While Honduras has historically been exploited by colonial powers and the US, and much of its vegetation claimed for cash crops, it retains loads of natural beauty. Visitors are treated to Caribbean islands and beaches, jungles and large tracts of barely touched landscapes. Much of Central America’s second largest country remains relatively unexplored, with cloud forest reserves and other isolated mountain regions waiting for the intrepid traveller keen to get off the well-tramped path.
Add in wildlife wonders, some enchanting ruins, a fascinating recent history and the chance to encounter resilient and intriguing people. All that, and the chicken buses.
Possibly the cheapest place in the world to dive, you can get Padi-qualified for as little as US$130 on the pretty reefs of northern Honduras’ Bay Islands, which also boasts the chance to interact with elusive whale sharks.
A startling collection of elaborately carved stonework, the ruins of Copán has its own Mayan charisma.
Honduras offers a couple of attractive options for doing a Spanish course, paticularly La Ceiba and Tela on the Caribbean side if you’re in the area to do some diving. A few schools seem to have spilled over the border into the charming Copan Ruinas as well, though they forgot to bring the super-low prices with them.