Nicaragua is a small country of only about 6 million people. When you take into account that you cannot drive through the eastern 2/3 of the country, you realize that you can really SEE Nicaragua on a short trip. On our first visit, we drove from Leon to Chinandega to Asseradores in the northwest, to Matagalpa, Granada, and San Juan del Sur on $26 in gas! So when you’re planning your trip, make sure to take in some of the sights:
San Juan del Sur is a small tourist town in southwestern Nicaragua. With 22 nearby beaches, and 5 surfable beaches within 20-30 minutes, it’s become a hotspot for families, backpackers, surfers, and retirees. Great food can be had in town for half (or less) of a comparable “first world” meal, fresh seafood comes into the port daily, adventure seekers can try zip lines and horseback riding and volcano hikes, and the views are amazing from any number of locations. Take a boat trip, walk around the small town, journey to a nearby beach – which you just might have all to yourself.
El Pacifico Hotel is located in a residential neighborhood on the north side of the bay, a 15 min walk from town and a 15 min walk to the famous statue of Jesus overlooking San Juan Bay. We offer quiet and relaxation, a great vibe, cold drinks, hot breakfast, security, a crystal clear pool, and plenty of hammocks… Just the place to be *near* town without having to listen to it all night long!
High season here is December 26 through Easter, or Semana Santa Week. (Which is a craziness all its own!) Then it was pretty quiet… And then summer came. What a great time to visit San Juan del Sur! Why?
Everything is GREEN and beautiful!
From some time in November until some time in late April or May. It doesn’t rain. AT. ALL. So everything is brown and dry and dusty. Still pretty – the contrast of the blue green bay and the brown hills is quite lovely. But once the rain starts, everything turns green IMMEDIATELY, and starts to grow. The dust is washed away. It cools off. And prices are lower!
The surfing and fishing are great!
Fishing in the area begins to get good in May, and improves all summer. August is THE MONTH – mahi, wahoo, marlin, snapper… Great fish and a great time fishing. What more can you want? San Juan del Sur also gets over 300 days of great surf a year. Everyone can benefit – there are beaches that are great for beginners, and experienced surfers can catch swells that can reach 10′.
It’s not so hot!
Nicaragua is in the tropics, there’s no getting around it. After windy season, and before rainy season (mid-March through mid-May), it’s hot. Yes, the water is still cool, and low season rates during that time are some of the best of the year. But summer time has a perfect combination of breeze, the occasional rain (and very few days that are rained out), cooler nights, and sunshine.
It’s mid-season prices with high season activities!
Same hotels, same restaurants, same Sunday Fun Day, same Happy Hour Sunset on the Beach specials, same boat trips, same schedules… But 20% or more LESS than high season. Plus all the benefits above. Seriously… Have you made your reservation yet??
Semana Santa, or Holy Week, was NUTS. We had dozens of guests in a 10 day period, town was crazy, the beach was trashed… For some, it’s why they come to San Juan del Sur. For us, we were ecstatic when it was over! (We did learn some business things for holidays in the future, through, as they say, the School of Hard Knocks!)