Sandy Bay Beach in Roatan Honduras (Horseback riding & Kayaking)

Sandy Bay Beach in Roatan, Honduras
Sandy Bay Beach in Roatan, Honduras

Sandy Bay Beach

If you are on the island of Roatan and looking for a beach to get away from the crowds then you might consider Sandy Bay Beach.

This beach is on the north shore of Roatan in the middle of a locals neighborhood. The Sandy Bay area is pretty quiet though.

I was there on a Sunday afternoon and rather than calling the community sleepy, I would call it asleep! The only other sound I heard other than the waves gently rolling onto the shore was a gospel choir singing in a nearby church.

Full disclosure though, this locals beach grays the line between beach and shoreline. I’ve seen photos of this beach with nice white sand lining the shore, but when I was there it looked more like stretches of dirt. The dirt was packed down enough that cars could even drive on the beach.

The water was pretty enough, but not the clear blue turquoise that makes the Caribbean famous. And once again, it was definitely not the soft white sand I’d seen before.

If you are looking for a place to enjoy the water via kayak or experience the Caribbean while on horseback without throngs of people then this could be your spot! If you are looking for somewhere to lay out in soft sand then you might want to keep looking for somewhere else. There are other beaches that aren’t too far of a drive you might consider instead.

Sandy Bay Beach Quick Facts

  • Names: Sandy Bay, Sandy Bay Beach
  • Known For: being in a locals neighborhood away from the crowds
  • Facilities: none, though there is one convenience store just off the shore
  • Lifeguards: none
  • Parking: plenty in the grass lots behind the shore or along the streets
  • Cost: free
  • Other: shore is more dirt than sand
  • Excursions: Horseback riding

Sandy Bay Location

Sandy Bay Roatan is located on the north side of the Honduran island. It is more towards the west side. The west side of the island is the most developed with tourism infrastructure, and the best beaches.

It is about a 25 minute drive from the West End or West Bay area to the Sandy Bay area.

Officially Sandy Bay is a small neighborhood area. Most everyone that lives there are Honduran locals, but there are a few expats that live there as well.

There are really not a lot of restaurants and bars in the area other than a couple close to the beach.

What to Expect at Sandy Bay Beach

The sand of the beach is actually dirt. I don’t recommend going to this “beach” to play in the water. You definitely will escape the crowds here, but don’t plan on sunning on the shores.

The only other people were a couple guys launching kayaks to row out to the reefs and one family having a barbeque. Also you can ride horses along the beach here (book here). More on that below.

It did look like a great location for a barbeque though since they could drive their car along the shore and directly up to their grilling site.

Sandy Bay in Roatan Honduras
Sandy Bay Kayaking in Roatan Honduras

Go Horseback Riding at Sandy Bay

Sandy Bay is famous for their horseback riding on the beach. Traveling the area by horseback is the perfect way to be able to explore the shore and nearby trails. It is an AWESOME way to see the island.

Looking to get away from the shore and out into the water? This is a perfect place to launch your kayak, and calm waters make it a relatively easy process. You can get out to areas where the water is gorgeous!

Book your tour: Half-Day Horseback Riding, Zip Line Monkey & Sloths and Snorkel Tour!

Horseback riding along Sandy Bay Beach on Roatan Island
Horseback riding along Sandy Bay Beach on Roatan Island

Sandy Bay Snorkeling: Find A Better Spot

If you are hoping to snorkel this probably isn’t the best location for it either. The water wasn’t the clear blue, and there weren’t boat operators offering to take you out to the best spots on the reef.

I’ve seen people say this is a good snorkeling spot, but I feel like there are other easier places on the island where you can get to a stretch of the Mesoamerican Coral Reef.

Supposedly the reef is only 100 yards off shore, but I couldn’t see it and there were no swimmers or tour boats out there.

There are tours that do take people out to the reef from here. Check out this page for more details.

I 100% recommend getting out to the coral reef though as it is the best attraction in Roatan!


You will have no problem parking your car anywhere. There are empty grass lots as well as spaces along the sides of the street leading up to the shore. If you take a taxi here I would be really worried about being able to find one to get back.

Conclusion: Is Sandy Bay Beach worth visiting?

While the Sandy Bay community is nice and peaceful, I wouldn’t recommend going there if you are looking to relax on a beach. There are better beaches nearby.

Where To Go Instead

The best beach on the island is the West Bay Beach. While it can attract quite a crowd, the beach is big enough for you to find your own space to spread out on.

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Hey there! I'm Claire, the founder of & While spending 4 years completely bedridden and miserable from an unexpected illness I decided to begin writing about my past travel adventures and now the rest is history. Thank you so much for visiting the website. I hope you enjoy it!


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