The Bay Islands are a part of the world’s second largest barrier reef system.
The Bay Islands consists of Roatan, Utila and Guanaja, island groups off the coast of Venezuela. There is greatly diversified wall diving at each of the islands where the walls can start at fifteen, forty or even sixty feet. The reefs along these walls are abundant in stony corals and colorful sponges.
Endless diving opportunities are to be found including dolphindives, walls, volcanic tunnels, shallows, whale shark encounters and lots of dazzling soft corals and sponges. You can also explore canyons, ridges and stunning walls rich in marine life.
Best Diving Destinations in Bay Islands
Explore the sheer walls of the largest and most develped island called Roatan. You will find dive sites such as Eel’s Garden, Port Royal, and the Enchanted Forest, all complete with enormous stands of black coral, brilliantly colored elephant ear sponges and delicate blue bell tunicates.
Guanaja and Utila are similar but much smaller. Because of their remote location and fewer accommodations and therefor less divers in the water it can be better diving than the more developed Roatan.
Off the Island of Guanaja there is the Jado Trader, a cargo boat deliberately sunk several years ago to make a good wreck dive. The 160 ft ship rests in about 100 ft of water and is home to numerous sea creatures.
Utila is the most remote of them all and famous for its whale shark encounters. Click here for a description of Utila dive sites
The two main islands of Cayos Cochinos hold such rare jewels as fingerprint tongues, wrasse blennies, sailfin blennies, painted tunicates, and richly colored encrusting sponges. While diving the area you could be joined by black tip sharks, eagle rays or turtles.
When to Visit Bay Islands
The rainy season is October through February. And that can reduce underwater visibility. Otherwise, expect sunshine and temperatures in the 80s°F (26°C). Storms from the north can blow and disrupt the diving but hurricanes are uncommon here.