50 Fascinating Facts about Honduras

The Central American country of Honduras is bordered to the west by Guatemala and El Salvador, and to the southeast by Nicaragua. Its southern coast lies along the Pacific Ocean at the Gulf of Fonseca, and its northern coast by the Gulf of Honduras, an inlet of the Caribbean Sea. Honduras was home to several important Mesoamerican cultures, including the Maya, known for its hieroglyphic writing system, art, architecture, mathematics, calendar, and astronomical system. Honduras was invaded by the Spanish in the sixteenth century, introducing a long period of colonial rule that ended in 1821. Since then, Honduras has been through many years of political instability, corruption and poverty, and it remains one of the poorest countries in South America. Despite this, Honduras has a rich and diverse culture centered on music, art and festivals. Much of the country's cultural diversity can be attributed to the diversity of its population, which made up of a number of ethnic groups that bring their own histories and traditions to cultural life in Honduras.

Honduras Facts

1
Honduras is located in Central America and borders the Caribbean Sea
2
The Spanish translation of Honduras is depths
3
The currency in Honduras is the Honduran Lempira which was named after an Indian chief who fought against the Spanish army
4
The National flag consists of stars and stripes. The stripes represent the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea and the five stars represent the 5 Central American countries
5
The capital of Honduras is Tegucigalpa which is also known as Tegus
6
It is recognised to be the second poorest country as income is the lowest in that region
7
The rate of people aged 65+ is only 41% with the excess mortality resulting from Aids
8
Officially recognised as the Republic of Honduras
9
Is known as Spanish Honduras to not confuse it with British Honduras which is now known as Belize
10
Spanish is the dominant language with Honduran sign language also being widely recognised
11
The majority of Hondurans follow the Roman Catholic Church
12
The economy at one point was solely dependent on the export of coffee and bananas
13
As a result of this, Honduras has also been known as and referred to as the banana republic, a name that was adopted in 1904
14
Honduras holds the world’s highest murder rates
15
Femicide and sexual violence against women is a major issue and very widespread in Honduras
16
Many women are forced into human trafficking and prostitution
17
Honduras is renowned for its highway assaults, carjackings and kidnappings
18
The majority of people/families of victims will not report the kidnapping to the police but pay the ransom instead out of fear
19
Christopher Columbus discovered Honduras in 1502 as he was the first ever European explorer to visit the Bay Islands which are on the coast of Honduras
20
The national anthem was adopted on 15th November 1915 and is a result of a contest that had been carried out in 1914
21
Honduras became an independent nation on 15th September 1821
22
The Hondurans are frequently referred to as Catracho, the name taken from the Honduran General Florencio Xatruch who led the army as the North Americans tried unsuccessfully to invade
23
Honduras’ national bird is the Scarlet Macaw and is considered sacred
24
Two species of deer can be found in Honduras, one of them being the white-tailed deer which is also recognised as its National Animal
25
The national flower is the orchid, also known as Rhyncholaelia Digbyana which replaced the rose in 1969
26
Honduras houses many plant and animal species and has over 700 bird species
27
The main music in Honduras is known as Punta
28
Soccer is the main sport
29
The Honduran national motto is Libre, Soberana e independiente which literally means free, sovereign and independent
30
Honduras is the second in the world with the most Coral Reefs, following Australia who is the first
31
It is very common for the people of Honduras to always use coconut milk when they are cooking, for both sweet and savoury dishes
32
Many typical Honduran dishes consist of a wide range of tropical fruits which are always prepared while they are still green
33
Lake Yojoa is the largest source of fresh water
34
The income in Honduras is the lowest there is in North America, with the average income being approximately 600USD
35
Honduras was recognised as a food priority country by the United Nations
36
The first cinema in Central America was opened in Honduras
37
Honduras is the first country that banned smoking in your own home, and also introduced the law of standing at least 2 metres away from non-smokers whilst smoking
38
Cerro Las Minas is the highest mountain in Honduras
39
Independence Day is celebrated on the 15th September
40
As well as Independence Day being celebrated from early in the morning with marching bands, Fiest Catracha also takes place on this day where people gather together to share a traditional Honduran meal
41
On the 10th September, Children’s’ Day or Dia Del Nino as it is also recognised as, is celebrated and the children receive presents and have parties as they would if it was their birthday
42
Dia Del Nino is celebrated to acknowledge the importance of youth and childhood
43
May 15th is also a national holiday and is known as the La Feria Isidra Celebration
44
La Feria Isidra is a festival in La Ceiba and is held in memory of the Patron Saint. Celebrations normally begin a week before, with carnivals held in the neighbourhoods and plazas every night
45
Hurricane Mitch that occurred in 1998, was the biggest and second deadliest Atlantic hurricane that had been recorded since the Great Hurricane of Antilles in 1780
46
Hurricane Mitch was so destructive and tragic, that 80% of rice harvest and all banana crop was destroyed, as well as roads, homes and bridges resulting in a total loss estimated at 3 billion USD as well as 11,000 people losing their lives
47
On the 14th July 1969 El Salvador put in motion a war on Honduras
48
This war is also referred to as the football war, implying that it was a conflict over football, when in fact, the main issues and conflict were with regards to land
49
It is also known as the 100 Hour War, as it ended on 18th July 1969, with the El Salvador army in Honduras finally being withdrawn on the 20th July
50
A peace treaty between Honduras and El Salvador was eventually signed on the 30th October 1980

The geography of Honduras consists mainly of mountains and narrow plains along the coasts. There is a lowland jungle, La Mosquitia, in the northeast. This region is also home to the Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its wide variety of plant and animal life. The Coco River divides Honduras from neighboring Nicaragua, while the Islas de la Bahía and the Swan Islands are off the north coast of Honduras. The country has many natural resources, including gold, silver, copper, lead, zinc, and coal. Its climate varies from tropical in the lowlands to temperate in the mountains.

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