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Overview

The legendary “Mosquito Coast” (named not for an insect, but for the indigenous Miskito people) is the most remote and sparsely populated region in Central America, and the largest expanse of tropical rainforest north of the Amazon. No roads lead to La Moskitia — visitors arrive by small plane, or via a grueling land-and-water trek from La Ceiba. The traditional way to get around is by “pipante,” a dugout canoe with an outboard motor. Until recently, only the hardiest of adventure travelers could visit, but since 2006, when an international conservation group established the Ruta Moskitia alliance to help the locals earn income from ...

The legendary “Mosquito Coast” (named not for an insect, but for the indigenous Miskito people) is the most remote and sparsely populated region in Central America, and the largest expanse of tropical rainforest north of the Amazon. No roads lead to La Moskitia — visitors arrive by small plane, or via a grueling land-and-water trek from La Ceiba. The traditional way to get around is by “pipante,” a dugout canoe with an outboard motor. Until recently, only the hardiest of adventure travelers could visit, but since 2006, when an international conservation group established the Ruta Moskitia alliance to help the locals earn income from ecotourism, residents have trained as nature guides and upgraded their lodging to basic tourist standards. Still, there are no first-class resorts here — electricity and hot water are rare luxuries. Lodging is dirt cheap, but transport is expensive, because gas is shipped in from civilization at great expense. Traveling here requires patience, but a visit to the friendly Miskito, Pech, Garífuna, and Tawahka people in their tiny fishing villages is a fascinating cultural encounter, and the wildlife is virtually undisturbed. This vast expanse of lagoons, mangrove wetlands, tropical rain forest and pine savannah, much of it part of the Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve, is home to over 350 species of birds, as well as jungle cats and other rare mammals. Monkeys inhabit the trees, manatees paddle the lagoons and sea turtles nest on the beaches.

Charlie Morris
About the Expert

Charlie Morris is the author of the Open Road guidebooks Best of Honduras, Best of Costa Rica, Best of Belize, and Switzerland Guide.

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Charlie Morris for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: La Moskitia refers to the underdeveloped region of tropical rainforest accessible primarily by water and air in the northeastern part of Honduras.
  • Language: Spanish, Garifuna, Miskito
  • Currency: Honduras Lempira
  • Research: Honduras | Wikipedia
  • Weather: Rainfall | Daylight

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    January-April is the driest season, but the weather is variable, and often rainy.