Selfie.One thing I never thought I would do: ride 12 hours in a microbus across Honduras (followed by a one-hour ferry ride) to go scuba diving at the second-largest barrier reef in the world. But I did, and it was pretty freaking awesome.Moray eel.Kail and I joined some friends on a group buceo trip to Utila, Honduras — one of the Bay Islands on the Caribbean Sea — organized through Oceanica, where we took our diving certification classes.I finally swam in the Caribbean!Utila is the third largest of Honduras’s Bay Islands, after Roatán and Guanaja, and part of the largest reef system in the Western hemisphere and the second-largest in the world (the largest is the Great Barrier Reef).Having very little prior buceo experience (Lago Ilopango in El Salvador and Golfo de Papagayo in Costa Rica), I don’t have much basis for comparison, but diving in Utila was spectacular.Stacy and a sea turtle.We saw sea turtles and eels and rays all kinds of colorful fish. We dove a shipwreck and did a night dive. We swam with dolphins.We got close enough to almost touch them!Kail and I doubled the number of dives we have done — previously eight, plus eight more in Utila for a total of 16. Eight dives! In thee days! (It was a five-day trip, but as previously mentioned, two of those days were spent in more than 12 hours of transit).Ferry from La Ceiba to Utila.We departed San Salvador at 4:00 a.m. I listened to almost all of John Grisham’s “Sycamore Row” on my iPod. (Generally I am not a fan of books on tape but I can’t read in a car because I get motion sickness.) For $600 — which included eight dives (and equipment rental), transportation and four nights at the hotel — it was totally worth it.On the ferry, tired after a long drive.I feel like a real diver now. I felt a little more experienced after our first ocean buceo in Costa Rica, but after doing dive after dive after dive (three dives two days in a row and two dives the last day) in Utila, I feel a lot more comfortable with the equipment and in the water. No expert by any means, but I am able to actually enjoy being in the water and seeing things instead of focusing so much on buoyancy, breathing and other technique-related things.Team Oceanica!A big part of what made the trip so fun — and what made the dives comfortable and enjoyable — were our dive masters (and drivers), David and Walter, both from Oceanica. They are the best! Seriously, our lives were in their hands. Thanks for keeping us alive!“You!” David is either reprimanding Michele, or asking how much air she has left.Team Walter!I already knew from my experience diving in the lake that diving is exhausting. But diving multiple times in a day? Even more so. We didn’t do a lot other than dive and eat and dive and sleep, but I’ll share a little bit more about the rest of our trip — along with some underwater videos — later.Selfie.If you’re looking to do a diving trip on a budget — or even just a beach trip where you can snorkel — I highly recommend Utila.See more photos from Utila, Honduras.What’s the longest car ride you’ve been on?