The Cacao Lagoon: A Paradise in the Mangrove Swamps of Nombre de Dios National Park
East of La Ceiba, and within the Nombre de Dios National Park, the Cacao Lagoon is a small jewel. Here you will enjoy the beauty and serenity of a mangrove forest and marine estuaries. The lagoon is about 30 km. (19 miles) east of La Ceiba. It is past the communities of Corozal and Sambo Creek on Highway CA13. You will see a sign on the road that says Aldea Cacao and Cacao Lagoon on the left side of the road. Take the dirt road to the left and follow it till the end. You will soon arrive at the visitor’s center. There you will register and pay your entrance fee and arrange your tour.
You have two different options to explore the area. The first is to take a sea kayak and paddle yourself around the lagoon. The other is to go on a larger dugout canoe that can take up to 8 persons. If you choose the second, you can help paddle or simply relax while you are slowly transported across the lagoon and into mangrove canals. Access to your boat is via an elevated walkway over the mangrove swamps. This leads to a deck in the deeper parts of the lagoon. You will love seeing the swamp from the comfort of the walkway.
There are no motor boats in the lagoon. You will enjoy the peace and quiet in this natural setting. Listen to the sounds of nature, including the noisy howler monkey troops. They live within the mangrove forests surrounding the lagoon. If you are into bird watching, make sure you bring your binoculars with you. Whatever you do, do not forget your camera! A hat, sun block and a bottle of water are always a good idea!