people of Roatan

People of Roatan

Garifuna Friends, Rio Esteban Honduras
People of Honduras

Roatan has a mixture of ethnic backgrounds and cultures. The largest ethnic population in Honduras descended from a mixture of Indians and Spanish. Their language is Spanish, which is the national language. This group of Indian and Spanish ancestry is now the largest ethnic group on Roatan.

Roatan was once predominately black. Most of the people of African ancestry on Roatan are English speaking. The Garifuna tribe speaks their native African language of Garifuna and Spanish.

Some Roatan inhabitants descended from settlers from the United States and Europe. The white people that settled on Roatan long ago came from different backgrounds - pirates that plundered settlements and Spanish gold ships, civil war soldiers from the Confederacy that were unwilling to yield to the Union, and plantation holders from other Caribbean islands.

Many islanders are a mix of the three major ethnic groups, and distinctions between ethnic origins are becoming less apparent.