Paya Bay Resort
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Historical Traveler Reviews Paya Bay Resort Roatan
Excellent dive operation on unspoiled, quiet reefs
Paya Bay resort is on the VERY quiet East end of the Island. If you're coming to dive then this is without doubt the place to stay. If you want gourmet food and nightlife stay somewhere else (West end)
Justin runs the dive operation and it is outstanding. Ven is one of the divemasters who is also excellent; very knowledgeable about the area. Richard does a fabulous job of manning the boat and taking care of your equipment and cameras etc.
This is the only dive operation that runs out of the East end. We never saw another dive boat the whole time we were there. We saw a whale shark - 24' long (as big as the boat!).
The reefs are young and topographically they are really interesting given that they are of volcanic origin. Tons of parrotfish and squirrelfish; take your camera as there's a huge blue parrotfish that lives at one of the sites (ask Ven; he'll know).
The coral is worth lingering over for some great pictures. There was virtually no current so it's easy stress-free diving; a great place to go if you want to learn too! (also great for novice underwater photography)
The room we stayed in (#5) was lovely. Very provate small balcony that gets the sun in the morning and overlooks the sea. Great through breeze so you really don't need the (very noisy) air conditioning or (very noisy) ceiling fan. The bathroom is OK; just a shower, no bath. Bed's really quite comfy.
Food: Breakfast is the best meal of the day. Justin tends to get lunch orders placed ahead of time so you don't have to wait (for ages!) for your food once you've ordered it. Dinner is OK if you like lobster & other seafood. Wine is OK. Not much of a selection & they didn't have red when we first arrived but at $25US a bottle it's OK (mostly Chilean & Californian).
Service is SLOW and unless you really specify they don't seem to get the concept of a starter 'followed by' a main course; they tend to bring it all at once.
Having said this, there is a fridge in your room if you are so inclined to bring some snacks with you.
There are NO loungers at Paya Bay; not ONE comfortable chair so if you're looking to lounge around in the sun your option is one of the 2 beaches where you'll probably get bitten all over by sand-flies.
Having said all this we would definitely recommend the resort for divers.
Personal service in paradise
Paya Bay is a beautiful, secluded resort on the East side of Roatan. Although Paya Bay does not have a 48' dive boat or a collection of dolphins all penned up.....they do offer PERSONAL SERVICE!!!! At Paya Bay there are only about 8 rooms, so you will not be lost in the crowd. The food at Paya Bay is great...but chef Charlie is always willing to accomodate to your needs or tastes and Tom will make drinks guaranteed to make you relax. If you want to get away from it all (including tv)...and enjoy world class diving...then Paya Bay is the best.
A wonderful young lady named Gretchen handles the reservations at Paya Bay and is extremely prompt and friendly at answering all your questions.
We also must mention Gina. She has the biggest, friendliest smile and is an A+ tour guide if you want to spend a day seeing the island.
Although I have dove in Hawaii, Bahamas and the Florida Keys...there is no comparison!!! I decided to get "re-certified" on this trip while my friend Sheri was getting certified . Sheri had never dove before and had a bit of anxiety about the whole process. When I made arrangements to do this, Justin (the dive instructor) said he would be working individually with us all week. I didn't believe him...but still went ahead with my plans. Well, Justin literally spent the week with just us....it was amazing!!!! Diving lessons in the morning....course work in the afternoon. Justin was an extremely good teacher...very patient...but with just enough prodding. On Sheri's first day of diving she had a huge eagle ray pass right next to us. Over the week we experienced beautiful corals, tropical fish and so much more! Although this was my first attempt at underwater photography...I am sending along a photo.
Steve & Sheri
Fantastic retreat and service
Felt like being with close friends and family all week.warm and inviting. best location on Roatan. remote and peaceful. 2 private beaches. excellent diving w/their own dive masters. rooms with ocean balconies, classy and comfortable.delicious meals. only 15 other guests. Will be back!
Like staying with family & Diving secluded pristine reefs!
If you're looking for an intimate, off the beaten path resort where you are treated like family and dive undisturbed by other dive boats, book your trip now for Paya Bay which sits on the East end of Roatan. We just returned from a one week all-inclusive stay in a cottage-like room at Paya Bay and thoroughly enjoyed the varied and wonderful meals cooked to order - no buffet lines here! The dive crew is friendly and knowledgeable of the area and follow the 'look don't touch' mantra. Unfortunately, we hear that dive resorts on the West end of Roatan regularly feed and harass for the entertainment of visiting divers. Our gear was rinsed and hung nightly for us - all we had to do was show up and enjoy all that the reefs have to offer. Be ready for sensory overload on some dives where there's so much to see you don't know where to look. Lovely people, great diving, good food and beautiful views.
Paya Bay is Awesome
My wife and I just returned from an NCL cruise which stopped at the island of Roatan. We heard reviews of Paya Bay but never imagined it would be this good. We had spent the days at our other ports near town, site seeing and decided to do an excursion on Roatan since we had never been to that island before. It is a long drive to get out to the resort but made for a good tour of the island. The location of the resort is sweet: sitting atop a bluff with two basically private beaches. We were the only people there from the cruise but they had 4 guests at the resort spending a week, whom we had lunch with.
Food and service were excellent. The waitress and chefs talked to us for awhile and made us feel very welcome. We felt Roatan had the friendlist people of all the spots we stopped at. However the poverty in certain areas around town is quite apparent.
I guess the best part at Paya Bay was the snorkeling. Justin and his crew at the dive shop took us to a nearby site and we got in about 2 hours of snorkeling. They were overly accomodating leading us around, helping with snorkeling techniques and pointing stuff out. The people we had lunch with were able to dive at the same place and spent some time snorkeling with us after their dive.
We are planning on returing next year to spend a week now that we know about Paya Bay. So I highly recommend this wonderful secret oasis in Roatan.
Our trip to Paya Bay....
We were on the Island of Roatan, a few months ago. I must say our stay at Paya Bay Beach Resort was one of the best we've ever had. Its a familly owned and operated resort. The food was autentic Island , or quite an elaborate selection of latin and American cuizine.
The owners, Mervin & Lurlene, well theres no one word for their excelent services. They went beyound and above our expectations, to make sure our stay with them was a vacation we would never ever forget, and guess what? We won't. Thank you and your wonderful staff for showing my family and me,what a true vacation in Paridise is all about.
Diving on the east end of the island is incredible!! Much to see, the coral is vibrant with coler, fish, in abondance, and we even saw a turtle!!
We most definately recomend, this small but well staffed and operated resort.
And we plan to return next summer.
Dona & Family,
My trip to Paya Bay was fantastic! I went there last year, and have already made reservations to go next year. The service and sincere kindness of the owners and employees was wonderfully refreshing. The laid back atmosphere, fresh air, beautiful scenery, scuba diving/snorkeling, boat tour to neighboring cays, culture, bright sunshine, and so much more was everything I (or anyone) could want in a vacation. Truly an amazing place; you must go there!
Paya Bay Resort, The Ultimate Escape
Paya Bay Resort would have to ranked as our best weeks vacation yet in the Caribbean for the following reasons:
1. The resort is small and intimate. They have 10 rooms on the East end of the island away from most development.
2. The views from everywhere on the resort are spectacular.
3. The resort has two beaches and one is a secluded private beach.
4. The owners are two of the nicest people on this earth..
5. The construction of this resort was truly a labor of love. The restaurant is truly unique with large patio areas and a deck area over looking the ocean.
6. The rooms are so unique you must see them on the web site.
7. The food was excellent. Lobster, shrimp, steaks and smoked pork chops from menu.
8. The diving on the East end is on reefs that are undisturbed and pristine. These reefs still have a lot of fish life unlike some other areas of West Roatan where some my dives in pevious years were almost fishless. Due to some storms, I was not able to dive all the new locations Justin has discovered. If the quality of the dives is more important than the quantity then you will like the East end diving as much as I did.
This is resort for people who want to de-stress and love the beauty of nature or want private romantic times. If you want continuous activity and marble bathrooms, this is not for you. This is an old style intimate Caribbean getaway.
This is a tropical setting so bring your bug spray and I recommend an itch zapper in case of a bug bites. Search google for "itch zapper".
I learned a lot about the history of Roatan from the owners. English is the first language of Roatan unlike the rest of Honduras and most of the schools on the East end are bilingual.
I flew Continental Airlines direct to the island of Roatan from Houston. They fly only on Saturday but his is a lot easier than connecting from the mainland of Honduras.
TripAdvisor Reviews Paya Bay Resort Roatan
Travel Blogs from Roatan
We arrived in Roatan two weeks ago. The first week it rained for a few days, then the sun came out. After a couple days of unpacking and housekeeping we borrowed a car and drove to French Harbour for groceries shopping at "Eldon's" and the fish market. On our way home, after spending around $300 we did the math on home cooking vs …
... or change in dollars, potentially a problem. We were finger printed, all digits and thumbs, photographed, and stamps were administered. The whole thing took an hour and we got a combination of change in lempiras and dollars. At least there were no forms to fill in, and no customs searches. It turned out that we were charged 4 dollars (or equivalent) rather than what we were supposed to be charged to enter Honduras because the office "had ...
... 27C water. There was a lot of life around the wreck, for me the highlight was a hand full of big groupers and snappers, these massive fish swam up to greet us while we were descending towards the wreck. We only did a few dives because the snorkelling from the shore at West End Beach was fantastic, it was about a 5km walk on the sand from Moonlight Bay. Brilliant coral reef starts close to the beach and makes a steep drop that was great for freediving, we were ...
... like a wreck dive where we swam through the cabin and buoyancy checks where we had a race on the ocean floor and swam through hoops. Although Utila is the area to see whale sharks unfortunately the elusive whale shark remains elusive, no other sharks or whales were spotted :( Had a great time with my dive team too (Chaf the Londoner and my dive buddy who never follows instructions, Lee from Beds ...
... t have to mess with it this morning.
The tour meets at the end of the pier so we meet up with our group and are delighted to discover that a mother/son duo (Ann and Brian) we've interacted with several times are amongst them. Either I knew and forgot or never knew that today's tour includes free drinks (alcohol only after snorkeling) and lunch on board the catamaran. Soon we're off.
The water is choppy and rough...definitely not ...