Diving the Reefs in Utila

(Now Closed)


Calle Principal, Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System,


Where It Is: Off the coast of Honduras and at the southern end of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System—a series of reefs stretching some 450 miles across the Caribbean Sea—Utila is a 12-square-mile island surrounded by world-class dive spots.

What to Look for: The main attraction here—in spring and fall—is the whale shark, the largest fish species on earth. Though these creatures can be 30 feet long and weigh up to 20 tons, they’re safe for divers to swim among (they feed only on plankton and other tiny sea creatures). It’s pretty spectacular to get close to a whale shark, or even to see one in the distance, floating through the warm sea like an underwater zeppelin.