Roatan Island, Honduras hosts thousands of tourists daily via cruise ships as well as direct flights from the US. This was the third and last stop on our Carnival cruise and the one dock we didn’t have any excursions planned. We ended up renting a car and driving to the West End of the island where most of the tours go. There we found shops, restaurants, a chocolate factory and a coffee shop. At the moment, it didn’t even occur to me we were in Honduras, one of the world’s leading harvest and exporter of coffee. *face palm* So if you’re looking for coffee on Roatan Island, it’s there at Chestnut Coffee Roasters.
Fun Facts About Coffee On Roatan Island
Before I dive into a review of this quaint little coffee shop, let’s talk about coffee on Roatan Island. First of all, coffee doesn’t actually grow ON the island. The weather is humid, hot and incredibly wet. While tropical climates are ideal for coffee trees, they really grow best in higher elevations and prefer 64-70 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, there is a lot of salt in the air and in the soil on Roatan Island which affects the growth of the coffee trees. All of the coffee that is on the island is imported from the Honduran mainland.
Chestnut Gourmet Coffee Roasters
Literally a hole in the wall, Chestnut Coffee Roasters is a tiny little coffee shop on the main drag on the West End of Roatan Island. There is a cute little porch with a couple of tables and seating to enjoy the beach scenery across the street and inside there is room for five people. Chestnut roasts all of their coffee in a small batch roaster that sits just off to the side of the front door. A nutty scent fills the air as fresh roasted beans are cooling. Coffee is roasted daily and used to make their specialty drinks after it has cooled the required 24-48 hours depending on type of roast. They also sell fresh roasted coffee in bulk as well. Since our visit back in August, Chestnut Gourmet has moved and opened a new more roomy location in Sandy Bay. According to their Facebook page, they have moved to Sandy Bay area as of November 12 and the new location looks amazing! I’ll definitely be looking forward to another visit!
I decided on a cold brew as it was crazy hot the day we visited. It was nutty, well balanced and bold. The service was fantastic and the paper cup and paper straw was a plus. The barista was holding down the shop herself taking orders, holding a conversation and making the drinks like a pro. Besides the chocolate factory, this was the best place we came across on the island.
Next Time: Take an Excursion
Next time we visit Roatan Island, we will more than likely stay in Mahogany Bay or take a tour to the West End. I’m all about “do as the locals do” but it’s a bit challenging when you’re on your own as a tourist. Having a tour guide to show you around is really key when visiting abroad. The plus side? We crossed paths with this unique small batch roaster, learned a bit about Honduran coffee and enjoyed some fresh roasted coffee in a foreign land. And frankly, no tour would have allowed us to experience that. Now that I hear they have moved, I’m excited to get back and see all that Sandy Bay has to offer!
Needless to say, our cruise took us to places we wouldn’t have visited on our own. It’s one of our favorite ways to travel! Follow us over on Instagram to see what other places we stopped! What interesting sites have you seen in other countries?