Honduras was already occupied by many indigenous peoples when the Spanish arrived in the 16th century. The western-central part of Honduras was inhabited by the Lencas, the central north coast by the Tol, the area east and west of Trujillo by the Pech (or Paya), the Maya and Sumo. These autonomous groups maintained commercial relationships with each other and with other populations as distant as Panama and Mexico.
This Central American country has a 3,000-year-old Mayan culture, beautiful beaches, and delicious cuisine. Honduras’ tropical weather enriches its lush flora and fauna. Slightly larger than the state of Tennessee, Honduras is mountainous and the only Central American country without active volcanoes. Food and drinks are the center of social gatherings, and Hondurans will enjoy sharing their culture, including dancing Punta, a traditional Honduran dance. Since Hondurans generally consider people to be more important than schedules, being late for appointments or social events is a common way of living. Ninety percent of Honduras’ population is mestizo (mixed Spanish and indigenous heritage) while only about seven percent has indigenous ancestry.