Nicaragua is a beautiful country that features jungles, volcanoes, and adventure. If you need any convincing to visit Nicaragua, let this list sway you. Check out my Top 7 Reasons to Visit Nicaragua!
1. The Beaches
Because life’s a beach, right?! There are so many jaw dropping beaches up and down both coastlines that it would take you months and months to explore each one. A few of my favorites were Playa Maderas (with 8 foot waves!) and Playa Hermosa outside of San Juan Del Sur. Las Penitas in Leon was also great, and stay at the Surfing Turtle Lodge
2. Isle de Ometepe
This jungle island formed of two volcanoes was something straight out of a movie, and every minute was an adventure. Rent scooters or charter a car for the day to bring you around to each of the islands attractions, including a waterfall hike, a heated mineral pool with special healing qualities, and petroglyphs scattered about the island. If you’re able, do either the 4 or 8 hour hike up either of the volcanoes for amazing views. Don’t forget to drink fresh organic fruit smoothies at any number of locations around the island to cool off. If you visit Nicaragua and miss out on the Island, you’re doing it wrong! Check out this post for more about Ometepe!
3. Calle de Calzada
This tiny street has everything going on in the heart of Granada. Admittedly rather touristy and a tad more expensive than other places in Nicaragua, their happy hour deals on both food and drinks make things a little more reasonable. It’s a wonderfully vibrant mix of Spanish and tropical influences, and you can enjoy street performers and browse artisan crafts while enjoying the famous Flur de Cana rum the country is famous for.
4. Volcano Surfing
If you don’t volcano surf while you visit Nicaragua, you’re missing out! Hike up Volcan Cerro Negro with your board on your back and then you go flying down at speeds that can reach 60MPH. Don’t want to go that fast? No problem, just dig your heels in the ground a bit and feel the volcanic rocks between your toes. This was exhilarating!
5. Canyon de Somoto
By far, one of the more thrilling activities I have done was the tour of Canyon de Somoto. Going through a tour agency is the easiest. They’ll provide transfers to the difficult to get to river mouth. They’ll also provide a life jacket and a waterproof bag to carry belongings in such as cameras/phones. The canyon walls stretch far above you and guides let you know when/where to cliff jump in! Check out my whole post on the Somoto Canyon here
6. Laguna de Apoyo
If you have ever wanted to swim in a lake that is formed in the crater of a dormant volcano, here is your chance! This laguna was formed 20,000 years ago when a volcano imploded on itself. This body of water is still heated naturally and might have mineral healing qualities. Eat at one of the many restaurants that line its shores, and jump in the water after! Most restaurants will allow use of their docks after you eat. This is the perfect day trip from Granada or Masaya.
Things I learned after trying surfing for the first time: it’s really hard, and it hurts when you fall. Things I also learned after trying surfing for the first time: it is something magical to ride your first wave! IF I were to visit Nicaragua again, I would definitely spend my time surfing! Try it, and don’t give up after falling your first 50 or so times! There are lessons given at most major beaches, and surf resorts and hostels rent boards per day for very cheap. Don’t want to surf? Still head out to the surfer beaches and watch the locals shred.