Although it sits right off CA 5, between the major metropolises of San Pedro Sula and Tegucigalpa, far too few travelers do more than see this breathtaking lake out the bus window. Covering 89 sq. km (34 sq. miles), at 700m (2,297 ft.) above sea level and surrounded by misty pine-covered mountains that rise straight out of the water in places, coffee fincas, and two national parks, this is the largest natural lake in the country and is one of Central America's most overlooked natural attractions. The tranquil setting is home to several great hotels and guesthouses -- not to mention dozens of fish restaurants with awe-inspiring views -- so it's mind boggling that the place isn't swarming with busloads of tourists like Lake Atitlán in Guatemala.

Not that this is a bad thing, though. The serenity is the chief reason why most come. One group of travelers has long visited Yojoa: birders. These intense, dedicated enthusiasts come from around the world on very detailed tours in the hopes of spotting the rare and vast number of species that Yojoa is known for. Nearly 400 species have been identified on the lake and on its shores, making it one of the preeminent birding destinations in a country already known for birding. If you left your binoculars and avian identification charts at home, there are still plenty of ways to enjoy the setting, from renting a rowboat, to hiking in either of the two cloud forests, to touring a Lenca archeological site or just sampling beers in one of the country's only microbreweries.