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Old 10-04-2009, 14:07   #1
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Liveaboard in Roatan

Hi folks. My girlfriend and I are in the planning stages of purchasing a 26-28 ft sailboat which we plan to take to Roatan. I lived on the island for a year, but I was a landlubber and I have several questions about living there on a boat which I was hoping you guys could help me figure out.

1. I would like to moor in West End/West Bay, which I have seen many other boats do. Do you know if it is free to use these moorings? If it is not free, is it possible to affix your own mooring?

2. What do folks do when Northers come in? I am assuming they move to the South side of the island, but where? Is it possible to anchor for free anywhere that is protected, or would I need to pay for a slip at a marina?

3. What is security like? Crime is definitely an issue on the island, so what do people do to secure their boats? Is there a safe place to leave a dinghy that is on the shore near the moorings, or would I be better off dinghying all the way to Half Moon Bay every day?

Thank you very much for your help. This information will help me determine whether or not this plan is feasible. Safe sailing. -Jake

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Old 10-04-2009, 15:51   #2
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Panhandle Florida
Boat: 48' Hi Star
Posts: 211
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Here is a link to a cruising log of a couple who are currently on Roatan, on a "motor" boat, no less!!!

They have a lot of information, and you can contact them through the "Leave a Message" tab on thier site.

Personal Trip Journal - Back to the Islands

Happy cruising!

How can I get lost?? I don't know where I'm going!
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Old 10-04-2009, 20:22   #3
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Thank you very much, this is a very informative blog. I will definitely read this one all the way through. -Jake
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Old 04-06-2009, 06:57   #4
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Alabama Gulf Coast & Alaska
Boat: Jeanneau SO37-37ft.-Sun Dog
Posts: 139
We cruised the Bay Islands in Feb.-March 2008 and were at West End for a few weeks. You can check into Honduras at Utila which would be the first of the Bay Islands you come to if coming from Belize or Rio Dulce, Guatemala which is the route most people take. It is a day sail from Utila to West End, Roatan but can be a rough one if the easterly trades are blowing hard. At West End there is an entrance channel through the reef that is marked with one buoy. Once past the reef you will see several small mooring balls. They were free last year. But there are not many and in the height of the cruising season may all be taken unless more were installed. They were put in by the local Park authority and in my opionion were poorly installed and with inadequate lines. You should be prepared to dive on them about 15 to 20 feet and attach your own lines if you feel they are inadequate. West End is a national marine sanctuary and you should pay a visit to their office on the main street in West End to get their rules literature. They are likely to visit you in a small launch if you are new to the area. They are pleasant people and just want to inform you of the park rules. There is a dinghy dock that is secure during the daytime at the Barefoot Restaurant and Bar which is much closer than going to Half Moon Bay. You can also buy bottled water at the restaurant in 5 gallon jugs. There is a gringo who lives nearby who has an laundry and an ice making business which is fairly inexpensive considering that Roatan is the most expensive place in Honduras. Regarding northers. The reef provides good protection from all the seas that result from thevery strongest winds when they start blowing from the west and norhwest. Lots of people sit it out, especially those on moorings. But some leave, knowing that the moorings were not truly professional installed. Lots of place to run to on the south side. Most choose to go to French Harbor when the northers hit. Regarding crime. Utila had a worse reputation than Roatan. Never heard of any big problems. Most people just tied their dinks up with a painter at the docks and would not lock up during the daytime. But you always gotta lock up at night anywhere but to be safe you should always lock up your dinghy and the motor locked to the dink. How long do you plan on living on a 26 foot boat? That boat will be quite small for 2 people for an extended period. Cabin fever could be your biggest challenge.
S/V Sun Dog
37' Jeanneau
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