Nicaragua Travel Guide

Nicaragua is one of the most exciting countries in Central America, and has something to offer for every type of traveler. Whether you’re looking for secluded beaches, outdoor adventures, beautiful hiking and nature, or colorful colonial cities, you can find it all here.

Considered the more affordable alternative to Costa Rica, its adventurous neighbor to the south, Nicaragua is quickly becoming one of the most popular destinations in Central America.

Nicaragua quick facts

  • Population: 6.2 million
  • Language: Spanish
  • Currency: Nicaraguan córdoba (NIO)
  • Capital city: Managua
  • Country size: 50,193 square miles 
  • High season: December through April

Top 10 things to do in Nicaragua

  1. Go volcano boarding down Cerro Negro
  2. Explore the remote and beautiful Corn Islands
  3. Admire the colorful city of Granada
  4. Learn how to surf at San Juan del Sur
  5. Kayak inside a volcano caldera at Laguna de Apoyo
  6. Go hiking in the pristine Miraflor Nature Preserve
  7. Eat gallo pinto (rice and beans), a national staple in Nicaragua
  8. Head to Jinotega to visit a Nicaraguan coffee farm
  9. Swim in a natural spring on the volcanic Ometepe Island
  10. Visit Masaya, one of the country’s most impressive active volcanoes 

Getting around

The most authentic way to get around Nicaragua is by “chicken buses,” which are old American school buses. Chicken buses are cheap, but they can get crowded and chaotic. Plan for extra time to arrive to your destination, because chicken buses are also very slow.

For more comfortable transportation that is still pretty affordable, you can take shared taxis or shuttle buses between major tourist destinations.

Where to stay

Little Corn Island:

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