Explore Nicaragua: Ometepe

where to stay:

La Vie Verde-Organic Farm and B&B: La Via Verde is a beautiful organic farm on the verdant volcanic island of Ometepe. What is not to love about sitting on a deck at tree level, sipping fresh local coffee (or beer) while gazing out at the volcano and watching dozens of colorful butterflies flitting about in the treetops. Or hanging in a hammock on your private patio, listening to crickets while fireflies light the night? Or waking up to the sunrise and having someone serve you your choice of delicious, healthy local food including homemade bread, cheese and yogurt with the most luscious fruit from their farm? What truly takes this place to five stars and beyond is the owners. Eileen is the consummate hostess and will go above and beyond to make your stay as relaxing or active as you desire. She can arrange transportation, has a wealth of knowledge about island activities, and will answer any and all of your questions. Go There!  http://viaverde.blinkweb.com/ 

Finca del Sol: The Finca is run sustainably. They produce their own electricity with solar panels and grow their own organic food. Hot water and amazing hammocks which are perfect to relax. All the cabins are absolutely beautiful and have very comfortable beds. The Finca is very large and there are only three cabins so you feel like you have the place all to yourself. Cristiano and Sheri are wonderful hosts, offer terrific breakfast and organize day trips for you on request.  Wake up to the sound of the howler monkeys in the jungle every morning, the most magical alarm clark ever!  http://www.hotelfincadelsol.com/

where to grub: 

The Cornerhouse: The breakfast here is awesome. They have traditional Nicaraguan breakfast but if you are in need of a good old omelette with potatoes, this is the place to go. The coffee and the smoothies are also out of this world.  Close to both the center of Moyogalpa and the ferry is this really great place for lunch/breakfast. We had the eggs on toast (with baked potatoes) and the homemade granola which were both great. The staff speaks both English and Spanish and have quick service. 

Xalli Restaurant and Bar: The restaurant has some delicious options including lots of fresh fish from Lake Nicaragua.  Nice seating inside and out with fabulous views of the lake. The food is here is the ultimate combination of food that tastes amazing, is healthy, and reasonably priced.  Wonderful vegetarian options as well and health options at a reasonable price.  You'll be sure to come back more than once for a meal while staying on the island.  We recommend trying some of their hummus, it's out of this world!

Posted on July 26, 2015 .

Travel Lust Nicaragua: León

 

where to stay:

Hotel El Convento: Step back in history when you choose to stay at El Convento and experience a taste of the colonial era that still is present in the architecture of León.  Close to historic landmarks, museums, and gardens- this hotel is a perfect place for those of you.  And if you’re not looking to venture very far for dinner after a long day, the hotel’s restaurant is a sheer delight- offering choice beef cuts and vintage wines for days.  Enjoy the lush gardens and lovely rooms after a long day of strolling along the streets of León.  Room pricing begins at $92 USD/night.  http://www.elconventonicaragua.com/  

Hostal La Tortuga Booluda: For those backpackers looking for a more affordable place to put up their feet, this hostel is a friendly, relaxed choice.  Rooms are very clean and the showers offer great water pressure (something that may be hard to find in Central America).  The colorful courtyard has hammocks for napping and reading, but also is a friendly atmosphere to meet other travelers and share stories.  In the mornings the hostel provides dough and fruit to make your own pancakes, talk about delish!  http://www.tortugabooluda.com/

where to eat:

El Bodegon: Satisfy your senses when you dine at this Cuban restaurant.  Traveler’s favorite place for dinner, start with some mojitos and you’ll be well on your way to a fantastic experience.  Great Cuban music and the friendly staff of this small establishment will get you ready to come back for another meal while staying in León.  We recommend getting the frozen mojitos (a must), pescado (fish), and anything with pork in it! Located near Parque de las Poetas.

Libelula Coffee Shop: If you’re missing the taste of home and lattes, look no further than this cute little coffee shop.  It’s the perfect place to get a bit of work done- free WiFi and good quality coffee.  The baristas at Libelula will draw a cute little picture in your latte foam, just like your baristas back at home.  We suggest branching out from your usual black coffee and trying something new from their varied menu, like the blended caramel coffee or if you’re looking for a sweet dessert try crepe margarita.  Located on Calle Ruben Dario.  

 

Posted on July 20, 2015 .

Journey Through Nicaragua: San Juan del Sur

where to stay:

El Jardin: Enjoy your stay at this quite colorful, Mediterranean-style hostel during your time on the beaches of San Juan.  Escape from the wild partiers on the beaches at this tranquil getaway that overlooks the the valley and ocean.  You’ll be quite surprised at this “hostel” when the friendly owners welcome you in and take you to your clean, air-conditioned room.  The isolation and overlook will enchant, while the European selection of food will delight.  You can enjoy El Jardin by booking your stay now at http://www.eljardinhotel.com/en/hotel/index.htm.  Room prices begin at $68 USD/night.  

Buena Vista Surf Club: Turn off your smartphone and sneak away to this jungle eco-lodge on Playa Maderas in San Juan when you stay at the Buena Vista Surf Club.  It’s time to start really start your vacation when you get away from work and  technology at this eco-lodge when you stay in rustic cabanas, surf the waves at dawn, and finish up with a yoga class.  Choose this alternative accommodation while glamping on the beaches of San Juan and you will surely not be disappointed.  http://buenavistasurfclub.com/  

where to eat:

Día de los donuts: Satisfy your sweet tooth with homemade baked goods, made fresh daily by a kind couple from Arizona.  Pick your choice of donuts from Caramel Bacon to S’mores, made each morning by local women that Día de los donuts employs.  If sweets aren’t your thing for breakfast, they also serve a donut breakfast sandwich with bacon and eggs (even local coffee too!).  People are raving about the donuts at Día de los donuts, so be sure to stop on in while you’re in San Juan del Sur.  

El Menu: With a menu that changes daily, this restaurant will be sure to surprise you with its local and healthy choices that are utterly delicious.  Everyone will tell you to try the fresh-pressed juices, but literally everything on the menu will satisfy your hunger.  Plenty of options for vegetarians as well.  Try this unique spot for dinner and you will certainly be surprised by what you get.  The thoughtful planning of each days menu, as well as the execution of each dish, are absolutely dynamite.  

 

Posted on July 12, 2015 .

Wander through Nicaragua: Granada

where to stay:

La Islita Boutique Hotel: Located in the heart of Granada’s historic center and only steps away from some of the hottest restaurants and bars in the city.  Enjoy a delicious breakfast on the lovely rooftop terrace of this B&B or read a book in their tropical garden in the courtyard.  Reserve a room now during your stay in Granada at this relaxing retreat and you’ll have the perfect place to return to after a long day of exploring this colorful city.  Comfy beds and helpful hosts, you’ll be looking to return again to this B&B for your next trip to Granada! Room prices begin at $65USD/night.  http://www.laislita.com/

Hostel Oasis: While backpacking throughout Nicaragua be sure to book a stay at this true gem of a hostel that is both budget friendly and truly relaxing.  All the essentials for a backpacker- free WiFi, complimentary breakfast, clean, tight security, and friendly atmosphere.  Everything is in Spanish and English, accommodating to travelers from all over.  We recommend during the hot season to try and get a room with an A/C.  You can choose to stay in a dorm-style or private room, the choice is yours! Room prices begin at $9/night for a dorm room or $22/night for a private.  http://www.nicaraguahostel.com/

where to eat:

Tercer Ojo: Specializing in Asian cuisine (but taking you across at least three-quarters of the world with its expansive menu and wine list), the Third Eye is your go-to for tofu, Indian, sushi and Thai food. With a large bar, Tercer Ojo is also an enticing place for an afternoon beer while exploring the city.  Certainly on the more expensive side of restaurant choices in Granada, but your palette will not be disappointed.  We recommend trying the beef carpaccio or the Vietnam shrimp curry.

Pan de Vida Granada: The perfect place to grab a quick bite in the morning before setting out on your day's journey, Pan de Vida bakes all their goodies with love! Owned by a Canadian expat, this local bakery offers all sorts of global goodies- from chocolate chip banana bread, peanut butter cookies, or fresh daily bread.  Definitely the perfect place to start your day.  

 

 

Posted on July 5, 2015 .