We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

Which Roatan hotels are on sale?
dd/mm/yyyy dd/mm/yyyy
See hotels
Hagerstown, Maryland
Level Contributor
162 posts
109 reviews
Save Topic
Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

Obviously I'm worried about this enough to post a question about it, although when I imagine presenting this to you all it seems rather silly. I know it's a small island, and the owner of my property has told me that there's really only one main road in Roatan and you can't really get lost - but still. I wonder, without a GPS and a cell phone with a maps app (hello, technology-dependent!) how easy it will be to get around the island to go to places we want to get to?

We're staying in the East End (Punta Blanca, near Marble Hill Farms) in a rental property for two weeks. We're renting a car for the entire time we are there. Our property owner has given us directions from the airport to the house, and it seems like getting to the grocery stores on the way there is easy enough - but we have many places we want to go! All of the restaurants we've read about on TA, some excursions we want to do, snorkeling, etc. Will they be relatively easy to find without plugging in an address and going? I actually have quite a good sense of direction and feel like after a while I'll be fine, but it is my first time traveling outside of the country (besides on a cruise) and it's definitely my first time driving in a foreign country.

I looked into the International plan for my phone for the two weeks so I could possibly have that to use as a map and overall backup, but for one, it's really expensive and for two, you still have to pay extra for data usage. So I don't think I'll go that route. Our owner is giving us a cell phone to use and the house will have WIFI.

I hope this isn't a stupid question and perhaps someone before me has worried about this!

Thanks!

Utila, Honduras
Destination Expert
for Utila
Level Contributor
2,791 posts
274 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

you'll be located less than half a mile from the "main road" that runs the length of the island. getting "lost" anywhere on the island still means its hard to be more than a mile from that main road. it would be difficult to get lost for more than 20-30 minutes anywhere on roatan . plus its dry season at the moment so there's no mud on the dirt roads to get stuck in, i'm assuming you're going before october? i've never driven around there at night so i can't comment on driving home from restaurants that are on the western end of the island. might not be a great idea late at night

Edited: 29 April 2013, 21:53
Tegucigalpa...
Level Contributor
234 posts
Save Reply
2. Re: Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

If you got an android or iOS phone you may want to get an app with offline data, this means you wont need any roaming, not even data. Honduras has no road name, well at least we don't use them, but you can still navigate using the points of interest, in simple words you can look up Infinity Bay for example and it will pop up the place and hit go.

You can try www.kaartdata.com or search Kaartdata on iTunes or Google Play

Hagerstown, Maryland
Level Contributor
162 posts
109 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

I have an iPhone, so I will definitely check out that app, thank you! So restaurants and such don't have addresses?

Thanks for the info divenuts. I'm also wondering how do you even just get somewhere? How do you know where to do? I suppose I could always call them and ask for directions...

Oh, and we will be there the first two weeks of July.

Edited: 30 April 2013, 12:27
Utila, Honduras
Destination Expert
for Utila
Level Contributor
2,791 posts
274 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

getting directions is a good idea and don't be shy to ask if you get lost (island people are friendly). there is google maps which you could download and print. if you enlarge the roatan map enough (may need to print in two or three pieces) you can see the roads/towns/resorts are marked. there's also a new b&b in camp bay (a bit west of where you'll be staying) called the lost moose that serves nice food. typically its just for their guests but with prior arrangements they may do a dinner for you.

Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
228 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

Jen,

there is map of Roatan available at the airport car rentals. Free, because it is sponsored.

We used this to get around and we drove to the far east end of the island and back to West End.

We did not even need to use the iPhone. The map is great, because it gives a perfect overview, but it is detailed enough. And you can't run out of battery with a good old paper map :-)

People are very helpful, if you need to ask for directions.

Have fun!

Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
876 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

The first year we went to Roatan we just used cabs when we wanted to go somewhere, and that was fine. We got a feel for the place and learned how/where things were. The second year we rented for two weeks but avoided Coxen Hole, apart from a Sunday morning drive through. The third year we had a car for a month and all was well, apart from the one two way street in Coxen Hole that suddenly becomes an unmarked one way street.

So I would say to you that all you really need is a good map, stick to the main roads and to stay out of Coxen Hole. It's a neat place but not somewhere that a nervous or first time driver would enjoy.

Hagerstown, Maryland
Level Contributor
162 posts
109 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

That is great to know about the free map! That will be very helpful. And I also think that trying to scope out the locations of the restaurants/places to go beforehand will be helpful.

Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
876 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

Jen, send me your email address and I'll get you a decent scan of a Roatan map. This one is a few years old but it will be a starter map for you. I have a better one at home but I'm a few days away from there and I don't have a good scan of that one anyway. I can't post it up on TA or I'll get quashed for copywrite infringement, although it is a free map.

San Francisco...
Level Contributor
4 posts
4 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

In case you don't want to rent a car, we hired Juan Carlos Rodriguez (islandertours@yahoo.com) and he was great. We paid him to drive us around during our stay and it worked out well and we didn't have to think about it.

10. Re: Getting Around on Roatan in Rental Car

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 08 May 2014, 06:18