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Encyclopedia > Bay Islands (department)

Islas de la Bahía ("Bay Islands") is one of the 18 departments into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. The Central American nation of Honduras is currently divided into 18 departments (departamentos). ... For other uses, see Central America (disambiguation). ...


The islands boast splendid beaches and unspoilt coral reefs, making them a haven for scuba divers and vacationers. The departmental capital is Coxen Hole, on the island of Roatán. Some of the biodiversity of a coral reef, in this case the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. ... Early ideas of autonomous under-water systems appear in Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea Scuba Diving is the use of independent breathing equipment to stay underwater for long periods for recreational diving and professional diving. ... Roatán, located between the islands of Utila and Guanaja (), is the largest of Honduras Bay Islands. ...


The department covers a total surface area of 261 km² and, in 2005, had an estimated population of 43,018 people. It comprises three geographically separate groups:

  1. Islas de la Bahía (with the main islands Roatán, Guanaja, Útila and numerous satellite islands)
  2. Cayos Cochinos, further south
  3. Swan Islands, 120 km to the north north

Contents

Roatán, located between the islands of Utila and Guanaja (), is the largest of Honduras Bay Islands. ... Guanaja is one of the Bay Islands of Honduras, and is in the Caribbean. ... Útila (Isla de Útila) is the third largest of Honduras Bay Islands, after Roatán and Guanaja, in a region that marks the south end of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, the second-largest in the world. ... The Cayos Cochinos or Cochinos Cays are a group of two small islands (Cayo Menor and Cayo Grande) and 13 more small coral cays situated 30 kilometers northeast of La Ceiba on the northern shores of Honduras. ... The Swan Islands are a chain of three islands located in the northwestern Caribbean Sea, approximately ninety miles off the coastline of Honduras. ...

History

Each of the three main islands has a distinct character. Utila is flat, a backpacker paradise, and ringed by spectacular coral reefs. Scuba divers flock to the island, as it is one of the cheapest places on Earth to be PADI certified, and the magnificent yet gentle whale shark swims in the waters off the island. Roatán, the largest island, has a mountainous backbone and splendid beaches and resorts that attract tourists from all over the world. Guanaja, hit hard by Hurricane Mitch in 1998, is covered with Caribbean pine trees and remains relatively undeveloped. Guanaja, visited by Christopher Columbus in 1502, was also a hideout for 17th-century buccaneers, who grew rich by attacking gold-laden Spanish galleons. Regular airline and ferry services link the islands with the city of La Ceiba, on the mainland. Binomial name (Smith, 1828) Range of whale shark The whale shark, Rhincodon typus, is a slow filter feeding shark that is the largest living fish species. ... La Ceiba is a port city on the northern coast of Honduras, Central America on the Caribbean Sea. ...


The Bay Islands were first discovered by Christopher Columbus on his fourth voyage to America in 1502. They were later claimed, and successively held, by Great Britain, Spain, and the Dutch United Provinces. Britain finally took control in 1643 and, with the exception of a one-month period of Spanish dominance in 1780, held onto them as a Crown colony, dependent on Jamaica. In 1860, in the aftermath of the William Walker filibustering affair, the British crown recognized Honduran sovereignty and ceded possession of them. The department of Islas de la Bahía was officially incorporated into the nation on 14 March 1872. Christopher Columbus (1451 – May 20, 1506) was a navigator, colonizer, and explorer and one of the first Europeans to explore the Americas after the Vikings. ... 1502 was a common year starting on Wednesday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Map of Dutch Republic by Joannes Janssonius United Netherlands redirects here. ... // Events January 21 - Abel Tasman discovers Tonga February 6 - Abel Tasman discovers the Fiji islands. ... 1780 was a leap year starting on Saturday (see link for calendar). ... 1860 is the leap year starting on Sunday. ... William Walker William Walker (May 8, 1824 – September 12, 1860) was a U.S. physician, lawyer, journalist, adventurer, and soldier of fortune who attempted to conquer several Latin American countries in the mid-19th century. ... A filibuster is a private individual who engages in unauthorized warfare against a foreign country, often with the intent of overthrowing the existing government. ... is the 73rd day of the year (74th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1872 (MDCCCLXXII) was a leap year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian Calendar (or a leap year starting on Saturday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ...


Tourism and Infrastructure

The Bay Islands of Honduras offer a very different world from that of mainland Honduras. The Islands history, which includes many disputes between the Spaniards and the British during colonial times, with the British actually controlling the islands most of time, have given the islands a unique heritage. There are several islands within the department, with three larger ones being the most popular with tourists: Utila, Roatan and Guanaja. English is so widely spoken in the Islands, that some people don't even speak Spanish, despite the fact that this is the official language of Honduras.


Getting to the islands is an easy task these days: Isleña (TACA) Airlines, Sosa Airlines, Atlantic Airlines all have service to all three major islands on a regular basis, in addition, Utila and Roatán have ferry service provided on the M.V. Galaxy. Moreover, TACA, Delta and Continental offer direct flights from the United States on select days of the week. In addition, Roatan Air Services offers charter flights between Roatan and Utila.


Roatán has a paved road that connects the most important communities of the Island. Starting from the Western End of the Island, at the community of West Bay, the roads leads through the communities of West End, Sandy Bay, Coxen Hole, Brick Bay, Mount Pleasant, French Harbour and Oakridge - Punta Gorda. From here, the road becomes a dirt road and continues east for a distance, to the area of Paya Bay, Camp Bay, Port Royal, and other communities. Roatán offers outstanding real estate investment opportunities.


There are several world-class developments under way that can be a convenient way of purchasing a piece of paradise. Parrot Tree Plantation, The Meridian at Lighthouse Point, Infinity Bay, and Lawson Rock are probably the most impressive development sites, however, others such as Palmetto Bay Club and Mayan Princess are also outstanding.


Municipalities

Islas de la Bahía department is divided into four municipalities (municipalidades): The second level of territorial subdivisions in Honduras are the municipalities, the first level being the Departments of Honduras. ...

Municipality description Capital Area
(km²)
Population
census 2001
Guanaja Guanaja island Guanaja 55.4 4,535
José Santos Guardiola eastern Roatán island
Helene Island, Morat,
Barbaretta, Pigeon Cays
Oak Ridge 64.6 7,613
Roatán western Roatán island
Swan Islands?
Cayos Cochinos
Coxen Hole 91.3 17,425
Útila Útila island Útila 49.3 1,979
Islas de la
Bahia
incl. Swan Islands
and Cayos Cochinos
Coxen Hole 260.6 31,552

Image:1870 census Lindauer Weber 01. ... Guanaja is one of the Bay Islands of Honduras, and is in the Caribbean. ... Roatán, located between the islands of Utila and Guanaja (), is the largest of Honduras Bay Islands. ... The Swan Islands are a chain of three islands located in the northwestern Caribbean Sea, approximately ninety miles off the coastline of Honduras. ... The Cayos Cochinos or Cochinos Cays are a group of two small islands (Cayo Menor and Cayo Grande) and 13 more small coral cays situated 30 kilometers northeast of La Ceiba on the northern shores of Honduras. ... Útila (Isla de Útila) is the third largest of Honduras Bay Islands, after Roatán and Guanaja, in a region that marks the south end of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, the second-largest in the world. ... The Swan Islands are a chain of three islands located in the northwestern Caribbean Sea, approximately ninety miles off the coastline of Honduras. ... The Cayos Cochinos or Cochinos Cays are a group of two small islands (Cayo Menor and Cayo Grande) and 13 more small coral cays situated 30 kilometers northeast of La Ceiba on the northern shores of Honduras. ...

See also

For other uses, see Garden of Eden (disambiguation). ...

External links

  • Roatan, Honduras Diving

Coordinates: 16°17′27″N, 86°24′39″W The Central American nation of Honduras is currently divided into 18 departments (departamentos). ... Atlántida is a department located on the north Caribbean shore of Honduras, Central America. ... Choluteca is one of the 18 departments (departamentos) into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... Colón is one of the 18 departments into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... Comayagua is one of the 18 departments (departamentos) into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... Copán is one of the departments in the west of Honduras. ... Cortés is one of the 18 departments into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... El Paraíso is one of the 18 departments (departamentos) into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... Francisco Morazán is one of the departments of Honduras. ... Gracias a Dios (Spanish: Thanks to God) is one of the 18 departments (departamentos) into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... Intibucá is a department in Honduras. ... La Paz is one of the 18 departments into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... Lempira is one of the 18 departments of Honduras Central America, located in the western part of the country with borders with El Salvador. ... Ocotepeque is one of the 18 departments of Honduras, Central America, located in the West and bordering both El Salvador and Guatemala. ... Olancho is one of the 18 departments into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... Santa Bárbara is one of the 18 departments (departamentos) into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... Valle is one of the 18 departments into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... Yoro is one of the 18 departments into which the Central American nation of Honduras is divided. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Honduras. ... Map of Earth showing lines of latitude (horizontally) and longitude (vertically), Eckert VI projection; large version (pdf, 1. ...


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