by - November 02, 2018

 We traveled to Roatan, Honduras for 8 days, booked our flights via Air Transat and stayed in 3 different accommodations in order to visit 5 areas of the island. Starting with Pristine Bay, West Bay, West end, Punta Gorda and Oakridge. Yes, that is a whole lot of touring! Needless to say, we organized most of our itinerary before even landing on the island that way we wouldn't waste anytime.

Slaves who got away?

If you plan on going to Roatan, you must learn about the Garifuna people, they are descendants of African slaves that escaped a shipwreck. In the midst of auctioning slaves, Europeans would capture west Africans and ship them across the Atlantic Ocean to the "New World". By luck, it is said one ship with slaves collapsed and many were able to escape and swam ashore to Roatan among other places. 

After researching Garifuna culture, I knew I had to experience it myself. So I headed to Punta Gorda, which is where they first settled after the shipwreck. Every week, usually on Sundays, the Garifuna people perform a lively show of African drums and dancing which recounts the hardships of the slaves leading up to their final freedom. 

Personally, the most intriguing observation is that the Garifuna people had such a remarkable resemblance to Haitian people, physically as well ritually. Walking around the beach, I was approached by a local who insisted that I was Garifuna and I completely understand why, I felt like I was among my long lost brothers and sisters. Historically, the similarity is evidently linked to the fact that Haitians are descendants of west Africa as well.

After visiting Punta Gorda, we went to Oakridge, a community built on the shore of the Caribbean sea. The only way to access the village is by boat, so we took a water taxi through the mangroves which was a sight to see. This area was once a playground for pirates who were on a quest for long lost treasures rumored to be on the island. They took refuge on the hills of Oakridge, casting cannon balls down onto their enemies. 

I met the city Councillor of Roatan!

I was able to experience Garifuna culture & Oakridge in such a unique way because I went on these adventures with Roatan's city Councillor, Nidia. Before arriving to Honduras, I planned to bring items in need to any family that I may come across. After thorough online research, I was referred to contact Nidia who also has an organization named "Roatan, Because We Care" which brings relief to people on the island. Not only was I amazed to meet the city Councillor but I felt even luckier to spend a whole day with her.

Through Nidia's organization, I was paired up with the story of Victor & Victoria, they are premature twins that have lost their mother to cancer. Victoria has mobility issues and also does not speak. Currently, they are living with their grandmother and older sister who I also got to meet and spend time with.

The kids were happy to have special guests at their home, I brought them groceries, clothing, toys and school supplies. They were so happy! If you are interested to do something like this, please contact Nidia at Roatan, Because We Care.

No Garbage system in Roatan?

 After spending the whole day with Nidia, she gave me the full scoop on the island, we talked about the development of the area over the years, her amazing work as a city Councillor and the environmental issues affecting Roatan. 

Currently, the island does not have a functioning garbage system and that is a major problem. It was so hard to see such a beautiful place with countless plastic bottles washing ashore. Of course, all the tourist areas like West Bay beach are well maintained, however as soon as you walk off a resort, there is a lot of trash to be seen. 

Snorkeling in Roatan

Snorkeling is a must thing to do when you are in Roatan, the island has some of the most beautiful coral reefs seen in the world. At West Bay beach, there are coral reefs located a few meters from the shore. 

On the beach, there will be a number of salesmen approaching you with expensive packages, however for an intimate experience, I recommend contacting Oscar from Roatan Nanas, which is a private boat service that will take you snorkeling and also offers water taxi services. Oscar is a very comedic guy who actually taught me how to navigate a boat.

Rest & Relaxation

If you are seeking a fun & relaxing getaway, Roatan has a variety of resorts for all types of travelers, check out my honest reviews here. On our downtime, we relaxed on the beach, woke up to gorgeous views and had dinners by sunset.

Let's not forget the countless coconut mojitos I had at Las Verandas, so delish!

As for dining, there is a variety of restaurants catering to all tastes, however I advise checking google reviews before booking one. For the most part, the quality of food was standard, 5 star restaurants reflected their rankings and offered quality dishes. I definitely recommend having dinner by sunset at Argentinian Grill West Bay, try their steak dish, it's delicious.

Still modelling?

While on vacation, I decided to shoot my latest swimwear collection on location. There are so many photo opportunities at the beautiful resorts, it's a must. 

Speaking of photo shoots, while I was on the beach in West Bay, I was approached by a jewelry designer who asked me to model her designs on the spot. It turns out she has a boutique in Los Angeles named Van Lipp & Carter, her unique creations are made of dried flower petals. I haven't modeled in a long time but that was cool, you can see a photo from the shoot here

I already reviewed Ibagari Hotel in this article, however I have to elaborate more as it was a special experience. This place offers refined service paired with an artsy yet rustic decor as a backdrop. A champagne toast is offered at every sunset, little gifts are left on your bed randomly with peaceful quotes and the stunning bathroom has some organic spa products that are amazing. You can also go shopping in their boutique where you will find anything from purses to skin care. 

Drug Cartel?

This is random, however if you see this fake cruise ship while in Roatan...this was actually a nightclub in the making. The story is that the owner, Franco Lombardi was arrested the day after opening night, turns out he was part of a drug cartel and was sought by the US DEA for a while and they finally caught him. In the end, club Isery was only open for ONE night and now it is just sitting there empty since 2016. 

I'm planning on posting a small vlog of my trip to Honduras this month, if you are interested, subscribe to my channel. If you plan on travelling to Roatan, you must visit more than one area on the island. Otherwise, here are other activities to do in Roatan:

Can't wait to share my next travel adventure with you soon! It's very different from this destination. 

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  1. Excellent post (as always)!Thank you very much :) xx

  2. I love how you've combined a travel diary with historical facts about the area - brilliant read! You look so gorgeous in this yellow bikini by the way babe :) x

  3. Wow! Incredible pics! I need to visit one day too!
    xoxo, Vanessa

  4. You look gorgeous in all of these your bikini outfits. That outfit with shorts and a cropped top is really cute as well. No wonder you were asked to model on the spot by that designer, you do look like a supermodel.

    Roatan seems like a lovely place to visit. It is great that you were able to visit different parts of the island. I loved reading about the history of Roatan and the fact that you didn't only talk about the touristic parts. Getting to know the community in any place is a great thing to do, a real learning experience. Sometimes the only way to do that is to venture outside the touristy areas.

    I'm sorry to hear that Roatan has a problem with garbage maintenance. I hope the problem will be resolved in the future. I'm sure that it is a wonderful place nevertheless...well worth a visit!

  5. What a charming place! And you look absolutely stunning on your photos dear. Love the cute swimsuits!

    Jessica |

  6. A great post! <3
    I am following you and we invite you to me

  7. Oh wow, I've never heard of the place before but it looks beautiful and the history is so interesting - thanks for sharing! :)

    Hope that you had a great weekend :) We had a quiet and relaxing one here.

    Away From The Blue Blog

  8. wow you are stunning and these photos are amazing!

  9. Such gorgeous photos, this place looks so blissful and beautiful! ♥︎

    Sophie | soinspo xo

  10. very nice post

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  11. You look amazing in all these photos. Thanks for the wonderful sharing of holiday pictures. I believe the holiday was enjoyable.

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