Anthony's Key Resort
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Honduras has long been just off the mainstream tourist radar, but for divers it's firmly within sight, due largely to low-cost, easy access to the world's second-largest barrier reef. And when it comes to diving in Honduras, there's Anthony's Key, and then there's the rest of the resorts. As expected from a world-class dive resort, Anthony Key's position on the northwestern coast of Roatánthe largest of the country's three Bay Islandsaffords guests easy access to 35 dive(+) More
Honduras has long been just off the mainstream tourist radar, but for divers it's firmly within sight, due largely to low-cost, easy access to the world's second-largest barrier reef. And when it comes to diving in Honduras, there's Anthony's Key, and then there's the rest of the resorts. As expected from a world-class dive resort, Anthony Key's position on the northwestern coast of Roatánthe largest of the country's three Bay Islandsaffords guests easy access to 35 dive sites, including several shore dives off the resort beach and nearby Sandy Bay. But this resort is about so much more than mere access.
First, the good stuff. The diving itselfthe reason you thought of Honduras in the first placelives up to its reputation, with water temperatures in the 80s for most of the year, gentle currents, and a vibrant marine ecosystem supporting staggering coral formations like Mary's Place, where coral has taken over a deep canyon that's now just wide enough to fin your way through.
And the dive masters at Anthony's Key are the ones you want to take you to these pristine sites. The resort's been operating for over 40 yearsand the experience shows. The ten top-notch dive boats head out three times daily, departing and returning with Swiss efficiency, and the dive masters know the sites better than any on the island. Yet you never feel overburdened by schedules, rushed, or over-governed by the dive masters; the resort maintains an island-time vibe that's so essential to the experience.
Forty-six wooden cabanas ring the shoreline of the eponymous key (or island), which is accessible by a quick jaunt in the lodge motorboat. Each bungalow on the key boasts screened-in porches, ceiling fans, and hot showers, while the 27 superior rooms also have hardwood floors, floor-to-ceiling glass windows, and air-conditioning. An additional ten cabanas sit on the main island on a hillside, nestled between tropical forest and the breezy Caribbean, with screened windows, hot showers, and ceiling fans. The four superior hillside bungalows also come with air-conditioning and floor-to-ceiling glass windows.
On-site facilities include a covered and open-air dining room, the Frangipani Bar (try the Monkey La-La rum drinks), a swimming pool with poolside dining, and WiFi access throughout the property (for a fee). Anthony's Key also has a full-service dive shop, an on-site recompression chamber, and offers the full array of dive training and PADI certification courses. They also boast children-specific outings, as well as on- and off-site activities for divers and non-divers alike. As with most dive resorts, the multi-day all-inclusive packages include daily dives, as well as all meals; extra dives (shore, night, etc.) and other activities can be arranged for an additional fee.
Anthony's Key is also famous for one other very big reason: dolphins, or more specifically its relationship with the Roatán Institute for Marine Science. There are a wide variety of ways to interact with the institute's on-site dolphin population, from snorkeling with 12 of the mammals or in an open-ocean dive with two or three of the playful animals to becoming a trainer for a day or enrolling in the two-day Dolphin Specialty Course. These programs are open to anyone visiting the islandbut guests at Anthony's Key get priority access.(-) Close
Expert Review of Anthony's Key Resort
Beach Review of Anthony's Key Resort
- The Roatan Institute of Marine Sciences is located on site; it offers a wide range of dolphin encounters as well as educational programs for adults and children. Guests of Anthony's Key Resort enjoy preferential scheduling.
- Guests can either stay on the resort's namesake key or on the mainland. Those staying on the key must take a quick boat ride to get to and from the main complex.
Family Review of Anthony's Key Resort
- Activities cater to children ages 5 to 14.
Minutes from Anthony's Key Resort, the blue-green waters of the Caribbean shelter an extensive reef with an array of marine life. Much like a tranquil island village, Anthony's Key is a true hideaway among the Bay Islands, a resort sitting on the northern coast of Roatan, a banana-shaped island off the coast of Honduras favored by divers and snorkelers. The resort occupies about eight acres of land, split between the mainland's facilities and a
Minutes from Anthony's Key Resort, the blue-green waters of the Caribbean shelter an extensive reef with an array of marine life. Much like a tranquil island village, Anthony's Key is a true hideaway among the Bay Islands, a resort sitting on the northern coast of Roatan, a banana-shaped island off the coast of Honduras favored by divers and snorkelers. The resort occupies about eight acres of land, split between the mainland's facilities and a series of 56 rustic water-side bungalows on a small island accessible by a quick ride on a motor boat. The property is peppered with coconut palms, and a pool. Roatan's airport is just 20 minutes away, and transfers are included.
Why Families Love It:
Dolphins right out your front doorwho wouldn't love that? The Roatan Institute for Marine Sciences, located at the resort, provides guests with added educational experiences and animal encounters during their island vacation. Each summer, there's Dolphin and Scuba Camp for ages five to nine and ten to 14 ($999 per child, with lodging, meals, equipment, and activities for a week). Campers go on island field trips, learn about dolphins and other sea creatures, and experience a family dolphin encounter. Year round the resort also has PADI dive courses and activities, including SASY (ages five to eight) and Bubblemaker (ages eight to eleven) to help young children get comfortable with equipment and breathing underwater. The Junior Scuba Diver course is for ages ten to 14. If lying around in a hammock under the swaying palms is your thing, you can do that, too, along with premiere snorkeling, kayaking, canoeing, and horseback riding (ages five and up).
Special Events & Activities:
A family dolphin encounter is definitely a splurge, but one that you won't easily forget. There are dolphin dives ($84 per person), dolphin snorkels ($73), and even a chance to be a dolphin trainer for a day ($160). Dolphin presentations are offered free each afternoon at the lagoon. Resort get-togethers include the weekly Tropical Beach Picnic on Monday afternoons on a private beach and Island Fiesta Night with live music, a limbo contest, and crab races (always a hit with kids), Wednesdays at 5 p.m.
Romance Review of Anthony's Key Resort
- There's no single dedicated spot for weddings at the resort. You choose where you want your ceremony to be—on the beach, a sunset overlook, even the deck of your own cabin.
- AKR is all-inclusive, which works on Roatan because there aren't many restaurants, and this resort is fairly secluded. But take an afternoon to go explore West End and other areas of the island.
- Cruise-ship passengers also book Institute dolphin programs, so before booking yours, ask in advance about the least crowded days and times.