A Visit to Rancho San Luis in La Ceiba

Rancho San Luis is an agricultural property that is about 25 km east of La Ceiba. It is within the buffer area of the Nombre de Dios National park. In addition to some cattle and dairy production, the property, that is within the municipality of Jutiapa, also hosts a collection of local animals, mostly native to the area, but also from other regions of the World. Many locals refer to this a small zoo, but in my opinion, it is more a collection of animals than an actual zoo.  Animals are kept in clean spaces and well fed, but in mi opinion their cages are way to small.

Rancho San Luis

There are many white tail deer at Rancho San Luis

Getting to Rancho San Luis is very easy. Take the CA13 highway eastbound from La Ceiba in direction of Trujillo. Keep an eye out for the Agua Blanca Village. This is the area where the Cacao Lagoon and the USHA wellness center are located. It is also quite close to the Sambo Creek hot springs. You will see a sign clearly indicating where the entrance to Rancho San Luis is located.

Navigating the Mangrove canals

A tour at Cacao Lagoon

There is a 30-lempira entrance fee to the premises, which are used to keep the area clean. There you will find a swimming pool as well as a variety of different animals. The most visible mammals are the white tail deer, which, incidentally, is the national animal of Honduras. This deer is native to the region, but unfortunately has been over hunted for a long time. You will also find racoons, foxes and other local animals. The most representative reptile in exhibit is a cayman. But without doubt, they are more different species of birds that anything else.

Rancho San Luis

Rancho San Luis has its own tilapia fish ponds

Without doubt, the most spectacular birds here are the scarlet macaws. These beautiful birds are the national bird of Honduras, and once were common in the area. You will also find the large green macaw, that is also native to Honduras. Both species once roamed the Nombre de Dios mountains freely. I also found some other native birds that are large and therefore usually hunted for their meat. There are also many other birds that are not native to the area, such as peacocks and different species of hens. You will enjoy some time getting up close to the birds at Rancho San Luis near La Ceiba.