8 Things That Shocked Me About Visiting Nicaragua For The First Time 

8 Things That Shocked Me About Visiting Nicaragua For The First Time 

Share The Article

Final Up to date

I’m simply over midway by a Central American journey, after beginning in Panama and dealing my method as much as Mexico, a visit which I’m finishing in 5 months whereas working full-time on-line as a digital nomad. 

Whereas each nation has been wonderful (I’m penning this from the completely beautiful Antiqua, Guatemala) one nation has stood out as an surprising spotlight.

I’m speaking about The Land of Lakes and Volcanoes itself, Nicaragua

Sunset in the streets of Ometepe Island with the Concepción volcano in the background, a bus in the front

Being American, most of all the pieces I had heard about Nicaragua earlier than planning this journey was not constructive, to say the least.

Let me wholeheartedly say that I’m so glad I didn’t take heed to the misguided warnings and that I used to be capable of spend a month traversing my method throughout this beautiful Central American gem. 

@nomads_nook Replying to @bradxlee._19 📍Nicaragua🇳🇮 is positioned in Central America and is understood for its breathtaking sunsets and tropical seashores🌴 – #nicaragua #travel #traveltiktok #travelinspo #nicaragua🇳🇮 #tiktoktravel #nicaraguatiktoks #nicaraguatiktok #paradise – 📽: @david.tejada.73 @Leo Chavez @Go to Nicaragua @Colleen ♬ Me Gustas Tu – Sped Up Version – Manu Chao

Nicaragua is actually not the only country in Central America that is still a bit undiscovered, and there are many in this region that it’s best to add to your journey plans this yr. 

Day by day and each new place in Nicaragua was a nice shock, however listed here are 8 issues that actually shocked me: 

The Security

Let’s begin with the one factor that involves thoughts if you first hear about touring in Nicaragua. Is it secure?

Whereas some media protection on the nation and its management doesn’t paint the nation in the most effective mild, as a traveler there for a month, I by no means skilled something that made me really feel unsafe. 

That being mentioned, I wouldn’t stroll round many locations after darkish, however I wouldn’t do that in most international locations immediately. Some research have proven that Nicaragua has a decrease crime charge than its far more well-liked neighbor of Costa Rica (one other nation I by no means felt unsafe in). 

Top 5 Travel Insurance Plans For 2023 Starting At $10 Per Week

Fisherment preparing to go fishing in Lake Managua, Nicaragua

Nicaragua is the second poorest nation within the Western Hemisphere, and touring from one location to the following, you will note this firsthand.

There’s loads of poverty right here, though from what I noticed, it was principally within the countryside, and the cities didn’t appear to have too dangerous of a homeless drawback. 

At present, Nicaragua has a stage 3 journey advisory from the U.S. State Division, principally attributable to restricted healthcare availability and poor legislation enforcement points.

As a traveler, should you keep in the principle vacationer areas resembling San Juan Del Sur, Granada, Ometepe Island, Leon, and the Corn Islands, try to be wonderful, though I might completely carry medical health insurance with you. 

Urban skyline of Granada city at sunset with its spanish colonial architecture, colorful cathedral and beautiful rooftops with the Nicaragua Lake in the background, Nicaragua, Central America

The Nature and Wildlife 

For a rustic that is called the land of lakes and volcanoes, it positive has… properly, loads of them. One exercise many do right here is volcano boarding down the spectacular Cerro Negro, simply reachable from Leon.

I opted for a extra laid-back expertise and headed to Laguna de Apoyo simply exterior Granada, the place you may chill and swim all day within the volcanic lagoon after which take a simple hike as much as the highest of Masaya Volcano to see the sundown and the effervescent lava (one of many solely locations on the planet you may see this!)

Masaya Volcano with visible lava pool and glowing exhaust fumes and gases in twilight, Masaya, Nicaragua, Central America.

Nicaragua has about 7% of the world’s biodiversity, and you will note lovely nature all over the place you flip. The birds, fish, mammals, reptiles, and all the pieces in between will shock you.

I skilled most of this on the wonderful Ometepe Island, the place I used to be awoken by howler monkeys, noticed spiders greater than my hand (in my bathe, no much less) and large iguanas simply chillin’ across the garden.

Apart from these creatures, the sheer quantity of colourful and interesting birds I noticed in Nicaragua actually gave Costa Rica a run for its cash. 

toucan in nicaragua

The Colours 

On a stroll within the little city of Moyogalpa one night, I commented on all of the paint shops that this small city had. To which my husband replied, “Have you ever seen the homes?!”

I needed to snort as a result of, sure, in fact there’s a paint retailer on each nook, as a result of each home on this nation is painted some neon shiny coloration, one after the following.

The entire metropolis of Granada, for instance, appears to be like prefer it might need been painted to be an Instagram backdrop, however nope. They’re simply colourful right here.

The colours of locations like this in Central America are one factor I’ll positively miss when this journey is finished. 

colorful house with van

The Seashores 

Let me get this out of the way in which proper now; I’m under no circumstances a surfer. I’m far more of a let’s seize a drink and watch the sundown type of traveler.

That being mentioned, I do recognize a very good seashore city with a browsing vibe. The southern city of San Juan Del Sur is precisely that and makes a simple begin for any journey by Nicaragua, because it’s simply over the border from Costa Rica.

_back view of a young girl sitting on a swing overlooking the volcano concenpcion on ometepe island, Nicaragua

With a Jesus statue that may remind you of a mini Rio De Janeiro and extra locations to eat and drink than you might probably get by, this seashore city is one to remain some time and chill.

On the coast alongside the Pacific you’ll discover different smaller cities, resembling Playa Mardras and Playa El Coco, each good choices for a really quiet vibe. Within the northern a part of Nicaragua’s Pacific coast, you’ll find one other well-liked seashore city of Las Penitas.

Throughout the nation, positioned about 50 miles into the Caribbean, you’ll discover the idyllic Corn Islands, and whereas I couldn’t embrace them on this journey attributable to time, they’re positively on my radar for an additional go to. 

Beach Swing at Little Corn Island

The Ease Of Journey 

Earlier than this journey, I had loads of reservations about touring round Central America. I used to be not sure if it might be simple to navigate the transportation and how one can attain all of the (ever-growing) variety of locations I needed to incorporate.

Nonetheless, the most effective factor about Central America is that getting from level A to level B could be as simple or as low-cost as you make it.

Hen busses join the whole sub-continent roughly and oftentimes price lower than a cup of espresso.

top of white church in leon nicargua

Subsequent up is shared shuttles, which I used 99% of the time, principally attributable to time restraints and being previous and cranky and never wanting to hold my (additionally ever-growing) backpack round.

The place any customer will probably wish to go in Nicaragua is properly linked by transportation, and shuttle busses typically price lower than $30 an individual, with door-to-door drop-off.

It’s price noting that personal drivers will also be fairly low-cost right here as properly, and I used them a number of instances after I couldn’t make shuttle instances attributable to work. One of the best tip is to get a card from one you want and preserve utilizing them. 

man standing outside bus

Undiscovered Gem 

One factor that actually stunned me in Nicaragua (and in El Salvador as properly) is the variety of vacationers it appears to obtain. Now, there have been vacationers all over the place we went; sure, this nation is just not a secret anymore, and folks do come right here.

@itsvivslifee Nicaragua – the land of lakes & volcanoes🌿🤍 #visitnicaragua #nicaraguatravel #travelnicaragua #nicaragua #volcano #traveltiktok #travelbucketlist #nicaraguatiktoks #visitcentralamerica #centralamerica ♬ video games – favsoundds

Nonetheless, what did shock me was the place these vacationers have been coming from. In my month of assembly individuals, I should have solely come throughout 4 different American vacationers. Many I met got here from Australia, some from Germany and France, and some Canadians. 

It appears to me that People would possibly nonetheless think about Nicaragua not attention-grabbing sufficient or too harmful to go to.

Each of which couldn’t be farther from the reality.

Additionally, with increasingly more flight options from the States, it couldn’t be simpler to succeed in this fascinating vacation spot.

Moreover, Nicaraguans may desperately use some extra vacationer {dollars} of their economic system, they usually deserve it.

Tourist tour for jesus christ statue in Nicaragua. Above view on San juan del sur

The Historical past  

One declare to fame of Nicaragua is that it gave the world one of many best names in Spanish literature, Ruben Dario. After spending his life as a diplomat, poet, and journalist, Daio is now a nationwide hero. 

If you wish to see some lovely preserved historic cities, Leon, Granada, and Ciudad Antigua have been the primary established by Spaniards after they reached the shores of Nicaragua.

Wander their historic facilities and take within the structure and tradition; simply keep in mind to look each methods for the quite a few horse and buggies that zip round these streets all hours of the day. 

Guadalupe Church at Granada, Nicaragua

The Worth-tag 

Going into this journey, I knew some counties in Central America can be cheaper than others. For instance, I used to be ready for Costa Rica and Panama to be extra dear than Nicaragua and El Salvador.

And but, simply how cheaply you might get by in Nicaragua nonetheless stunned me. 

Now, some places positively price greater than others. For instance, San Juan Del Sur didn’t appear all that low-cost to me, particularly when it got here to lodging.

Nonetheless, it’s potential to search out lodging on the otherworldly island of Ometepe for subsequent to nothing, and Granada additionally has many low-cost choices out there.

Apart from lodging, each day bills resembling transportation, sim playing cards, meals and drinks all additionally price lower than I anticipated. 

cliffs in sunset on coast of nicaragua

Traveler Alert: Don’t Forget Travel Insurance For Your Next Trip!

↓ Be part of Our Group ↓

The Travel Off Path Community FB group has all the most recent reopening information, conversations, and Q&A’s occurring each day! 


Enter your electronic mail tackle to subscribe to Journey Off Path’s newest breaking journey information, straight to your inbox.

This text initially appeared on TravelOffPath.com

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *