Cruise and Beach Destinations
in the Caribbean, Mexico & Beyond

Roatan Zip Line Excursions

Caribbean zip lining
One of the more popular activities that take place on Roatan for vacationers and cruise visitors alike is zip lining.

For anyone new to this kind of adventure, zip lining requires climbing a ladder to the top of a platform or tree, hooking a safety harness to a wire, and gliding along a series of long cables from one platform or tree to the next.

Think of it as a form of flying without wings.

Our own zip line adventure in the Caribbean led us up a tall tree and taking that scary first plunge. Only one person in the entire group backed out. The rest of us had a blast.

Safety is the first concern for anyone going on a zip line tour. Reputable companies offer two cables strung between each platform -- one for the hookup and a second as a safety backup. Experience guides should accompany each group.

“We inspect each zipline, all harnesses and every clip every day before and after business hours. A detailed inspection of all cables and connections are performed each week. We have weekly reviews of safety practices with all our guides," one of the companies claims.

For anyone visiting Roatan, there are at least four companies that offer zip line adventures.

South Shore Canopy and Zip Line Tours

South Shore says it offers 16 platforms, eight suspension bridges, 28 acres and 11 steel suspension cables strung among the trees. Zip lining and a 30-40 minute hike that includes the suspension bridges are two separate activities that can be purchased together or separately.

The longest cable is 1,300 feet with the highest point more than 100 feet in the air, the company says. The total length is about two miles or three kilometers long and takes anywhere from 60 to 90 minutes.

The price for the zip line tour is $45 for adults and $40 for children 10 and under. Children must be older than 5 years to take part.

South Shore Canopy Tours is located about five minutes from West End and West Bay on the southwest tip of the island. That makes it more convenient for resort visitors than cruise visitors. It's about a 25-minute drive from Mahogany Bay cruise port and 10 minutes from Port of Roatan.

The Web site for booking and more information is located at

Roatan Pirates Canopy

Pirates of the Caribbean Canopy tour offers the same total length at about two miles, but the company says its highest point is 328 feet and the longest distance between two platforms is 1,980 feet.

The company calls its tour “Extremely Extreme" because of the height and distance. The cost is $65 per person.

The duration is 40 to 90 minutes depending on the size of the group.

Roatan Pirates Canopy offers a second zip line tour for $45 that is less extreme. The highest point is 145 feet and the longest distance between two platforms is 627 feet.

It is located about 15 minutes northeast of Port of Roatan and 10-15 minutes from the Mahogany Bay terminal.

The Web site is

Clip‘N'Zip Line

Clip‘N'Zip is the newest zip line tour in Roatan and claims to be the closest to the cruise terminals.

It is across the street from the Mahogany Bay cruise terminal and a seven to 10 minute drive from the Port of Roatan dock.

The zip lines are located in a 150-acre nature park. The total length of the tour is 1.8 kilometers or about one mile. The highest point is 65 feet.

The cost is $59.99 per person.

The company says it emphasizes safety by using three cables -- two for clipping and one as a safety backup -- as well as providing 200 hours of training to its staff members.

Web site:

Jungle Top Zip Line

This company's Web site does not offer information about the type of tour, heights and distances. The price is $45 per person.

Web site:

Tips on How to Purchase

Anyone going on a cruise or staying at a Roatan resort will find it easy and somewhat more expensive to book a zip line tour through the cruise ship or resort.

That's because they work directly with the tour operator and mark up the prices to pay for their efforts. The customer pays for the convenience.

The second way to book is by going through major travel operators such as Expedia, Viator and others that doing much of the same thing as the cruise lines and resorts.

The least expensive way of all is by going to the zip line operator Web sites above and booking the tours directly. Tourists will get the same service for less money.
Scott S. Bateman is a professional journalist who has traveled widely throughout the Caribbean and the Americas.

 > Category: Recreation   

November 29, 2014
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