Parque Nacional Punta Sal was renamed after the Honduran activist and President of PROLANSATE, Jeannette Kawas Fernández, who was killed after establishing the park amid controversy from business groups who claimed the land. Few will argue, though, about the amazing biodiversity in the 782 sq. km (302 sq. mile) park. Wildlife found here includes marine turtles, dolphins, manatees, caimans, migratory birds (especially Nov-Feb), ocelots, peccaries, monkeys, and many others.

Located on the western end of the Bay of Tela, the park is divided into two parts: the lagoon and the peninsula. Acting as a barrier for Tela Bay from the nortes, strong winds that blow in the winter months, the peninsula is made up of a triple threat of postcard-perfect beaches, pristine coral reefs, and lush green jungle -- dolphins and howler monkeys are regularly seen during the snorkel tours here. Los Micos Lagoon is separated by a small sandbar from the ocean, and surrounding it are numerous canals that weave through mangrove forests where hundreds of bird and animal species can be seen.

Nearly every tour operator in Tela, including Garífuna Tours (tel. 504/2448-2904), leads almost daily tours to either the peninsula or the lagoon. You can also hire a boat in Miami, though prices are similar and will not include transportation from Tela. Touts with boats on the municipal beach in Tela also sell tours to Punta Sal, though they lack information on the wildlife and culture, and the boats are less comfortable. You can haggle down for the cheapest prices, especially if you have a large group.