10 Days in Roatan for under $2,000
For Bryan and I’s 10 year wedding anniversary, we ditched the kids (sorry guys 🙉) and took our very FIRST trip without them. 🎉🎉
We knew exactly where we wanted to go, Roatan Honduras. Roatan is home to the world’s second largest barrier reef, the Mesoamerican Reef and if you have ever tried snorkelling with small children, you know it is basically impossible.
So it was a no-brainer, 10 days of lounging and snorkelling – it sounded perfect!
** update: 5 months later, my children have yet to forgive me for leaving them behind **
We flew from Toronto to El Salvador with Avianca and arrived late at night on our first layover. To save some money, we opted to spend the night at the airport since we were flying out at 8am to Roatan.
After being corralled into a glass room with blaring music and air conditioning cranked, we managed to get an hour or two of sleep. Definitely NOT ideal, but I wasn’t keen on dropping $200 on a hotel for just a few hours.
👉👉 5 Globetrotters Tip: You are allowed to sleep in Terminal 6, but remember to pack travel pillows and blankets! All the chairs have armrests, so chances are you are sleeping on the floor.
Bonus Tip: Travel with a fine gentlemen who will offer you his sweater after you forget yours. Sorry Bryan. Doesn’t he look awfully cold up there? 😬
You know I love my house swapping! I hit up everyone on the island with a request to stay, and to our surprise we had a bite! We ended up staying in a 3 bedroom ocean front condo in West Bay.
If you come to Roatan, this is where you want to be! We seriously scored on our accommodation!
Not only did we get our accommodation for free, but the amazing owners of our condo left us their car for free also! The roads are pretty bad on Roatan with potholes everywhere, but we took it nice and slow and really enjoyed having the option to drive around and get our own groceries.
👉👉 5 Globetrotters Tip: Don’t rent a car. I will be the first person to admit, I love my car rentals, but if we were to go back we wouldn’t bother. Eating out is so affordable, everything is within walking distance and the taxis and scooters are so affordable if you want to make a grocery store run. So save your money!
We did quite a bit of driving, especially when we visited Paya Bay which is 2 hours away on the opposite end of the island. So we were pleasantly surprised when we went to fill up (with premium gasoline also!) that it cost only $35.
We visited West End twice and there is no free parking here. You can opt to take a water taxi (for $3 a person) but they stop running at 5pm when the sun sets. Since we had a car we chose to drive and pay the $5 parking.
We had the freedom to move around and bring whatever we wanted (including our snorkel gear and picnic basket). West End is super hip and definitely worth a visit. If you are looking for nightlife, this is where you will find it. Along with some nice restaurants and shops and of course, beautiful beaches and snorkelling.
Groceries & Liquor: $179
Typically I don’t add this line in our overall budget (since we have to eat when we are home too) but I did this time around. We took advantage of our time away and consumed quite a bit more than we normally would have.
Paya Bay: $10 entry + $18 lunch
We drove to the East End of the island to visit Paya Bay, which just so happens to be a Naturist park (more on that later 🙈). Our House Swapping host was adamant that we go so we took her advice. The property is gorgeous and I must say, you should really go if you visit Roatan!
Gumbalimba Park: $100
Since we were travelling with no kids, we thought we would do something fun and “touristy”. Neither of us had ever zip lined, so we stopped by Gumbalimba, a favourite with the cruise ship passengers. The Ziplining alone was $60 and you can add on a walk through the park for $40 more.
But we definitely got more than we bargained for! A monkey stole our credit card (literally out of our back pocket) and Bryan got up close and personal during a zip line manoeuvre with his instructor. 🤣
We did end up getting our credit card back and Bryan received more action that day than all week 🤷♀️ So I would count that as a win-win!
coming up: our honest review on Gumbalimba Park
Eating out: $280
We definitely spent more on eating out than we have while travelling, probably ever! When we travel with the kids, we rarely eat out, so we took advantage of that this time around. I would say we ate out 10 times, and most meals were around $20. We stuck to local favourites as opposed to the trendy ones. Better food, and better prices!
This was a beach vacation! We spent most of our days swimming, snorkelling and lounging. The best things in life are truly free and we always gravitate towards those things.
Remember, zero kids. We soaked up every minute we relished doing NO-THING.
coming up: Best places to snorkel in Roatan
We did hire our friends, Jay and Lavina, to take us out on their boat for a snorkel. Since we don’t dive, all of our snorkelling was off the beach.
Being able to snorkel off a boat gave us plenty of spots to choose from and new things to see. We thoroughly enjoyed the time we had with them in the water, but even more so just hanging out on their boat. Jay and Lavina sold everything and left their Texas lives and stressful jobs to pursue their dream of opening a dive shop in Roatan. They have been so successful and were even featured on HGTV Island Life!
Highly recommend Bottom Time Scuba, you will love your time and their company!
👉👉 5 Globetrotters Tip: On a cruise? No problem! They will pick you up at your port stop, give you an amazing day and drop you off!
Total: $1,774 usd
Have you been to Roatan?