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Smile x Wanderer x Turtle Bay Eco | Honduras 2016

When we visit all these different places we like to bond with the local people, experience what they experience, leaving a good impact and showing what good energy can accomplish. We bring gifts and good conversations as our way of sharing the vibe. On this trip we visited Cayos Cochinos off the coast of Honduras, thanks to the host Turtle Bay Eco Resort.

Two hour plane ride, two hour bus ride, and a two hour boat ride finally got us to our destination. Passing the guarded gate we saw big steel vessels lifted up on blocks with the names princess and my lady written on them. They say that these boats were named after the captains wives or mistresses, and there may be some irony in that. Maybe what once was a bustling port was now just a ghost town of beautifully painted old boats that seemed to have seen their last days on the water. Our driver pulled up to the Melissa and we got out.

Greeted by the giant smiles of a couple of our hosts, Lisanne and Kay, we became distracted by where we were and comfortable to shove off to sea. The real beauty started to show itself. Exiting the port was something from a movie - mountains in the background and calm flat water ahead of us. It was a dreamland from far but we had no idea how right we were until we got a little closer to our destination. The water changed from greenish brown to turquoise. We passed little sand islands with only a handful of palm trees and a little shack on them. We claimed how we could easily live there and never look back. It was refreshing to say the least.

In the morning hummingbirds dashed around the hibiscus flowers in front of our place It felt as if nothing bad ever happened here at Cayos Cochinos. It was peaceful. There were no real threats. Everything seemed to coexist with each other and the waves played their song the entire time. We all made our way to breakfast and talked about the day ahead. We were going to head into the village, called East End, a few beaches around the bend from us. It was a nice little hike along the coastline, and we were able to see how the some of the locals live.

Around the first bend and down the first ledge of rocks, the scenery opened up to a gorgeous private beach with a tiki dock and a couple local dogs running around. The first thing to catch our eyes however was a row of colorful plastic that lined the shore as if it had just washed up. This was worrying but maybe it was just on this beach and the locals haven't done their part to clean it yet. We kept trekking.

Beach after beach was more beautiful than the last but the garbage never went away. It got thicker the further we went. The less locals there were, the more trash that seemed to wash on shore. How could this be? Why was there so much plastic lining this amazing coast? Lisanne enlightened us that the tradewinds and currents push alot of the surrounding countrys' trash out to these islands and they become a catch-all for not only Honduran garbage but for other countries as well. It was a never-ending problem that only gets worse as the rest of the world consumes at an unruly pace. It wasn't their fault, yet they were the ones left to deal with our waste. Something has to be done.

Walking into the village, we immediately saw love in the kids' eyes. They took pride in the name painted on the building and showed us where their class room was. Our hearts melted as we sat down with them. Getting to know them over that week was such a genuine experience. Even though there was a language barrier there was still understanding.


Thankfully we were able to help Turtle Bay jumpstart their bond with the neighboring village so they can start educating the kids about the sea life that supports their culture. This includes dive trips, recycling programs and other educational outings. We look forward to returning to Honduras to continue the relationship we have started.

A lot of people as us how how they can become apart of this idea? Anyone can join the movement from anywhere in the world. Just share the vibe on the trips you take or even in your own community. All it takes to get started is a smile.

To see a recap of our trip watch the video at the start of this post! Join the Movement.

xx, the smile tribe


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