The Three Lies of Roatan

At some point in time, whether your visit to Roatan is short and sweet or long and leisurely, you will most definitely hear one or more of the infamous “THREE LIES OF ROATAN”. Unfortunately, knowing beforehand that these are lies does not seem to affect people’s overwhelming desire to believe the lie. The locals (islanders and foreigners alike) all know these lies – don’t let them try to trick you with one, and don’t mind if they laugh at you when they hear you saying them. Good luck!


1)      “I’m not drinking tonight.”

Trying not to drink on Roatan is like trying not to breathe. At the end of a day of diving, snorkeling, ziplining, suntanning or just relaxing, to be honest there isn’t much else to do than grab some food and start swilling $2 Salva Vidas. It doesn’t really matter if you’re sunburnt, broke or hungover – you’re pretty much going to drink here whether you want to or not.


2)      “I love you!”

Do not trust this sentence coming from tourists or islanders. Ever.  There is something about such a small island and tiny population that makes people feel – ahem – a lot closer than they actually are. Also, see #1…that usually goes hand in hand with #2. Enough shots of giffity (a ridiculously strong traditional drink created by pouring crappy rum over various roots and letting it steep in the sun) will make you think you love everyone.


3)      “I’m leaving tomorrow.”

The number of times I have said this and it’s ended up being a lie is actually quite a few. Those of us who live here call it the ‘Roatan Vortex’ – it just seems to suck you in, and before you know it you can’t get out. And when you do get out, you usually end up back here not long after. I’m not sure how to explain it… you’ll know once you’re here. Roatan gets in your blood. I once met someone who came here on holiday and never left… TWELVE YEARS ago. We have seen enough tourists change their ticket home over and over to know that “I’m leaving tomorrow” is usually a lie unless you’ve got a sick dog or your kids at home. So go ahead – change that ticket!



The three lies of Roatan are applicable in Utila as well… it must be a Bay Islands thing. Check out the popular ‘If You Come to Utila’ video where you’ll see the three lies acted out!

 – rika