Demographics of Honduras

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A village in Copan. Copan village, in departmento de Copan.jpg
A village in Copán.
Talanga road, Honduras. Talanga road Honduras.jpg
Talanga road, Honduras.

This article is about the ethnic groups and population of Honduras.

Ethnic group Socially defined category of people who identify with each other

An ethnic group or an ethnicity is a category of people who identify with each other based on similarities such as common ancestry, language, history, society, culture or nation. Ethnicity is usually an inherited status based on the society in which one lives. Membership of an ethnic group tends to be defined by a shared cultural heritage, ancestry, origin myth, history, homeland, language or dialect, symbolic systems such as religion, mythology and ritual, cuisine, dressing style, art or physical appearance.

Honduras republic in Central America

Honduras, officially the Republic of Honduras, is a country in Central America. In the past, it was sometimes referred to as "Spanish Honduras" to differentiate it from British Honduras, which later became modern-day Belize. The republic of Honduras is bordered to the west by Guatemala, to the southwest by El Salvador, to the southeast by Nicaragua, to the south by the Pacific Ocean at the Gulf of Fonseca, and to the north by the Gulf of Honduras, a large inlet of the Caribbean Sea.



Census population and average annual growth rate
1791 96,421    
1801 128,453+33.2%
1881 307,289+139.2%
1887 331,917+8.0%
1895 398,877+20.2%
1901 543,741+36.3%
1905 500,136−8.0%
1910 553,446+10.7%
1916 605,997+9.5%
1926 700,811+15.6%
1930 854,184+21.9%
1935 962,000+12.6%
1940 1,107,859+15.2%
1945 1,200,542+8.4%
1950 1,368,605+14.0%
1961 1,884,765+37.7%
1988 4,614,377+144.8%
2001 6,535,344+41.6%
Source: INE [1]

According to the 2017 revision of the World Population Prospects [2] the total population was 9,112,867 in 2016, compared to 1,487,000 in 1950 (a fivefold increase in 60 years). The proportion of the population aged below 15 in 2010 was 36.8%, 58.9% were aged between 15 and 65 years of age, and 4.3% were aged 65 years or older. [3]

As of 2014, 60% of Hondurans live below the poverty line. [4] More than 30% of the population is divided between the lower middle and upper middle class, less than 10% are wealthy or belong to the higher social class (most live in Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula).

Tegucigalpa City in Francisco Morazán, Honduras

Tegucigalpa, colloquially referred to as Téguz, is the capital and largest city of Honduras along with its twin sister, Comayagüela.

San Pedro Sula Place in Cortés, Honduras

San Pedro Sula is the capital of Cortés Department, Honduras. It is located in the northwest corner of the country in the Sula Valley, about 50 kilometres (31 mi) south of Puerto Cortés on the Caribbean Sea. With a census population of 719,063 in 2013, and 1,445,598 people living in its metropolitan area in 2010, it is the nation's primary industrial center and second largest city after the capital Tegucigalpa.

Total population
(x 1000)
aged 0–14
aged 15–64
aged 65+
19501 48742.253.84.0
19551 71744.352.33.4
19602 00246.150.83.2
19652 35347.149.83.1
19702 69147.749.23.1
19753 10847.549.33.2
19803 63647.049.83.2
19854 23846.250.63.2
19904 90445.551.13.4
19955 59244.352.13.6
20006 23642.453.73.9
20056 89939.856.04.1
20107 62136.858.94.3

Structure of the population

Structure of the population (01.07.2007) (estimates) (data refer to projections based on the 2001 Population Census): [5]

Age groupMaleFemaleTotal%
Total3 717 5773 819 3757 536 952100
0-4541 070522 1771 063 24714,11
5-9511 733497 6661 009 39913,39
10-14464 403456 447920 85012,22
15-19402 792400 001802 79310,65
20-24353 317357 434710 7519,43
25-29308 283318 130626 4138,31
30-34255 818266 861522 6796,93
35-39205 171219 874425 0455,64
40-44157 492177 140334 6324,44
45-49128 813147 464276 2773,67
50-54105 428121 993227 4213,02
55-5983 64397 033180 6762,40
60-6463 86373 789137 6521,83
65-6949 40458 136107 5401,43
70-7437 13444 98482 1181,09
75-7924 36830 22554 5930,72
80+24 84530 02154 8660,73
Age groupMaleFemaleTotalPercent
0-141 517 2061 476 2902 993 49639,72
15-642 064 6202 179 7194 244 33956,31
65+135 751163 366299 1173,97

Structure of the population (01.07.2010) (estimates):

Age groupMaleFemaleTotal%
Total3 965 4304 080 5608 045 990100
0-4549 179530 1101 079 28913,41
5-9525 938509 1391 035 07712,86
10-14492 090481 523973 61312,10
15-19434 856431 337866 19310,77
20-24371 818375 696747 5149,29
25-29326 377337 526663 9038,25
30-34282 042295 519577 5617,18
35-39230 506244 378474 8845,90
40-44181 554200 161381 7154,74
45-49140 031161 534301 5653,75
50-54116 240135 378251 6183,13
55-5993 205109 982203 1872,53
60-6472 07185 246157 3171,96
65-6953 83563 955117 7901,46
70-7440 47049 65590 1251,12
75-7927 38134 75762 1380,77
80+27 83734 66462 5010,78
Age groupMaleFemaleTotalPercent
0-141 567 2071 520 7723 087 97938,38
15-642 248 7002 376 7574 625 45757,49
65+149 523183 031332 5544,13

Vital statistics

Registration of vital events is in Honduras not complete. The Population Department of the United Nations prepared the following estimates. [3]

PeriodLive births
per year
per year
Natural change
per year
CBR*CDR*NC*TFR*IMR*Life expectancy
Life expectancy
for males
Life expectancy
for females
1950-195584 00040 00044 00052.124.727.47.5016941.840.543.1
1955-196095 00040 00055 00051.121.529.67.5015444.643.046.3
1960-1965108 00040 00068 00049.518.331.27.4213648.046.349.8
1965-1970122 00040 00082 00048.416.032.47.4211951.049.253.0
1970-1975133 00040 00093 00045.913.732.27.0510454.152.156.2
1975-1980150 00038 000112 00044.511.433.16.608157.755.659.9
1980-1985166 00036 000130 00042.
1985-1990180 00033 000147 00039.57.332.25.375365.463.267.7
1990-1995195 00033 000162 00037.16.330.84.924367.765.470.1
1995-2000198 00033 000165 00033.45.627.94.303569.867.572.3
2000-2005197 00035 000163 00030.05.324.83.723171.068.673.4
2005-2010201 00037 000164 00027.
* CBR = crude birth rate (per 1000); CDR = crude death rate (per 1000); NC = natural change (per 1000); IMR = infant mortality rate per 1000 births; TFR = total fertility rate (number of children per woman)

Births and deaths [5]

YearPopulation (x1000)Live birthsDeathsNatural increaseCrude birth rateCrude death rateRate of natural increaseTFR
2009223 48336 536186 947
2010223 34536 812186 533
2011224 40937 211187 198

Fertility and births

Total Fertility Rate (TFR) (Wanted Fertility Rate) and Crude Birth Rate (CBR): [6]

YearCBR (Total)TFR (Total)CBR (Urban)TFR (Urban)CBR (Rural)TFR (Rural)
2005-2006273,3 (2,3)242,6 (1,9)294,1 (2,8)
2011-201225,62,9 (2,2)24,22,5 (1,9)27,23,5 (2,6)

Ethnic groups

Ethnic groups in Honduras % [7]

   Mestizo (mixed Amerindian and European) (90%)
   Amerindians (7%)
   Blacks (2%)
   Whites (1%)

Religions: in Honduras % [7]

   Roman Catholic (97%)
   Protestant (3%)

Mestizos (European mixed with Amerindian) make up more than 90% of the population of Honduras. Amerindians are 6% of the population and AfroHondurans comprise 3%. As in other Latin American countries, the question of racial breakdown of a national population is contentious. Since the beginning of the 20th century at least, Honduras has publicly framed itself as a mestizo nation, ignoring and at times disparaging both the African component of the population and often also the surviving indigenous population that was still regarded as pure blood. [8] [9]

Because of social stigmas attached, many people denied having African ancestry, and after African descended Caribbean workers arrived in Honduras, an active campaign to denigrate all people of African descent, made persons of mixed race anxious to deny any African ancestry. Hence official statistics quite uniformly under-represent those people who have ancestry in favor of a "two race" solution. [8]


According to the 2001 census the Amerindian population in Honduras included 381,495 people (6.3% of the total population). [10] With the exception of the Lenca and the Ch'orti' they still keep their language.

Six different Amerindian groups were counted at the 2001 census:

  • the Lenca (279,507 in 2001;4.6% of the total population) living in the La Paz, Intibucá, and Lempira departments;
  • the Miskito (51,607 in 2001; 0.8%) living on the northeast coast along the border with Nicaragua.
  • the Ch'orti' (34,453 in 2001;0.6% of the total population), a Mayan group living in the northwest on the border with Guatemala;
  • the Tolupan (also called Jicaque, "Xicaque", or Tol; 9,617 in 2001; 0.2% of the total population), living in the reserve of the Montaña de la Flor and parts of the department of Yoro;
  • the Pech or Paya Indians (3,848 in 2001; 0.1% of the total population) living in a small area in the Olancho department;
  • the Sumo or Tawahka (2,463 in 2001; <0.1%)


The Afro-Honduran population consists of Garifuna and Creoles.

  • The Garifuna are descendants of Carib, Arawak, and West African people. This ethnic group has its origins in a group from St. Vincent islands in the Caribbean, who came in 1797. At the 2001 census 46,448 people were registered as Garifuna, 0.8% of the total population of Honduras. [10] The Garifuna speak an Arawakan language. They live along the entire Caribbean coastline of Honduras, and in the Bay Islands.
  • The number of Creoles was 12,370 (0.2%) in 2001.

Other ethnicities

Honduras hosts a significant Palestinian community (the vast majority of whom are Christian Arabs). [11] These Arab-Hondurans are sometimes called "Turcos", because they arrived in Honduras using Turkish travel documents, as their homeland was then under the control of the Ottoman Empire. The Palestinians arrived in the country in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, establishing themselves especially in the city of San Pedro Sula. [12]

The Italians in Honduras were 389 in 2014, nearly all of them concentrated in the capital area [13]

There is also a small Chinese community in Honduras. A lawyer of the Committee for the Defense of Human Rights in Honduras (CODEH) stated that the Chinese community in Honduras is rather small. Many of the Chinese are immigrants who arrived from China after the revolution and their descendants. [14]

See also

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Zambo ethnic group

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Afro-Latin American or Black Latin American refers to Latin Americans of significant African ancestry. The term may also refer to historical or cultural elements in Latin America thought to have emanated from this community.

Culture of Honduras

The wealth of cultural expression in Honduras owes its origins primarily to being a part of Latin America but also to the multi-ethnic nature of the country. The population comprises 85% Mestizo, 8% Caucasian, 6% Amerindian, and 1% Black. This influences all facets of the culture: customs, practices, ways of dressing, religion, rituals, codes of behavior and belief systems.

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Ethnic groups in Central America

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Hondurans people from Honduras or of Honduran descent

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  1. cruz, Eduardo. "Gobierno suma a 152 microempresarias en Pimienta, Cortés".
  2. "World Population Prospects: The 2017 Revision". (custom data acquired via website). United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. Retrieved 10 September 2017.
  3. 1 2 "Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat, World Population Prospects: The 2012 Revision".
  4. "CIA - The World Factbook". Retrieved 2014-11-02.
  5. 1 2 "United Nations Statistics Division - Demographic and Social Statistics".
  6. "MEASURE DHS: Demographic and Health Surveys".
  7. 1 2 "Central America and Caribbean :: HONDURAS". CIA The World Factbook.
  8. 1 2 Dario Euraque, "The Threat of Blackness to the Mestizo Nation: Race and Ethnicity in the Honduran Banana Economy, 1920s and 1930s," in Steve Striffler and Mark Moberg, eds. Banana Wars: Power, Production and History in the Americas (Duke University Press, 2003), pp. 229-49.
  9. Dario Euraque, "Antropólogos, archaeólogos, imperialismo y la mayanicación de Honduras, 1890-1940," Revista Historia 45 (2002): 73-103
  10. 1 2 "Atlas sociolingüístico de Pueblos Indígenas de América Latina Fichas nacionales" (PDF). UNICEF.
  11. The Arabs of Honduras. Larry Luxner. Saudi Aramco World.
  12. "Luxner - Articles".
  13. El Heraldo: Italianos en Honduras (in Spanish)
  14. . The UN Refugee Agency. "Honduras: Information on racism and treatment of ethnic Chinese."