Thursday, May 29, 2008

Guanaja - How do you Build a House?

Our good friend, Brewski Bob, and his wife, Aunt Patti, are having a home built on Guanaja Honduras. As you may or may not know, there are no roads on the Bay Island paradise. Everything is brought in by boat. This includes construction materials!

So, to answer the question, how do you build a house? One piece of lumber at a time! Every nail, 2x4 and fixture has to be shipped from the mainland of Honduras and then off loaded at the dock on Bonacca to be then transported to its final destination on the "big" island of Guanaja.

You would think that this would be terribly expensive, but this is the way of life over there. Their home, a 2 bedroom, 2 bath with wrap around porch, 50 feet from the Caribbean Sea is under $200,000! Talk about affordable retirement living!

And ... what a view from the from porch!!!!!

For anyone thinking about affordable retirement and or living options outside of the US, Guanaja may just be the place you are looking for. You can follow along with Brewski Bob and Aunt Patti's adventure by stopping by their blog at:

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Guanaja Honduras - Holy Crab!

Holy Crab! These cute guys are everywhere in Guanaja. This type of land crab grows to be about 6 inches across and they basically eat vegetation and small insects. They dig their holes and wave their claws at people passing by and in general keep everyone entertained.

I must say though, that after dark and after a few cocktails, it is important to carry a flashlight with you lest you fall into one of their holes and twist an ankle!

The crab is edible. The meat is reported to be sweet, white and closely resembling that of the popular blue crab. A simple Caribbean recipe calls for boiling the crab with various seasonings. I know that at least one of the restaurants on Guanaja serves these as an appetizer and if you are lucky you will get to enjoy this tasty treat.

Why go to Guanaja? Holy crab, why not?

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Guanaja Hummingbirds ... Flying Jewels!

OK, this is just a quick clip that we caught on video ... these special little hummingbirds that flit about the island paradise of Guanaja.

You have to look close, but at Sharon and Mikes' house they are everywhere. Too cool to imagine, these tiny creatures will land right on your hand and drink nectar out of a cup.

Guanaja is a "hummers" paradise!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Guanaja - Relaxing and Meeting New Friends!

Guanaja is an island that perfect to spend the afternoon relaxing and meeting new friends!

An afternoon trip to Bo's island House and Green Flash Bar is just the place to sip on a cold Cerveza listening to island tunes or pull up a hammock and let the tropical breezes lull you to sleep. There is terrific diving and snorkeling off the beach from Bo's also if you are so inclined.

Brewski Bob felt the need to de-stress after a delightful lunch before the boat ride back home! There is never a need to rush into anything on Guanaja.

While at Bo's, we ran into our friend Jim Jones while he was giving a boat tour to a couple from Vermont. Ann and Jim have been checking out Guanaja from afar for a couple of years and finally decided to check it out for themselves ... much like Alfred and me. Ann, a RN and Jim, in construction, sounded like they weren't disappointed with what they saw. After all, what's not to love about this sun drenched paradise?

The afternoon was coming to a close and we said goodbye to our new friends Ann and Jim. They toasted us as we pulled away in the boat!

Guanaja, Honduras, a Bay Island paradise ... come down and kick the tires for yourself!

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Guanaja - a Special Place with Special People!

Guanaja is indeed a special place with special people ... it boasts of talented people from all over the globe.

There are too many to mention at once, but here are a couple of them. First off there is Brian Hatlelid, author of "A Sunny Place for Shady People". He is shown here with Brewski Bob after personally signing a copy for him. Brian lives on his sailboat and is anchored in the bay off of Manati Restaurant and Bar.

Another local "star" is Ian, a British ex-pat who lives on the island. A talented artist, he designs the artwork for t-shirts as well as painting murals and signs throughout the island. When he is not creating, he can also be found "jamming" at the Manati. Ian plays a mean keyboard as well as drums!
Of course, this is only two of the many multi-talented people on Guanaja ...... with every person comes an interesting story. Sometime when you aren't busy maybe you should just wander on down to this Bay Island paradise and check it out for yourself!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Guanaja - an Island Tour

Taking a tour of Guanaja on a lazy Sunday afternoon ... what could be better? We boarded the "Fishing Tales", a 36 foot Viking sport fish for the afternoon, with Captain Baxter at the helm. The crystal clear water of the Caribbean Sea beneath the boat and balmy tropical breezes blowing in our faces ... WOW!

It is difficult to put into words the island beauty ... Guanaja offers so much, from wonderful sugar sand beaches to rocky coastlines ..... lush foliage and pine trees, mountain tops, waterfalls and a lot of fresh water streams. Truly my idea of an island paradise.

I'm not sure what I love the most, but the whole package just seems to come together quite nicely.

Another really positive aspect to Guanaja is the fact that it is surrounded by the world's second largest barrier reef ... only to be outdone by the great barrier reef in Australia. This reef protects the island from a lot of potentially damaging waves and currents.

Fresh water is abundant on Guanaja and there are fresh water, waterfalls and streams that come down from the mountain side. Everyone taps into this source and the water is good enough to drink right from the tap! Guanaja is the only Bay Island that has fresh water, a plus indeed.

The main question when deciding where to live is, do you want the mountains with an ocean view or do you want to walk out your front door and squish your toes in the sand. Both have so much to offer .... decisions, decisions...

Guanaja Honduras, a Bay Island paradise.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Ring Game Competition in Guanaja!

A ring game has been installed at the Castaways Resort in Guanaja and has caused all sorts of competitions to spring up. Here we have Brewski Bob, fresh off the US ring game circuit representing Club Brown International, showing the locals how it is done!

It is a good thing that all that was lost that day were bottle caps!


Tuesday, May 6, 2008

A Lively Saturday Afternoon in Guanaja Honduras!

Saturday afternoon at the Manati Restaurant and Bar in Guanaja went from lively to "jamming" as the evening progressed!

Great food, cold drinks and lot's old and new friends meeting for a day of fun. Music was provided by the Guanaja Boys. Everyone in attendance agreed the evening was quite a success!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Guanaja Honduras - a Saturday Morning in Paradise!

AHHHHH .... a spectacular Saturday morning in Guanaja ... this is Brewski's first full day here. The beauty is amazing. Bob comes over to our side of the duplex and we sip on virgin Mary's as we watch the waves gently lap the shore and listen to the birds in the distance. I think that perhaps we all celebrated his arrival to enthusiastically with Rum Punch last night and we are moving a bit slow today.

The ferry from Savannah Bight comes by overflowing with people ready to start the weekend. HOLY SMOKES, you think they have room for one more?

We wander over to the Castaways Restaurant where they fill our bellies with Denver Omelette's and hot coffee .... thank you very much, I think we will live!

Our day begins ........

Friday, May 2, 2008

Mayor Richmond of Guanaja Meets Prince Houdini

It started out as a regular day in Guanaja ... little did we know that we would have the honor of meeting the Mayor of this island paradise.

Harlon Richmond Hurlston, Alcalde Municipal, Mayor of Guanaja Islas de la Bahia, gave us a few minutes of his time for a quick interview. It was an honor that I hadn't expected. As we entered his office, above the door was a sign stating "No Corruption" ... how great is that? Something that many US politicians could take a lesson from!

Mayor Richmond's message was simple. He is concerned with his island's economy, tourism and the environment. The mayor wants tourism to flourish and to have these same tourists to return because of favorable experiences. The government has made money available just for this purpose.

Right now they are currently upgrading the sewer system to accommodate the growing population on Bonacca Town and construction has begun on a new terminal at the airport. After all, this is the first place that a tourist sees.

Mayor Richmond graciously posed for a picture with me and Houdini. It is probably the first time he has posed with a crazy American woman and a small white dog!

Thank you for your time Mayor Richmond. I look forward to visiting Guanaja, your island paradise again.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Guanaja Honduras - Brewski Bob Arrives!

What could be better......our good friend Brewski Bob has arrived in Guanaja Honduras to join us for the last week of our vacation?

We met Bob at the airstrip in Guanaja and the first two items that I handed him were a ice cold bottle of beer and a full spray bottle of deep woods off. Both items are a necessity for island living! The beer, Bob understood, but the bug spray? I told him to trust me on this and to use it immediately.

The airport in Guanaja is quite informal ... actually a couple of other attempts have been made to build new terminals, but for now it is comprised of a landing strip, a building that is used for storage and if you are very brave, a toilet! The Thirst and Last Stop is usually open for beverages and is owned by one of the local business men Captain Al.

We gathered up Bob's bags and soon we were cruising off on the "Fishing Tales", the Castaways Resorts fishing boat to show him his new home for the next week.

We were staying at the Castaways Resort and Marina in Guanaja and each of us had one side of the duplex. Each side had one bedroom, one bath and a large living room decorated with heavy island style furniture made right there in Honduras. Air conditioning and fans in every room, although the breezes off the Caribbean kept us cool and we never used the AC. The resort restaurant opened at 8:00am and stayed open until the last guest left in the evening and they featured good Honduran home cooking.

Depending how many rum punches we had consumed, in the afternoons, we would climb the stairs up to the "widows walk" on top of our rooms ... I don't know which was better, the oceans view or the starry night time view ... both were spectacular!

Another wonderful day in Guanaja, it's tough, but someone has to do it!