Sunday, April 22, 2012

San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua

As I type this I am sitting in a hammock in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica; one of my new favorite places. I have already lost this blog post twice as I've never posted from an iPad before and they apparently won't save drafts. It also won't allow me to insert links or upload photos so I'm typing this up now and will post them all when I return home next week.

The first half of the vacation we are on was spent in Nicaragua. We chose Nicaragua for husband-face as it has some of the most consistent surf in the world and was rumored to be undeveloped and unspoilt (like Costa Rica 10 years ago). What we got was a bit different than expected. We flew into Liberia, Costa Rica and then hoofed it across the border into Nicaragua, it added a little more adventure to the trip. Taxis to the border from Liberia are expensive (they quoted us $140, likely because of our white skin) so we decided to do what the locals do and take the bus. We grabbed a bus from the airport to the bus depot in town (about 50 cents/person) then took another bus up to the Penas Blanca's border crossing (about $2.50/person, an hour and a half ride). We had watched this video about crossing the border and it definitely helped us know what to expect. The zone between countries is a very weird area, lot's of people just hanging out and sitting, we found that's what most people do in Nicaragua, sit and observe. There's a couple different checkpoints you have to go through but it's pretty unstructured, the exact opposite of what it would be in the US. We were lucky enough to be traveling on a holiday (Easter) so we didn't encounter any of the atrocious lines we read about. Once we got through we got a cab to San Juan Del Sur for $20, there are buses as well but we wanted to get there quicker. We stayed in San Juan Del Sur for the night at a little hotel called Hotel Colonial.  San Juan Del Sur is the southernmost town in Nicaragua and sits on an enclosed bay.  It gets a fair amount of tourists for Nicaragua and the beachfront is lined with restaurants and small hotels. It was just a quick stopover for us so we didn't do much, there wasn't a lot of appeal to us as there are much nicer beach areas in Nicaragua which is where we were headed.
The beach in San Juan Del Sur

Hotel Colonial triple room, simple but just what we needed for a nights rest
Nicaragua's beers, they all tasted pretty much the same
View from the hill above San Juan Del Sur
Church in the center of town
Isla de Ometepe, I wish we'd taken the time to visit

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