Post Hurricane ETA Travel Update
As you read through the news, and especially check the social media and online news, you will conclude that Honduras has been destroyed by Hurricane Eta and that it is best not to travel here. Although it is true that some areas had damage, we have others with no damage at all! In an effort to help you determine what areas you can visit and how you can keep your plans to travel to Honduras, I have put together a short post Hurricane Eta travel update to keep you up to date.
The Bay Islands
All three of the Bay Islands of Honduras, Roatan, Utila and Guanaja are open for business. The islands had no damage from wind or rain, and resorts and services are open to travelers. Although air and maritime travel were limited for a few days it is totally reestablished. The Roatan Juan Manuel Galvez International Airport is open and receiving both domestic and international flights. The Roatan Ferry, Galaxy Wave is operating normally, with two daily trips between Roatan and La Ceiba. Service was down for a couple of days due to weather conditions.
As for Utila, the island is open, and the Utila Dream Ferry is operating once a day between La Ceiba and Utila. A second trip, between both destinations operates on Fridays and Sundays. The Utila Dream is offering service from Utila to Roatan once a week on Saturdays.
Guanaja is open for business, the airport is operational, but I recommend you check with your resort before travel, as the local government was requiring a PCR Covid test with negative results.
Please note that the because the San Pedro Sula airport is closed, the Roatan airport is a great alternative to fly into Honduras if you are bound to the Bay Islands or the north coast of Honduras. There are regular flights from Roatan to Tegucigalpa and La Ceiba.
Caribbean Coast of Honduras
The coastal cities in Honduras, including La Ceiba, Tela, Trujillo, Omoa and Puerto Cortes did not sustain direct damage from Hurricane Eta. However, many of the rivers that flow into the Caribbean Sea were above flood stage due to excess rains in the mountains of Honduras. All these cities are open, and few hotels had any damage. Perhaps you can see the most obvious damage in the beaches. A lot of debris brought by the flooding rivers has them with much litter. The local governments and entrepreneurs are cleaning the beaches up and you will find no trace of the storm by the end of the week. Efforts are being made to open the La Ceiba international airport as an alternative to travelers that were headed towards San Pedro Sula. The highway between both cities is open as we speak. Access to Trujillo is not easy, since de Aguan River was over flood stage. The main CA13 highway between La Ceiba and Trujillo lost several bridges. An alternate road, via the city of Sonaguera, on the north side of the Aguan River is open.
San Pedro Sula
The Sula Valley took the brunt of the storm. This fertile valley has two of the largest rivers in Central America flowing through it. The mighty Ulua and Chamelecon rivers. These rivers have flooded an extensive area, including many suburbs of the Metropolitan Sula Valley area. The city itself is perfectly operational. However the airport sustained severe damage, as water was up over 5 feet over the runway and airport terminal. Authorities expect the airport will remain shut for 35 days. This means that flights will not be landing there before the 10th of December at the earliest. You will need to use an alternate airport into Honduras if you were planning to travel to San Pedro Sula between now and then. Efforts are being made to use the Goloson International Airport in La Ceiba as an alternative while the San Pedro Sula Airport reopens.
A second alternative would be to use Toncontin International Airport in Tegucigalpa. This airport is open without any restrictions. However, some airlines, such as Aeromexico and Spirit Air do not offer service to Tegucigalpa.
Copan Ruinas saw its river jump its banks once again. By some reports, it was even worse that during Hurricane Mitch 22 years ago. Fortunately, the Archaeological Park did not suffer damage. The town is open. The brand-new highway did very well under the stressful conditions of so much rain and has no damage to speak of. However, the Archaeological Park is not open. I do hope that this post Hurricane ETA Travel update is useful!