Roatan Snorkeling Tours is run by a super-nice local couple, Janna and Brian. They offer budget-friendly trips several places along Roatan's east side, including out to Pigeon Cay, departing from Jonesville. A couple weeks ago, I had noticed a posting of theirs on Facebook, and a group from the hostel went to spend the day with them. They all had a terrific time, so I'd been waiting to have a free day to go on their trip too. The wind had been blowing strong all week, but was looking like it would calm down on Friday.
Friday morning, dark clouds loomed on the horizon, but we hoped that the weather would work out for our trip. Janna greeted us as we drove into Jonesville, and we loaded up on the boat. A few raindrops fell as we headed out, but they quickly stopped. The wind hadn't died down as much as hoped, and picked up throughout the day, but it wasn't too bumpy a ride.
We did a snorkel stop at Cow and Calf, a couple of outcroppings on the south-east side with beautiful coral around the base. Then we continued east, cut through the mangrove channel to the north shore, looping further east and eventually cutting through between St. Helene and Morat, then further east on the south side of Barbarete, until we got to Pigeon Cay.
It was blowing pretty hard by the time we got there, but we weren't alone. A helicopter tour was there with a few guests. We stayed for a short swim and then started making our way back. Once we got into the Jonesville area, we toured through a section of mangroves, and then stopped at a protected swimming hole, and the boys played on a rope swing. The day flew by!
Janna and Brian gave us a lift to our overnight destination, The Sail Inn. A unique little 3 room bed and breakfast place run by Kim and Tony, The Sail Inn really felt like a getaway from everything. A balcony runs the length of the house, overlooking the protected waters inside of Jonesville Bight (I'm still a little confused on the whole layout of Jonesville, as there's apparently 2 Jonesvilles, but I found a Google map, below, that has the Sail Inn marked on it (our boat trip departed from Hog Pen Bight).
We had a great dinner at Hole in the Wall, then headed back to the Sail Inn for the night. A comfy night of sleep (a few roosters in the distance, but not close enough to disturb my rest). It was very peaceful. In the morning, I got up early and curled up in a hammock with a book. Kim cooked us a delicious breakfast, and then we headed out to explore in kayaks.
Kim told us how to get to the mangrove channel, though we got very turned around and would have never found it if we hadn't seen Janna and Brian passing by in a boat, who pointed us in the right direction. We kayaked through the channel to the same little swimming hole we had been to the day before, and the boys had fun jumping from the mangroves into the water. As we started to head back, dark clouds loomed ominously. Rain drops started falling when we were nearly through the mangroves, and by the time we were heading through the bight, torrential rain was teeming down- I could hardly see Deo behind me! It was really fun :) We made it back just before there was a clap of thunder, and Kim was waiting with dry towels (what a great host!).
We dried off and enjoyed the rain coming down. Once it let up mid-day, Brian came to pick us up, as he and Janna had invited us to lunch with Janna's family.
Such amazing hospitality from everyone, we felt so welcome in Jonesville, with new friendships formed. Our stay-cation was the perfect little escape :)