45km (28 miles) to Gracias; 110km (68 miles) to Copán
Santa Rosa is the commercial and administrative hub of western Honduras and, though it isn't overflowing with tourist sights, it makes a good base for exploring elsewhere in the department of Lempira. The town has long been known for growing high-quality tobacco, and this crop has played an important part in the town's history. The La Real Factoria del Tabaco was established here by the Spanish in 1765, and it led to considerable wealth for the city. Today the city still boasts a number of pretty, azulejo-covered colonial buildings that were built by the Spanish, and tobacco remains an important part of the economy.