Might be the best way to describe Utila. Located approximately 18 miles off the north coast of mainland Honduras, Utila is the smallest and least developed of the three main Bay Islands.
The Bay Islands has developed under the 300 year influence of the British, and as such English is what the locals speak with a unique accent. It has historically been a fishing based community; still largely practiced by the community in the nearby Keys.
A lush canopy of pine, mango, almond, and palm trees covers most of the island, providing a haven for tropical birds, rare lizards and iguanas. A hill on the northeast coast dominates the landscape and is named Pumpkin Hill for its round, sloping shape. It is the largest and most visible hill on the island, a rumored lookout point for pirates in the old days!
The island is mostly uninhabited, split down the middle by a mangrove channel. The town of Utila in East Harbor is the home of the 12,000 residents and the island's center of activity. Softly faded pastels on shuttered wooden homes, often precariously perched above stilts and over 100 years old, sweep you into an era past.
The beaches of Utila are located at either end of the village. There are many ways to enjoy Utila while you are not diving, they include, ECO tours, horseback activities, hiking to historic points around the island, visiting the freshwater or bat caves, snorkeling, and sunbathing on the beach with a good book. These are just a few of the most popular ways to spend your free time.
Located right on Utila's ferry dock are the government offices for visas, passports and mail. Internet access can be found in the center and reasonable rates on long distance calls are available right across the street.
There is a wide variety of accommodation available; from simplistic rooms costing only a few dollars a night for the budget traveler, to luxury beach front homes to rent. If you are going to be joining us as a certified diver or as a student we will be happy to help reserve your choice here in Utila.
There is one bank on Utila, located on the main street and open Monday to Friday, and Saturday mornings. There are also two cash withdrawal (ATM) machines, and the bank offers cash advances, money exchange.
Be aware the local businesses charge approximately a 4% fee when you use your credit card. You can avoid this by pre-booking and paying on line with our Pay Pal account, as the bank fee is typically between 3-5%.
Check www.aboutUtila.com for more detailed and up-to-date information about our little island.