Honduras is one of the five republics that arose in Central America after the region declared independence from Spain in 1821. It wasn’t until 1838 that it became a nation state. Honduras has about the same size of the state of Tennessee and a great biodiversity. It lies on the eastern side of the isthmus and borders Guatemala to the west, El Salvador to the west and Nicaragua in the east. Part of it stretches across the isthmus to the Gulf of Fonseca to give it a pacific coast too. Most of its coastline is along the Caribbean Sea. The bay islands share the second longest barrier reef in the world with Belize.
Mainly a mountainous country, it also boasts plains on the eastern coast. The climate is hotter in the central and southern regions, more humid in the north. In the low lying Mosquitia region there is jungle and also mangrove swamps. In the highlands there are rain and cloud forests too. Within Honduras there are three great national parks, The Rio Platano biosphere, Pico Bonito and Celaque.
Honduras is one of the poorest countries in the region, where fifty per cent of the population live under the poverty line. It has been racked with military dictatorships and foreign interference in the past and is struggling with development.
The capital city is Tegucigalpa. The population is over 8 million. Climates range from hot and humid in the tropics to temperate in the mountains. The official language is Spanish, but Miskito is also widely spoken. The political system is democratic. The currency is the Lempira. Apart from fruit, the main exports are sugar, coffee and tobacco and now are also timber, gold and silver. Phone code 504.