This week was the week I had been looking forward to the most and I was not disappointed. We arrived on the beautiful island of Utila on Saturday morning and we immediately fell in love, our hostel was right on the sea front with hammocks and volleyball nets. It was the perfect place to spend five days. On the first night, and every night thereafter, we were graced with the most beautiful sunsets over the bay.
On Sunday, a few of us went to the Water Cay islands near Utila. We took a speedboat over and were immediately wowed by the beauty of the white sand beaches and clear blue water. We spent the day snorkeling, swimming and relaxing in hammocks. It was a true paradise. In the evening, we treated ourselves to a delicious meal at Mango Tango, a restaurant overlooking the bay and finished the night sipping wine and watching the ocean.
Emily and I also rented a quad bike to explore the island in the remaining spare time we had before starting our diving classes on Monday. As we drove from one end of the island to the other we got to view everything Utila has to offer, from white beaches and beautiful oceans to market stalls and lively bars (and amazing pupusa stands!) We managed to make it home safely just in time for our diving lessons, despite Emily crashing us in to a tree within 10 seconds of starting to drive – I drove from then on.
For the next four days, we completed our PADI Openwater Diving Course and found that Utila is one of the best places to dive in the world, the water was so clear and the wildlife was incredible. During our dives, we swam with an eagle stingray, moray eels, a baby trunk fish, an octopus and many more. Izzy and Celina, who were already advanced divers also got to do a night swim where they were surrounded by biofluorescent plankton to light their way through the sea. This amazing experience has inspired me to continue diving back in the UK and be more involved in the conservation of marine life.
We move on to Nicaragua this week and in our first few days there we will be completing the two day hike of El Hoyo volcano – wish us luck!
By Honour James - Central America Trail Volunteer
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