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About 27 km (17 mi) west of La Ceiba, the Refugio de Vida Silvestre Cuero y Salado is made up of 132 square km (51 square mi) of tropical forest formed by the confluence of the Río Cuero and Río Salado. This is one of the few places in the world where you can see manatees, aquatic creatures once mistaken for mermaids. In addition to these gentle giants, you may also spot white-faced monkeys, crocodiles, turtles, and several species of herons along the canals. The mangroves are best seen by boat, and the park organizes two-hour guided tours. The Fundación Cuero y Salado visitor center has information about the park.
To get to the park, drive west from La Ceiba, turning right after crossing the Río Bonito. Stop at the railway tracks. From here you can take the small "banana train" run by the Honduran National Railroad or a burra (a handcart operated by locals) for the remaining 9 km (6 mi). Trains leave the community of La Union seven times from 7 am to 2 pm, and return trips are 30 minutes after each La Union departure.
Edificio Ferrocarril Nacional, La Ceiba, Atlántida, Honduras