Roatan and the Bay Islands Hotels

The Bay Islands offer visitors lodging options from nearly every point on the pricing scale and can accommodate guests for stays as short as one night or as long as a year. Rooms range from neat and rustic diving hotels to astoundingly luxurious beachfront villas, satisfying budgets of all levels. Prices elevate slightly during the high season, typically from January to June, with rates peaking

around Christmas and Holy Week. September is considered the best month to visit, as it narrowly misses both the high season and rainy season.

Roatán is bursting with all-inclusive resorts, many of which feature dive schools, spas, condos, and family-oriented activities. The HM Resorts brand manages seven hotels and resorts. West Bay is home to most of these properties, although Parrot Tree Plantation, Fantasy Island, and Turquoise Bay are located toward the island's center. Dive hotels and bed-and-breakfasts are concentrated in West End, whose one-mile beachfront strip of restaurants, bars, and nightlife attracts Roatán's younger crowd. Sandy Bay has boutique hotels, bed and breakfasts, cabins, and Anthony's Key Resort. Outside of the western end of the island and select resort spots, however, you'll only find hospedajes (small, very basic hotels) or local motels.

Utila Town, on the island's southeast end, is home to a slew of dive resorts and charming beachfront hotels. Lodging at most dive schools is open to everyone, but divers are given priority if space becomes tight. If you're a light sleeper, opt for a place just outside the town center; a 15-minute walk from the heart of the action can buffer nearly all of the sound of barhoppers at night. Further south are the gorgeous campuses of Laguna Beach Resort and Utopia Dive Village. Larger-than-life mansions on the northeast end are secluded and face the open turquoise waters. Some houses are private, but others are rentals ideal for groups of five or more.

Lodging is limited in Guanaja. Only a few all-inclusive dive resorts remain after competitors shuttered up following damage inflicted by Hurricane Mitch in 1998. Bonacca has a couple of budget motels with basic accommodations. Graham's Place, on a private key just off the main island, is hands down the most well suited place for tourists in Guanaja. If you've got a little extra to spend, the Villa at Dunbar Rock offers private luxury combined with some of the most pristine diving in Guanaja.

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