Punta Gorda is a tranquil town on the northeast end of Roatán, where travelers can catch a glimpse of the enduring Garífuna culture that hails back to the 18th century. On April 12, residents celebrate their ancestors' arrival to the island with a daylong carnival of dancing, drinking, and rhythmic percussion. Uninterrupted views of azure reefs once attracted dive hotels to the beachfront community, but the resorts have since closed up shop, and only a few local eateries serving traditional seafood remain. As tourism increases, the local Garífuna community often invites visitors into their homes or restaurants, where you can learn traditional dances, hear more about their history, and try machuca (conch stew), the most well-known Garífuna dish. A wood sign along the main highway directs drivers down a steep hill into town.
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