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Batalla

What to See & Do -- Outside of watching the local women make casaba bread, there are two tours the community has set up for travelers; these can be arranged on arrival, though it is better to set them up ahead with La Ruta Moskitia. The first is a 2-hour cultural activity that takes place in the evening, where the 20-odd-member village folkloric dance and drum group perform Garífuna songs and dances, followed by a traditional Garífuna meal (generally seafood soup, and coconut and ginger bread).

The second, a boat tour in Laguna Bacalar, has long been the most popular tour out of Palacios, where it can be arranged, as well, though the guides tend to be more enthusiastic from Batalla. You'll travel by motorized canoe through canals through the mangrove forests that line the edges of the lagoon while looking for birds, monkeys (howler and white-face), and the highly endangered Caribbean manatee.

Prices for both activities are dependent on how many people will attend, though they are usually between L180 and L300 per person.

Palacios

What to See & Do -- As tourism efforts shift to Batalla, there is even less to do in Palacios than in years past. As long as you have low expectations, you will survive. The town's one attraction, the Río Plátano Biosphere Museum on the main drag, has basic displays with facts on the reserve, but was shuttered at last check.

Plaplaya

What to See & Do -- Like in Batalla, if you have a group together, you can arrange a Garífuna cultural night with a traditional meal. More unique to Plaplaya, though, is a seasonal grassroots conservation project. From April to July, the village becomes involved with the Sea Turtle Conservation Project. With the help of volunteers, everyone joins together to help protect the loggerhead and leatherback turtles that nest on Plaplaya's beaches annually. Duties involve collecting the eggs, which hatch 3 months later, and reburying them in a protected sanctuary before poachers and animals get to them. Ask in town for Dona Patrocinia for more information.

Laguna de Caratasca and Eastern La Mosquitia

What to See & Do -- While there is little to do in town -- La Ruta Moskitia has yet to set up a local affiliation, though they are looking into it -- there are several small, pleasant Miskito towns on different parts of the lagoon that can be visited for a day or two.

Mistruk, 18km (11 miles) south of Puerto Lempira, on the side of a sparkling clear freshwater lagoon, is the easiest option. A series of thatched-roof wooden bungalows (L400-L450) with private bathrooms and solar power, and fronting a relaxed beach, is a favorite of weekenders. You can get here by road from Puerto Lempira, turning right at the fork toward Mistruk, rather than Leimus and the border. A round-trip taxi here for the day will run you about L650, but you can easily rent a bike in town near the pier (L100-L150 per day) to get here in a few hours.

More isolated is Kaukira, which is reached only by boat from Puerto Lempira. There is a simple cabin there for visitors to rent (L100). There is excellent bird-watching, including frequent sightings of macaws. You can also walk to a nice beach in 20 minutes or so from the pier. A few villagers actually speak English here and can even set up hikes and multiday tours into the surrounding jungle. Colectivo boats (L100; 1 1/2 hr.) leave Kaukira at 6am and return from Puerto Lempira's main pier around 10am, which make day trips all but impossible. You can hire an expreso boat for around L1,100, though few do.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.