Marine Habitat and Study Areas
Intertidal Environments, Reefs, & Seagrass Communities
Miles of diverse fringing reefs surround Roatan. The forereef slope is characterized by deep spur and groove formations. Thirty or more scuba diving sites are available within minutes of RIMS. Most dive sites can be snorkeled. Mangroves: Man-O-War-Key; Red mangrove community surrounding a protected bay adjacent to coral reef. Only a 20 minute boat ride to the mangroves.
Flowers Bay Intertidal
Large shallow bay of coral rubble and seagrass beds. Requires 15-minute bus transportation and 10-minute hike along South shore.
West Bay Beach Intertidal
Located on western most tip of island. Rocky shoreline, iron shore, coral rubble, tidal pools and sandy beaches. Convergence of water masses from North and South side of island.
Abundant turtle grass, Thalassisa testudinum, beds as well as other seagrass species with easy access for both divers and snorkelers.
West Bay Beach
Excellent snorkeling, access directly from beautiful Tabyana beach.
Back Reef Areas
Much calm, relatively shallow, back reef areas with access to seagrass beds and patch corals. Man-O-War key, adjacent to mangroves, variety of hard coral octocorals.
Bailey's Key and Anthony's Key
Excellent shallow water snorkeling. Great for night snorkels.
Night diving and snorkeling
Safe night diving and snorkeling available.
Shallow coral and rubble area. Environment heavily influenced by local development and population. Good contrast to more pristine areas. Requires bus transportation (15 minutes).
Most of the community is built directly on water. Boat transportation by small-motorized dories. Heavy population impact on environment. Tour through mangroves and bights of Oak Ridge. Fee for mangrove boat trip and requires bus transportation. (60 minutes).
Diving south shore of Roatan
South side diving features very steep walls, abundance of octocorals and varieties of sponges
There are several locations along the island to study geological formations. May require bus transportation.