Where is Honduras located?

What countries border Honduras?

Honduras Weather

What is the current weather in Honduras?


Honduras Facts and Culture

What is Honduras famous for?

  • Family: Men in Honduras are encouraged to be strong, unemotional and assertive. Traditionally, they earn money to support the family. Today... More
  • Fashion: Men in the larger cities may wear a decorative shirt that hangs just below the waist called a "guayabera" rather... More
  • Visiting: Visiting others is commonly done and and appointment is not usually needed. Guests are usually offer light refreshment and refusing... More
  • Recreation: The Honduran national sport is soccer. Baseball is another very popular sport. Many girls prefer dancing to sports. Girls learn... More
  • Cultural Attributes: Hondurans are people who are warm, friendly, courteous, and caring despite many hardships. Hondurans feel a sense of responsibility for... More
  • Diet: Common foods include plantains (similar to bananas), cassava and peppers. People enjoy tamales (made of ground corn and filled with... More

Honduras Facts

What is the capital of Honduras?

Capital Tegucigalpa
Government Type presidential republic
Currency HNL
Total Area 43,278 Square Miles
112,090 Square Kilometers
Location Central America, bordering the Caribbean Sea, between Guatemala and Nicaragua and bordering the Gulf of Fonseca (North Pacific Ocean), between El Salvador and Nicaragua
Language Spanish, Amerindian dialects
GDP - real growth rate 3.5%
GDP - per capita (PPP) $5,000.00 (USD)

Honduras Demographics

What is the population of Honduras?

Ethnic Groups mestizo (mixed Amerindian and European) 90%, Amerindian 7%, black 2%, white 1%
Nationality Adjective Honduran
Nationality Noun Honduran(s)
Population 9,235,340
Population - note note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected
Population Growth Rate 1.79%
Population in Major Urban Areas TEGUCIGALPA (capital) 1.088 million
Predominant Language Spanish, Amerindian dialects
Urban Population 52.2%

Honduras Government

What type of government does Honduras have?

  • Executive Branch: chief of state: President Juan Orlando HERNANDEZ Alvarado (since 27 January 2014); Vice Presidents Ricardo ALVAREZ, Maria RIVERA, and Olga... More
  • Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory More
  • Citizenship: citizenship by birth: yes citizenship by descent: yes dual citizenship recognized: yes residency requirement for naturalization: 1 to 3 years More
  • National Holiday: Independence Day, 15 September (1821) More
  • Constitution: history: several previous; latest approved 11 January 1982, effective 20 January 1982 amendments: proposed by the National Congress with at least... More
  • Independence: 15 September 1821 (from Spain) More

Honduras Geography

What environmental issues does Honduras have?

  • Overview: The Republic of Honduras is situated in the middle of six republics comprising, along with Belize, the Central American Isthmus... More
  • Climate: The climate in Honduras varies between the mountainous interior and the coastal lowlands and between the Pacific and Caribbean coasts.... More
  • Border Countries: Guatemala 256 km, El Salvador 342 km, Nicaragua 922 km More
  • Environment - Current Issues: urban population expanding; deforestation results from logging and the clearing of land for agricultural purposes; further land degradation and soil... More
  • Environment - International Agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone... More
  • Terrain: mostly mountains in interior, narrow coastal plains More

Honduras Economy

How big is the Honduras economy?

Honduras News & Current Events

What current events are happening in Honduras?
Source: Google News

Interesting Honduras Facts

What unique things can you discover about Honduras?

  • Although Honduras is a predominantly Roman Catholic country, many couples do not get married in a church. Some live common-law, and others prefer to have a civil ceremony.
  • Among their athletes, Hondurans honour Caneja Cardona, who plays soccer for Honduras, and Leticia Castro, who played women's basketball for Honduras and was recognized as the best Central American player of her time.
  • Chickens and roosters are prominent in Honduran culture and folklore. One common expression is “este es mi gallo.” Literally translated, it means “This is my rooster,” but it has come to mean “This is mine and it is the best.”
  • Hondurans celebrate Language Day (marked by competitions in schools), Teachers' Day (when students bring teachers flowers, candy or fruit), Tree Day (when a pine tree is planted by each student), and Environment Day (celebrating trees, plants, animals and water). Hondurans celebrate Mother's Day, Father's Day and Children's Day as well.
  • Honduras was originally known as Higüeras, the name of a native plant. Christopher Columbus named the land Honduras, which means “deep waters,” because he landed in a bay off the north coast of Honduras that was very deep.
  • In 1830, Francisco Morazán, a Honduran military leader, was elected president of the United Provinces of Central America. He worked to improve education, the justice system and regional economic development. Many streets, parks and towns in Honduras are named after Morazán, who is considered the father of Central America.
  • In the past, students living in the countryside had to get up as early as 3:00 a.m. to do chores before walking several miles to school. When school ended at noon, they walked home during the hottest part of the day and did more chores. Today, with improved transportation, students in the countryside get up at about 5:00 a.m.
  • Lucila Gamero de Medina (1873-1964) wrote the first Honduran novel to be published. In 1893, when she was only 20 years old, she published her first two novels, Amalia Montiel and Adriana y Margarita, which are still read today.
  • Many Hondurans grow pineapples in their gardens. Every part of the pineapple is used for something. The skin is used to make tea, chicha or vinegar for preserving vegetables. The fruit is used to make juice, jam or pies. The tops are put in buckets of water until they sprout roots and can be replanted in the garden.
  • Some Hondurans believe that foods and herbs are either “hot” or “cold.” When someone is ill, “hot” or “cold” foods or herbs may be prescribed, depending on the illness. Some of the “hot” foods are coffee, oranges and beef. “Cold” foods include coconuts, bananas, salt and seafood.
  • The “rain of fish” is a popular theme in Honduran painting. It is based on a phenomenon that occurred in the department of Yoro in north-central Honduras. People there awoke one morning after a thunderstorm and found the ground covered with fish. This phenomenon still occurs from time to time.
  • The country's main commercial forest product is pine, although Honduras was once well-known for its mahogany.
  • The Garífuna or Black Caribs are mixed-race descendants of Africans and Carib Indians from the Caribbean island of St. Vincent, who were deported by the British and sent to Central America in the late 18th century.
  • The name of the Honduran capital city, Tegucigalpa, comes from two indigenous words: teguz, which means hill, and galpa, which means silver. Tegucigalpa was once a silver mining town.
  • Traditional Catholic funerals include a ritual called novena. For nine nights, close friends and family pray at the saint's altar in the home of the person who has died. A novena may be held on the six-month as well as the one-year anniversary of the death.
  • Very few people have cars, because cars and gasoline are expensive. Most people in cities travel by taxi or bus. People in rural areas walk or get a ride in a pick-up truck.

Watch video on Honduras

What can you learn about Honduras in this video?

Honduras, A Central American Gem YouTube: Irena Vision

Honduras Travel Information

What makes Honduras a unique country to travel to?

Country Description

Honduras is a democracy with a developing economy bordered by the Caribbean Sea to the north and the Pacific Ocean to the south. The national language is Spanish, although English is often spoken in the Bay Islands. The climate is generally temperate, with dry and wet seasons. During the dry season from February into May, widespread forest fires and agricultural burning can severely degrade air quality throughout the country, possibly causing respiratory problems and airport closures. The terrain includes mountainous areas, coastal beaches, and jungle lowlands. Facilities that would normally be used by tourists, including hotels and restaurants, are generally adequate in the capital city of Tegucigalpa, in San Pedro Sula, Tela, La Ceiba, the Bay Islands, and near the Copan ruins. Large sections of the country, however, lack basic public services or a governmental presence. Currency exchange is readily available at banks and hotels in the major cities.

Crime

Crime is widespread in Honduras and requires a high degree of caution by U.S. visitors and residents alike. U.S. citizens have been the victims of a wide range of crimes, including murder, kidnapping, rape, assault, and property crimes. Widespread poverty and unemployment, along with significant street gang and drug trafficking activity, have contributed to the extremely high crime rate. In January 2012, the Peace Corps suspended its program in Honduras in order to review the safety and security of its volunteers.

According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime 2011 Global Study on Homicide, Honduras has the highest per capita homicide rate in the world, with 86 homicides for every 100,000 inhabitants. Although crime and violent crime occur in all parts of Honduras, the north coast and central portions of the country have historically had the country’s highest crime rates. Copan, Roatan/Bay Islands, and other tourist destinations have lower crime rates than other parts of the country.

Since 1995, 115 U.S. citizens were reported murdered in Honduras; of these, just 32 cases have been resolved. Three U.S. citizens were reported murdered in Honduras between January and September 2013.

Since 2010, nine U.S. citizens have been reported as victims of rape or sexual assault in Honduras, signaling an increasing trend in these types of crimes. Two U.S. citizens reported incidents of rape or sexual assault between January and September 2013. Perpetrators of sexual assaults are often armed.

Kidnappings have occurred in recent years, with large ransoms paid and infrequent capture of the kidnappers. One U.S. citizen was reported kidnapped between January and September 2013..

U.S. citizens are primarily the victims of opportunistic crime. There is no evidence suggesting criminals specifically target U.S. citizens, but foreigners have been targeted for crime due to their perceived wealth. Weapons abound in Honduras, and armed street robberies are especially common, with criminals taking advantage of relatively isolated victims to steal their valuables. Young males working in pairs, often riding motorcycles, are perpetrating many of the armed robberies in Honduras’ urban areas. Criminals and pickpockets target visitors as they enter and depart airports and hotels, so visitors should consider carrying their passports and valuables in a concealed pouch. We have also confirmed reports of armed robbers traveling in private cars targeting pedestrians on isolated streets.

Incidents of crime along roads, including carjacking and kidnapping, are common in Honduras. There have been frequent incidents of carjacking and highway robbery on a number of roads including the main highway (CA-5) between San Pedro Sula and Siguatepeque, with the greatest risk between Potrerillos and Pito Solo in the lake area. Travelers should always drive with their doors locked and windows rolled up to avoid potential robberies at traffic lights and other places, such as congested downtown streets. Avoid driving at night. All bus travel should be during daylight hours and on first-class conveyances, not economy buses. Choose taxis carefully, and note the driver’s name and license number. Instruct the driver not to pick up other passengers, agree on the fare before you depart, and have small bills available for payment, as taxi drivers often do not make change. When possible, travel in groups.

Incidents of piracy off the coast of Honduras can occur. In 2012, a U.S. citizen reported that his boat was boarded and his passengers were the victims of an armed robbery while sailing in Honduran waters near Puerto Cortes, three miles north of Punta Sal. In 2011, a Canadian citizen was killed in a similar incident. U.S. citizens should exercise caution while sailing or mooring in Honduran waters.

U.S. citizens are encouraged to be vigilant of their surroundings at all times, especially when entering or exiting their homes, cars, garages, schools, and workplaces. It is also recommended that drivers vary their routes and schedules so as to not create a predictable routine. Individuals should also limit the sharing of personal information and closely screen personal employees. Should a U.S. citizen be kidnapped, local authorities and the U.S. Embassy should be contacted immediately.

The Honduran government conducts occasional joint police/military patrols in major cities in an effort to reduce crime. However, Honduran law enforcement authorities’ ability to prevent, respond to, and investigate criminal incidents and prosecute criminals is limited. Honduran police generally do not speak English. The government has established a special tourist police in the resort town of Tela and other tourist destinations including Tegucigalpa, San Pedro Sula, La Ceiba, and Roatan, but the number of tourist police deployed is small and coverage is limited.

The Basilica of Suyapa in Tegucigalpa, also known as Suyapa Church or Cathedral, is an important religious site and popular tourist destination. However, it is situated in a high crime area and has been the site of numerous armed robberies and thefts. U.S. citizens in Honduras on U.S. government orders are only allowed to visit the Basilica of Suyapa with an organized tour group that provides armed security for the group.

The San Pedro Sula area has seen armed robberies against tourist vans, minibuses, and cars traveling from the airport to area hotels, and there have also been armed robberies along the road to Copan. Armed men have forced vehicles transporting tourists off the road and robbed the victims, occasionally assaulting the driver or passengers. In past years, several U.S. citizens have been murdered in San Pedro Sula and La Ceiba shortly after arriving in the country. Assaults in these areas may be based on tips from sources at airport arrival areas, so visitors are strongly urged to exercise caution in discussing travel plans in public.

Although Copan, Roatan/Bay Islands, and other tourist destinations have a lower crime rate than other parts of the country, thefts, break-ins, assaults, and murders do occur. Exercise particular caution walking on isolated beaches, especially at night. Coxen Hole on the island of Roatan should be avoided after dark.

The Government of Honduras has a very limited law enforcement presence in some northern coastal areas, including parts of the departments of Olancho, Colon, and Gracias a Dios. These areas are well known for narcotics smuggling and violence. Travelers in those areas should use extra caution. See the description of highways/areas to be avoided in the “Traffic Safety and Road Conditions” section below for details.

Do not buy counterfeit and pirated goods, even if they are widely available. Not only are the bootlegs illegal in the United States, if you purchase them you may also be breaking local law and be subject to local penalties.

Criminal Penalties

While you are traveling in Honduras, you are subject to its laws even if you are a U.S. citizen. Foreign laws and legal systems can be vastly different from our own. In some places, you may be taken in for questioning if you do not have your passport with you. Penalties for possession, use, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Honduras are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines. There are also some activities that might be legal in the country you visit but illegal in the United States; for example, you can be prosecuted under U.S. law if you buy pirated goods. Engaging in sexual conduct with children or using or disseminating child pornography in a foreign country is a crime prosecutable in the United States. If you break local laws in Honduras, your U.S. passport will not help you avoid arrest or prosecution. It is very important to know what is legal and what is not in Honduras.

If you are arrested in Honduras, you have the right to request the authorities to alert the U.S. Embassy. Doing so ensures that consular officers are aware of your condition and can provide you with appropriate consular assistance.

Medical Facilities and Health Information

Medical care in Honduras varies greatly in quality and availability. Outside of Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula, medical care is inadequate to address complex situations. Support staff facilities and necessary equipment and supplies are not up to U.S. standards anywhere in Honduras. Facilities for advanced surgical procedures are not available. Wide areas of the country, including the popular tourist areas of the Bay Islands, do not have a general surgery hospital. Ambulance services are limited in major cities and almost non-existent elsewhere. Emergency services may be contacted directly through their local numbers, including 199 for the national emergency line and 195 for the local Red Cross.

The U.S. Embassy encourages visitors who are considering medical care in Honduras to obtain as much information about the facility and the medical personnel as possible. Medical tourists should confirm that the facilities they are considering are accredited, purchase medical evacuation insurance before traveling, and confirm that the cost and payment for their treatment is clearly understood by both parties. In addition to other publicly available information, U.S. citizens may consult the U.S. Embassy’s website for a list of hospitals and air ambulance services..

Scuba diving is popular in the Bay Islands, but limited medical facilities there pose a special risk in the event of an emergency. There is a decompression chamber on Roatan and Utila for divers, but no advanced medical care on either island for diving related accidents.

Mosquito-borne illnesses are a problem in Honduras. Malaria is present throughout the country at altitudes

Safety and Security

All travelers to Honduras should review the Department of State’s Travel Warning for Honduras,which provides detailed information about security issues affecting many parts of the country, including the major cities.

Demonstrations

Political demonstrations occur frequently in the major cities of Honduras. During demonstrations, protestors frequently block public roads. Police may use tear gas, water cannons, or rubber bullets to disperse demonstrators. Travelers should avoid areas where demonstrations are taking place and never try to pass roadblocks. U.S. citizens may stay informed by visiting the U.S. Embassy website, following the local news, and consulting hotel personnel and tour guides.

Other Threats

While the Honduran side of the Honduras-Nicaragua border has been largely cleared of land mines, travelers should exercise caution there.

Honduras is vulnerable to hurricanes, heavy rains, and flooding. The rainy season extends between June and November. Honduras’ National Emergency Management Commission (COPECO) issues national alerts. Visit the COPECO website for current alerts.

Traffic Safety and Road Conditions

While in Honduras, you may encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the United States. The information below concerning Honduras is provided for general reference only, and may not be totally accurate in a particular location or circumstance.

Because of crime, poor road conditions, and heavy commercial truck traffic, driving can be very dangerous, and travelers should carry a cellular phone in case of an emergency. Travelers should exercise extreme caution while driving on isolated stretches of road and passing on mountainous curves. Rockslides are common, especially in the rainy season (May through December). Traffic signs, even on major highways, are often inadequate, and streets in the major cities are often unmarked. Travelers should always drive with their doors locked and windows rolled up to avoid potential robberies at traffic lights and other places such as congested downtown streets. Honduran roads are poorly lit and poorly marked. Vehicles are often driven at night without adequate illumination, and animals and people wander onto the roads at all hours. For these reasons, and because of the high incidence of crime, the U.S. Embassy discourages car and bus travel after dark.

Major cities are connected by an inconsistently maintained system of paved roads. While the main road network is being upgraded and widened in key positions, most of it consists of only two lanes.

Significant construction on the highway between Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula will likely continue through 2013, so drivers can expect delays. Many secondary roads in Honduras are unpaved. During the rainy season, even major highways are often closed due to rockslides and flooding from heavy rains.

In the event of an accident, contact the Honduran Transit Authority (“Transito”) immediately. It may be contacted either directly through local numbers, or through the national emergency number, 199. Honduran law requires that no vehicles involved in an accident be moved until Transit Authority agents arrive, not even to clear a traffic obstruction, unless you are in serious physical danger. Besides informing the Transit Authority, car insurance companies should be notified as soon as possible. Personal identification documents, including driver’s licenses, copies of passports, and vehicle registration cards should be carried while driving.

In addition to incidents of carjacking and robbery on the main highway, CA-5, between San Pedro Sula and Siguatepeque in the lake area, similar incidents have occurred on the highway between San Pedro Sula and Tela, with the greatest risk near the palm tree plantations near El Progreso. These carjackings and robberies have targeted SUVs and usually occur at night; therefore, driving at night is highly discouraged. In Olancho, on the road from Juticalpa to Telica, and from the turn off to Gualaco on Route 39 to San Esteban and Bonito Oriental, rival criminal elements have engaged in violent acts against one another. Travelers should avoid this road. In addition, delivery trucks throughout Honduras are common targets of highway robberies.

Some of the most dangerous stretches for road travel include: Tegucigalpa to Choluteca, because of dangerous mountain curves, and El Progreso to La Ceiba, because of animal crossings and the poor condition of bridges from flooding. On July 11, 2011, a bus overturned nine miles after Santa Rosa de Copan en route to San Pedro Sula, killing ten people and injuring 20.

The only recommended route to the north coast from the south is CA-5 to route 21 to CA-13 via Tela to La Ceiba and Trujillo. Hijackings of private and commercial vehicles from the United States to Honduras have occurred. While Honduras and the United States have signed and ratified a Stolen Vehicle Treaty, existing Honduran laws protect good faith buyers (even of stolen vehicles), so the recovery and return of these vehicles to their original owners is not guaranteed. Vehicle insurance may mitigate loss; please check with the National Insurance Crime Bureau or with private insurance carriers about coverage details.

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