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Paya Bay Resort
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Reviews (417)
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Reviewed June 21, 2012

We spent a week at Paya Bay earlier this month, and enjoyed our most relaxing vacation experience ever. The property is beautiful and serene, the service is friendly and attentive, and the experience can be as varied as you choose. While privacy abounded, there was a strong sense that we were part of the Paya/McNab family as soon as we arrived -- a full-service resort property with a true bed-and-breakfast feel.

Arrival and processing into Roatan on United via Houston was a breeze, and we were promptly greeted by Jose, who would be our driver for the week. The approximate 45-minute drive to Paya Bay was filled with great views and interesting scenes, and not as uncomfortable as others have reported. The paved highway ends about 10 minutes west of the property, but the dirt road was well maintained and easily-traveled. The property is well away from the tourist zones of West End and West Bay, which we found very appealing. Occupancy was low while we were there, but there were daily restaurant visitors. Regardless of occupancy or day visitors, there is plenty of room for privacy given three beach areas and multiple seating areas/hammock stations carved naturally into the landscape.

We doubt that one will find a more natural setting, with walking trails and paths carved throughout the dense vegetation, all leading to unique areas where one can escape. Bliss Beach and its splash pool couldn't be more serene; the nude areas are very private; and the yoga pavillion is magically set at the top of the property with an expansive view of the ocean and island to the west. It's clear that the preservation of the natural surroundings are paramount to the owners -- think the antithesis of Disney!

We were in 8A, a larger hilltop room with a king bed and plenty of space. Despite it being June in the tropics, we never turned on the air conditioning. A few open windows created an ocean breeze that kept the room very comfortable night and day. Room finishes aren't luxurious but are charming, bedding is very comfortable, and all the necessities are provided including an in-room refrigerator for cold water and libation. Food was very good, with an expansive, diverse menu dominated by fresh fish and chicken selections. Breakfast was great - Honduran coffee rocks! Favorites were the banana pancakes, fish empanadas, and the pastas. Dining room staff couldn't have been more accomodating, and knew who-liked-what on their salads and sandwiches within a day of arrival. Without request, a special meal - including the best grilled lobster we've ever eaten - was prepared to mark a special occasion for us, including a candle-lit outdoor table. Unexpected blessings!

Activities abound nearby, and Tom was eager to arrange to take the resort boat out for snorkeling or just a leisure run at any time upon our request (he also makes great cocktails!). We enjoyed daily yoga, snorkeling trips to the reef, a hike up Picacho, beachfront massages, a full day driving tour of the island with Jose, a day trip to Pigeon Cays, the mangrove tour, and a few evenings into Punta Gorda and Diamond Rock for some local flair -- yet still found plenty of time to relax mindlessly on the beaches. The Pigeon Cay trip is a can't miss, with a very enjoyable 1.5 hours boat ride followed by a picnic and snorkeling on a small island with spectacular, crystal clear waters. Owners and staff truly catered to us individually, with Tom taking the boat out for just the two of us and DaVinci leading yoga and evening excursions with the just the two of us.

Our opinion regarding concerns that have been posted by others about Paya Bay:
- We found the negative reports of sand fleas and other bugs to be much exaggerated, although we did have good breezes most days. A touch of bug spray on the calm days and at dusk did the trick, save for a few sand flea bites which were more of a nuisance than a discomfort.
- We thought Paya Bay (and Roatan in general) was a good value relative to similar tropical destinations. Good meals can be had on property and elsewhere for $10 or less, beer on property is $2.50, and excursion prices were fair.
- We traveled throughout the island and its waters by day, visited local communities by night, and kept windows and the balcony door open our entire stay. Never did we feel remotely unsafe, nor encounter anyone that felt threatening. Crime exists everywhere in the world, but we neither saw nor heard any evidence that the wave of violence and crime from the mainland has spread to the islands.


Good energy truly abounds at Paya Bay, and we encourage anyone considering a visit to take the plunge!

Room Tip: Can't miss; all rooms have great views. Hilltop rooms have king beds and are larger than Cliffside.
  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Walkab0ut1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 11, 2012

We were in Roatan Honduras and stayed in a rental house, but we explored during the day and twice had lunch at Paya Bay Resort. The property is beautiful. The owner Lurlene was lovely and made you feel so welcome . Their diningroom is cheerful and classy . The setting is incredible, the food was so good. Lots of choices on their menu. As I said we only were there for lunch, but liked it so much went back a second time. We would love to return to Roatan and stay at Paya Bay. The beach looked beautiful and they have a special place to do yoga....

Room Tip: We did not stay here , only had lunch....
  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank Kebjs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 5, 2012

Can't say it any better than the last poster. We were down there the same time as they were and enjoyed relaxing. We did do the Mangrove tour and did enjoy that. The owners and staff were great and the food good. Lobster on Sunday night was a treat and the food was good for most of the week. I found the beach bar-b-que a little lacking.

We found the accommodations good and clean. A little dated maybe but adequate. We were in Unit 8A which was a little bigger than most.

Again we agree with everything else the last poster said.

Room Tip: Got 8A which was a bigger end unit
  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank allovertanguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 3, 2012

Just returned from 7 days at Paya Bay and can't wait to return. We booked the GEE package with all the adventures included, but ended up not wanting to leave the resort. The owners and staff make you feel like you're the most important guests at all times and were very accomodating to every request. If you want to get away from everything, this the place. If you want action packed days and nights with activities to entertain your kids, go to the West End and leave this piece of paradise for the rest of us to enjoy. The beach side massages were wonderful. Reading a good book while relaxing on the beach without clothes or a care in the world...should be on everyone's must do list. We didn't have but a few insect bites and rarely wore bug spray. A few of the guest did seem to get bitten and itched real bad...avoid perfumes and don't lay your towel directly on the beach (use the lounge chairs). The variety of food was sufficient for a one week stay, we sampled most items on the menu and enjoyed many of the nightly specials. Overall this was a trip that will be hard to beat and truly set the standard for us to compare all other resorts. Very small, quiet, surrounded by the natural beauty of the island, and tasteful clothing optional areas with like-minded guests. What more can I say, we are already planning to come back to Paya Bay next year.

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank JT S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 28, 2012

We traveled to Paya Bay based on the recommendations from the car rental agency and I must say we were not dissapointed, though getting there is in itself quite an experience. We drove from the west end and though most of the journey is on paved roads the last 10 kls are certainly not, the road is to say the least quite a challenge! Once you arrive the setting is very beautiful, they have great looking beaches and a restaurant with quite the view, we stopped for lunch which was very good and spent a very pleasant hour or so visiting and talking to the owner. If you want to get completely away then from the hustle then this is the place to be on Roatan. If you want more action then don't stay here, it is out of the way and just getting to and from the Paya Bay may just be too much.

Stayed: March 2012
Thank Levelguy1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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