Little French Key, Honduras 2015


     In June of 2015, Becky (my wife) and I went on a Cruise to the West Caribbean. One of our stops was the Little French Key.  Located on the Bay Islands of Roatan, Little French Key is a private and secure island providing a fun beach and natural experience with hands-on experiences with semi-wild animals.

Regional map of Roatan, Honduras

     Sitting at the southern terminus of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, Roatan Island and The Little French Key is surrounded by coral reefs, protecting it from the open ocean and is home to a complex underwater ecosystem.   

From a tree-house looking across the bay at Roatan Island from the “Little French Key”.

     Millions of years ago, giant tectonic plates scraped against one another in titanic clash resulting in the underwater mountain range today we call the ‘Bonacca Ridge’ in which the Bay Islands, (Roatan Island) are now found. The upwelling of magma and the crumbling of basalt rock (the core of the islands) built, over millennia, a mountain range whose peaks manage to barely extend above sea level forming the Bay Islands. Over time these islands have become covered in thick tropical vegetation, a variety of animals and eventually a civilization that have come to know them as the Islas de la Bahía or in English, the Bay Islands.

The “Little French Keys” near Roatan Island in Honduras 2015

     Geologists estimate that the islands emerged from the sea primarily in the Eocene and Oligocene time periods, or roughly between 56-34 and 34-23 million years ago. The mountains were formed and lifted out of the sea by an upwelling of magma via the separation and parallel movement of the Motagua and Swan Islands fault. The Bonacca ridge is a Horst which is a type of geological formation of up thrown blocks bounded on either side by normal faulting, which continue to grow today albeit very slowly.  ‘Tectonic’ and ‘volcanic’ forces are not the only ones that have had a hand sculpting Roatan and the surrounding Bay Islands; sea level has also changed over geologic time.

One of the Honduran local getting set for a dip in the bay on the “Little French Key”

     This unique set of random geological forces has transpired to create a truly wondrous place to experience and we are left with the scattered jewels known to the locals as the “Little French Keys and Roatan Island”.

Becky interacting with some of the local Semi-wildlife on the “Little French Key”

     The video below is an opportunity Becky had with swimming with a Leopard.  The Leopard was probably brought in from the mainland of Honduras and trained.  A beautiful animal.

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