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Roatan is the most developed of all the Bay Islands and therefore, public transportation functions better on Roatan than for its neighbors.
There are taxis readily available upon your arrival at a ferry dock or the airport. The important thing to remember is that you should always establish the fare rate before stepping in the taxi! Riders can be taken advantage of if they do not clearly state and negotiate with the driver the price ahead of time. Make sure that you establish what currency your fare will be paid in as well; both Lempiras and American dollars are expected. Generally, you will get a better rate when paying in Lempiras.
There is a useful mini-bus system as well, operating out of mini-vans. In this case, you must pay your fare in Lempiras. Many operate out of Coxen Hole, which is known to be a more dangerous spot in Roatan, avoid this area at night. The way to get a mini-bus in most instances means you should flag it down! Mini busses stop operating around 6pm and taxi fares go up at this time. On cruise ship days, it will be near impossible to locate a mini-bus, as most of them are busy at the two cruise ship docks doing island tours or transporting guests to the various popular spots and destinations.
For around 60 Lempiras, and before sunset, you can get a water taxi to transport you from West End to West Bay. For currency conversions, visit www.xe.com .
The best option for most transportation, that you may need while on Roatan, is through your hotel or property manager. Most major resorts can provide some form of transportation, or they can suggest a local business operator or rental agency that they trust. Before anything, always consult your hotel.
If you feel confident in handling your own transportation, then car rentals are readily available. In addition, for those more adventurous, scooters and motorcycles can also be rented.
The main road on Roatan is paved from West Bay to Oakridge. As of Jan 2014, the road from Coxen Hole to Flowers Bay is being concreted. This is due to the amount of traffic it experiences from the Port of Roatan and the airport, to the popular resorts and accomodations in West Bay. Unfortunately, the pothole situation from Flowers Bay to West Bay is really bad and caution should be taken after heavy rainfall for those driving their own vehicles; as the holes get deeper and more dangerous to those not knowlegable about the roads. The national government has promised funds to extend the new concrete road from Flowers Bay all the way to West Bay, but that result remains to be seen. Check with your hotel about current road conditions, and the best road to take you to where you want to go.
The paved road from West End to Sandy Bay and then to Coxen Hole and beyond to the rest of the island, is in great shape, and handles the majority of everyday traffic.
Seeing the island is a must.