Located in Central America, Honduras is mountainous and forested although widespread slash-and-burn subsistence farming is destroying many forests. The largely mestizo population speaks Spanish, with English common on the northern coast and Bay Islands. Mayan ruins at Copan, which represent the wealth of the past in what today is one of the region's poorest nations, help diversify the economy with tourist revenue. Although agricultural products are plentiful, mostly bananas and coffee, they have failed to enliven the economy of this tenuous democracy. The 2003 U.S.-Central American Free Trade Agreement brings economic hope.
Click on map above to see a video on youtube about Honduras
Columbus first set foot on the American mainland in Trujillo in 1502
Named the region Honduras (meaning great depth) for the deep water off the coast.
The Spaniards soon moved into the cooler highlands and were constantly battling with native tribes, including Chief Lemira's army of 30,000, who almost drove the Spanish out of the region until he was murdered while attending peace talks in 1537.
Comayagua (co-my-a-gwa) was declared the Spanish colonial capital a year later.
When gold and silver was discovered around Tegucigalpa in 1570, British and Dutch ships began attacking treasure galleons headed out of Trujillo.
Pirates settled the Caribbean coast and looted and burned Trujillo in 1643.
The British established a protectorate along the Caribbean coasts, ostensibly to keep the area free of pirates and protect the native Miskito tribes; but British fortunes were made from the mahogany forests of the region.
Honduras broke free from Spain in 1821 and first became part of an independent Mexico.
The Honduran Republic was established in 1838, and the British relinquished the Caribbean coastal region in 1859.
Honduras is located in Central America, bordering the Caribbean Sea, between Guatemala and Nicaragua and bordering the Gulf of Fonseca (North Pacific Ocean), between El Salvador and Nicaragua
Terrain mostly mountains in interior and narrow coastal plains.
Natural hazards include: frequent but mild earthquakes and extremely high cases of hurricanes and floods along the Caribbean coast
Has only a short Pacific coast but a long Caribbean shoreline, including the virtually uninhabited eastern Mosquito Coast