Roatan Cruise Port Guide
So, is your upcoming cruise calling at Roatan? And before arrival, do you want to find out as much as possible about the cruise ports? Great, then you’ve come to the right place.
Roatan is a growing destination on the cruise scene. Over a million people visit Roatan via one of the island’s two ports each year. The fact there are two cruise ports on Roatan is sometimes a surprise for visitors, who expect an island of this diminutive size to be served by a single port. However, with an abundance of nature-based and adrenaline-inducing attractions, the demand to visit Roatan keeps the two ports busy year-round.
In this article, we’ll run through everything you need to know about Roatan’s two ports, including where they’re located, what facilities are close by, and how to get from the cruise ports to Roatan’s best attractions.
Roatan Cruise Port Information
Is Roatan safe for cruise passengers?
Yes, Roatan is a safe destination for cruise passengers. Cruise terminals are managed spaces with security in force that only authorized people can enter.
Once you leave the cruise port, you enter Roatan ‘proper’. The island is generally very safe, with serious crime being minimal. However, as you would anywhere in the world, you should keep your belongings in sight and be aware of your surroundings at all times.
Where do the cruise ships dock in Roatan?
Here are the two cruise ports in Roatan along with their Roatan cruise port addresses:
- Mahogany Bay Cruise Port
- Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port (Port of Roatan)
Roatan cruise ship schedule
You can keep up-to-date with the current Roatan cruise ship schedules on this website.
Mahogany Bay Cruise Port
Opened in 2010, the Mahogany Bay cruise terminal is the newer, and larger, of the two Roatan cruise ports on the island. It can accommodate two super-sized cruise vessels at a time, with enough space for around 8,000 disembarking passengers. It’s a popular port, with Mahogany Bay cruise port reviews rating the facility 4.5/5 stars.
Where is the Mahogany Bay Cruise Terminal located?
This cruise port is located on the southwestern coast of Roatan, about a 10-minute drive east of the island’s capital city, Coxen Hole.
Here are the approximate drive times to some of Roatan’s most popular districts:
- West End: 25-30 minutes
- West Bay: 30-35 minutes
- Sandy Bay: 20 minutes
- French Harbour: 10 minutes
Mahogany Bay Cruise Port Map
To help you find your way around the Mahogany Bay Cruise Port, here’s a handy map.
Which cruise lines use the Mahogany Bay Cruise Terminal?
Mahogany Bay is owned by Carnival Corporation, so will usually be the dock of choice for the following cruise lines:
- Carnival Cruise Line
- Princess Cruises
- Holland America Line
- Regent Seven Seas
However, cruise passengers should note that last-minute changes sometimes occur, and the arrival port can change. This is usually due to unfavorable weather or rough waters, so be sure to check on-ship announcements before arrival.
What facilities does Mahogany Bay Cruise Terminal have?
The Mahogany Bay Cruise Center has an impressive disembarkation zone, packed with shopping, eating, and cultural attractions.
In addition, there’s a Magical Flying Beach Chair taking visitors to Mahogany Beach, a private Roatan paradise exclusively available to cruise guests. The chair lift costs $14 for adults and $8 for children over the age of 3, which includes all-day use of the beach. Snorkel gear, loungers, and cabanas are available to rent for an extra charge.
There is duty-free shopping available in-terminal, and other stores include Dufry’s jewelers and local favorites Pirana Joe’s and Del Sol. There’s also a craft market, where you can buy the wares of over a dozen specially-selected local artisans.
Other facilities include:
- Fat Tuesday’s, a coffee shop, an ice-cream parlor, and more
- A fully-stocked pharmacy
- Garinagu Cultural Exhibit
- Car rental and a taxi stand
What is close to Mahogany Bay Cruise Terminal?
Mahogany Bay is located between Coxen Hole and French Harbour and is relatively secluded. It’s a terminal designed to entertain, but you’ll want to leave the port area to experience the true essence of Roatan.
Road taxis and water taxis
Road taxis Taxis are available and follow a pre-defined fare structure set by the Mahogany Bay Taxi Association. This divides the island of Roatan into five zones:
- Zone A - covering Coxen Hole and French Harbour: $20 per cab (up to 4 passengers)
- Zone B - covering French Cay, Black Pearl Golf Course, and Sandy Bay: $10 per person (minimum of 2 passengers)
- Zone C - covering West End and West Bay: $15 per person (minimum of 2 passengers)
- Zone D - covering Oak Ridge and Punta Gorda: $15 per person (minimum of 2 passengers)
- Zone E - covering Diamond Rock and Camp Bay: $20 per person (minimum of 2 passengers)
Water taxis are available to transfer visitors between West End and West Bay, with a one-way trip costing around $3.
There are two ATMs located in Mahogany Bay, both of which are close to the Tourist Information Booth. From one ATM, you can withdraw Honduran lempiras, and from the other, US dollars.
Other than Mahogany Bay’s in-terminal stores, you’ll have to travel if you want to shop. Generally, the best area for visitor shopping is West End, which is packed full of tourist-friendly stores and vendors. Not only will you have more choice here, but you’ll get to meet friendly Roatan locals, who will probably offer you better prices than the stores in the port.
Restaurants and bars
Pick any of the tourist destinations on the island and you’ll be guaranteed to find somewhere appealing to eat and drink. Coxen Hole has restaurants, but these are less targeted towards visitors than the popular areas of West End and West Bay, which have plenty of high-quality restaurants to choose from.
If you want to see the Roatan outside the confines of the terminal, you’re best off taking a cab to one of the island’s prime beaches. If you’re looking for a little seclusion and facilities aren’t too important, Sandy Bay, Camp Bay Beach, or Pigeon Cay Beach would be great options. However, if you want access to restaurants, bars, and shopping, try the beaches at West Bay or West End, which are busier, but better provisioned.
If you want to see what makes Roatan such a popular destination with cruisers, we’d recommend you book an excursion with one of our trusted local tour guides. You can fit a surprising number of activities into a single day, including snorkeling or diving, ATV off-roading, zip-lining, or cuddling up to some of Roatan’s cutest wildlife.
Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port
The older of the Roatan cruise ports is Coxen Hole (aka Port of Roatan), with fewer facilities than Mahogany Bay, but space for up to three cruise ships - one at the pier, and two at anchor.
Where is the Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port located?
The Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port is located in the Town Center of Coxen Hole, the capital of Roatan, which is in the southwestern corner of Roatan.
Here are the approximate drive times from the port to some of Roatan’s most popular districts:
- West End: 15 minutes
- West Bay: 15-20 minutes
- Sandy Bay: 10-15 minutes
- French Harbour: 20-25 minutes
Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port Map
Which cruise lines use the Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port?
Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port is managed by Royal Caribbean. Around 170 cruise ships call here each year, with the following cruise lines usually docking in this port:
- Royal Caribbean - these ships usually dock at the pier
- Norwegian Cruise Line - these ships often anchor and passengers will be tendered to shore.
- Celebrity Cruises
Remember that your docking port can change at short notice, so stay up-to-date with announcements on your ship.
What facilities does the Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port have?
There are plenty of amenities to keep you entertained at the Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port dock. In fact, while we’d always recommend you explore further afield, some people say you can have an enjoyable shore day even if you don’t leave the port! The
- Souvenir and gift shopping
- Live entertainment, including Garifuna dancing
- Hand-rolled cigars
- A post office
- Restaurants and bars
- A zipline - perfect for thrillseekers!
What is close to the Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port?
Road and water taxis
Road taxis You will find plenty of taxis at Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port, in the nearby parking area. Fares for the official Taxi Association vehicles are pre-set, with prices to the island’s most popular destinations as follows:
- Coxen Hole Cruise Port to West Bay / West End / French Harbour - $20 for one person, or $25 for two
- Coxen Hole Cruise Port to Sandy Bay - $15 for one person, or $20 for two
Note that prices are usually for a round-trip, but make sure you confirm this with the driver.
Water taxis Water taxis operate between West End and West Bay, providing a convenient and fun way to switch between these two popular areas. A one-way trip costs around $3.
There is one ATM at the Coxen Hole cruise terminal, and there are several in Coxen Hole, the island’s main city, where the port is located. if you want to spend US dollars, that’s fine, as they are accepted on the island, but lempiras are the official Honduran currency.
For simple gifts and souvenirs, you can find all you need in the Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port stores, with liquors, cigars, chocolate, and jewelry all being popular choices.
If you want a supermarket, Coxen Hole is home to several decent-sized stores, including a branch of Eldon’s on Main St, and there are plenty of pharmacies dotted around. There are also local clothing and home decor stores to be found in Coxen Hole if you want to indulge in some more substantial shopping.
Restaurants and bars
There are several restaurants and bars in the Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port, including La Catrachita, Monkey La La (where you can also find the zip-line), and Captain Jack’s Island Seafood Bar.
Away from the port, Coxen Hole has a number of eateries to try, including the well-rated Bertie’s Criolle Cuisine on the waterfront. Most of the island’s best dining and drinking options can be found in the West End and West Bay districts of the island, which are an easy taxi ride away.
Coxen Hole isn’t home to any beaches, so if you want a lazy day soaking up the sun on Roatan’s white-sand beaches, your best bet is to take a taxi to either West End or West Bay, both of which are home to stunning curved bays. Or you could visit the quieter Sandy Bay, Camp Bay Beach, or Pigeon Cay Beach, although facilities are limited along these secluded stretches of coastline on the northern and eastern sides of the island.
You can find out all you need to know about Roatan’s beaches in this useful article.
The island of Roatan has a multitude of attractions that will appeal to cruisers which are included in this hand-picked selection of excursions. You’ll be picked up and dropped off at the Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port, as well as being guaranteed a safe return to the ship in plenty of time for departure.
In a nutshell
Whether your cruise ship arrives at Mahogany Bay or Coxen Hole Roatan Cruise Port, you’ll find everything you need for an exciting - and stress-free - shore day. Both ports offer ample facilities, a well-managed transport infrastructure, loads of excursion options, plus easy access to the most popular destinations at West End and West Bay.
The Best Roatan Cruise Excursions
Book your adventures on these top-rated small-group excursions
Guide to Roatan Honduras
Resources for your Roatan cruise stop