wonders at Gumbalimba Park. After a quick pickup from the cruise terminal, explore walking trails, a 237-foot suspended bridge, and even an insectarium. Get up close with iguanas, monkeys, and colorful macaws, and learn about the park's animal rescue efforts.

    Cap off your day chilling at a private beach club. Enjoy the sand, free Wi-Fi, and other amenities like beach chairs and showers. Ready for a day of adventure and relaxation?

    Check Price and Availability
  8. Private Island Tour in Minivan with Local Guide (3-6 Guests)

    Kick back and let a local driver show you around Roatan, taking you wherever your heart desires. And get this: a visit to the chocolate and rum factory is on the house. Yep, free! You'll also have time to snap some Insta-worthy pics and snag local goodies. Trust me, this little slice of paradise in the Western Caribbean will steal your heart. Oh, and don't worry about the clock; they'll get you back to your cruise port, right on time.

    Check Price and Availability
  9. Roatan Dune Buggy Adventure with Private Beach Resort and Sloth/Monkey Encounter

    Discover Roatan's wild side and chill spots in one epic private tour. First up, meet some adorable sloths at an island sanctuary. Then, rev up an all-terrain vehicle and blaze through jungle trails in an ATV Dune Buggy. Finally, unwind on a secluded private beach. Ah, the good life!

    The best part? This tour is all about you. Take your time at each stop; no rush. And don't worry about hidden costs; entrance fees are already covered. If you get peckish, there's an option to grab lunch and drinks at the beach resort.

    Flexible start times mean you can fit this adventure around your plans. And yep, they'll pick you up and drop you off right at the cruise port.

    Check Price and Availability
  10. Chocolate Making Class at the Roatan Chocolate Factory in West End

    Get ready for a delicious adventure on Roatan Island that's all about chocolate! First, you'll head to the Roatan Chocolate Factory in the island's West End. Here, you'll get the lowdown on how Honduran chocolate goes from bean to bar. But wait, it gets better.

    Roll up your sleeves because you're about to become a chocolatier for a day. Yep, you'll join a hands-on chocolate-making class right in the factory. Craft your own chocolate bar and feel free to munch on free samples while you're at it. Whether you take your creation home or devour it on the spot is totally up to you.

    Check Price and Availability
  11. Kayak Harbor Adventure and Reef Snorkel

    Maximize your Roatan visit with a shore excursion that's got it all: kayaking in French Cay Harbor and snorkeling in the reef. The best part? It's a small-group tour, so you get that personalized feel without breaking the bank.

    Don't sweat the gear; kayaks and snorkeling equipment are ready and waiting for you. All you have to do is show up and have a blast. You'll spend about three hours making waves and exploring underwater wonders before heading back to your ship.

    Check Price and Availability
  12. Mangrove Tunnel Tour with Snorkeling

    Kick off your day with a trip to a local wildlife park. Get up close with monkeys, sloths, and vibrant birds while soaking up some Honduran wildlife facts. Then, head east for some jaw-dropping hilltop views of the jungle on your way to Jonesville.

    Once there, navigate through mangrove tunnels with a guide. You'll end up at a secluded swimming hole, perfect for snorkeling among the mangroves or checking out nearby reefs.

    Wrap up your day with a water-based sightseeing tour. Get a glimpse of how locals hop from bay to bay, making life on the water look easy. Ready for a day that's part educational, part adventure, and all fun?

    Check Price and Availability
  13. Horseback Riding at Mahogany Bay

    Saddle up for an unforgettable ride through Roatan's natural wonders. Picture this: you're trotting through an ancient oak forest, navigating rocky hills, and weaving through mangrove trails. Oh, and expect to get your feet a little wet—you'll be splashing through water, too!

    Your final destination? Tortuga Point. Here, you can snap photos of everything from mangrove forests and lagoons to exotic wildlife and coral reefs. And let's not forget those iron shores and powdery white sands.

    Run by locals who know their stuff, this experience is all about quality and killer customer service.

    Check Price and Availability
  14. Parasailing adventure with round trip transfers included

    Get ready to tick off two epic experiences in one go. First, you'll soar over Roatan on a parasailing ride that's pure adrenaline and jaw-dropping views. Think white-sand beaches and Caribbean blues from a bird's-eye view. Then, it's time to chill on West Bay Beach. Swim, soak up the sun, or grab a bite to eat—it's your call.

    Don't worry about getting around; they've got you covered with round-trip transportation from the cruise ship. Plus, the ride gives you a chance to see local villages and scenic views. And keep your eyes peeled when you're up in the air; you might spot dolphins or manta rays below.

    Check Price and Availability
  15. Visit Roatan's Fantasy Island All Inclusive Beach Resort (with Snorkelling)

    Imagine a beach resort on a 21-acre private island, complete with a swimming pool, terrace, and its very own slice of the world's second-largest barrier reef. Yep, that's Fantasy Island Beach Resort for you. Just step off the beach, and you're snorkeling amid vibrant coral and marine life. Snorkel gear, paddle boards, and kayaks? All included.

    When you arrive, you're welcomed with a tasty drink. And the good vibes keep rolling with unlimited drinks—both boozy and non-boozy—plus a lunch buffet and snacks throughout the day.

    Getting there is a breeze. Fantasy Island is linked to Roatan by a bridge and is just a 20-minute drive from Mahogany Bay Port and 30 minutes from Town Center Coxen Hole Port. Transportation from the cruise port is included.

    Check Price and Availability
  16. Glassbottom Boat Semi Sub Experience

    Hop on a semi-sub glass-bottom boat and explore Roatan's marine life without getting a toe wet! This 28-passenger vessel stays afloat while you peek through windows just 6 feet below the surface. Perfect for both snorkelers and those who'd rather stay dry.

    Your adventure starts near the Roatan cruise terminal, where a quick drive takes you to the West End pier. Once aboard, you'll descend 8 steps to the viewing area. Get ready to see a vibrant underwater world full of colorful fish, coral, and sponges as you cruise along the reef.

    The whole water experience lasts about 35 minutes. After, you'll head back to the pier and be whisked away to your cruise terminal. Ready for a dry dive?

    Check Price and Availability

You Will Want To Come Back To Roatan

So there you have it. As you can see there is so much to see and do in Roatan. You will definitely want to come back.

This little island and it’s super-friendly locals really made an impression on us and we are already planning a return trip on a future cruise.

If you would like to find out more about Roatan, please read our guide to the Port of Roatan and our article that answers the question Is Roatan Safe For Cruise Passengers?

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Alan took his first cruise in 1991 and has been cruising ever since. When he is not writing articles for CruiseNonstop.com you'll find him either on a cruise ship (he's the guy in the kilt), or on the golf course!

1 thought on “16 top Things To Do In Roatan When Visiting on a cruise ship”

  1. Great information and well writtern. I’m happy to see world class tourism in Roatan.
    Im Honduran from LaCeiba and Utila.
    I have an issue with the Travel Industry that when the Caribbean is advertised Roatan is not included.
    Keep up the good work!


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