If you are on Carnival Cruise, and you have Roatan as a port of call, you will more than likely dock at Mahogany Bay. Why? Because this area is owned by the Carnival Corporation. Once you make your way through the shopping area, before you can enter the beach area, you must show your ship ID card to the security guard, or you cannot enter. This port was our second stop on the second 5-day cruise, and we were there from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
The beach area is very nice, and the swimming area is roped off. I’ve always seen the water very calm. If you want to snorkel, you can walk farther down the beach and walk out to the end of the boardwalk. Then, you use the ladder to go into the water and swim out to the reef.
The last time we snorkeled there, the reef still looked healthy, and the fish were plentiful. However, some people either don’t know or don’t care that you are not supposed to stand on coral. It will kill the reef and could cut/infect your skin. I don’t know if lifeguards still watch out for those who stand on the reef, but they did when we were there. I hope they do. It would be a shame if that coral gets killed.
This was the only place I have ever spotted a small seahorse. I was so excited. Of course, I didn’t have my underwater camera at the time. Sigh.
The area also has water sports equipment to rent such as canoes, floating mats, etc. There is an area that you can purchase a massage, and an area to play sand volleyball. There are also restaurants in the area. Some people think since Carnival owns the area, that the food and drink in this area are either complimentary like on the ship or you can charge them to your shipboard account. Nope. These restaurants are owned by vendors. Bring your cash or credit card.
There are three ways to reach the beach area from the ship – walk the sidewalk, walk the scenic shortcut, or take the sky lift (an upcharge). We usually walked the scenic shortcut, but it is a dirt path, and you have to watch for branches and roots.
I love this beach area, but you are not limited to staying in this area. If you want to explore the rest of Roatan, Carnival has plenty of tours and there are many independent vendors and taxi drivers who will be happy to show you around. You will access the independent operators outside the shopping area. Our first visit here, we took an island tour that included ziplining and holding monkeys. I think the tour includes holding baby sloths now too.
Whatever you do, I know you will have fun.
Fun times in Roatan:
These are the photos I took of the port this trip:
Roatán is an island in the Caribbean, about 40 miles off the northern coast of Honduras and is only 40 miles long and three miles wide
The Indians of the Bay Islands are believed to have been related to either the Paya, the Maya, the Lenca or the Jicaque, which were the tribes present on the mainland.
The majority permanent population of Roatán originated from the Cayman Islands.
Roatan is home to the second largest coral reef in the world, the Mesoamerican Reef.
By the 17th Century, more than 5,000 pirates lived on the island of Roatan including Blackbeard, Van Horn, and Henry Morgan.
It is prohibited to build a building higher than 3 stories.
Many traditional beach homes on Roatan are built on stilts to protect from sand flies which can only fly a few feet vertically.
In 2011, Carnival Corporation built Mahogany Bay at the cost of 62 million US dollars.
The port has a capacity to receive over 8,000 cruise passengers.
One of the most unusual attractions at the port is “fish therapy” where people soak their feet and dozens of tiny little fish eat all the dead skin cells.
Trivia provided by Wikipedia.