Monday, July 26, 2021

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Nicaragua

40 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Central America
January 20 to January 25, 2021

My 119th country visited on my journey beyond #lakbay100, 93rd solo backpacking trip, 9th country in North America and of course, usual budget do-it-yourself itinerary from arrival to departure. Nicaragua served also as the sixth country on my 2020-2021 America Pandemic Adventures Filipino Solo Trip, the new normal of traveling.

Nicaragua has coastlines on both the Caribbean Sea, in the east, and the North Pacific Ocean, in the west, and has Costa Rica to the southeast and Honduras to the northwest. Nicaragua is the largest country in Central America with an area of 130,373km² and contains the largest freshwater body in Central America, Lago de Nicaragua (Lake Nicaragua) or Cocibolca. Roughly one quarter of the nation's population lives in the Nicaraguan capital, making it the second largest city and metropolitan area in Central America.

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Nicaragua

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Nicaragua

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Nicaragua

timezone - UTC -0600H   capital - Managua    language - Spanish    currency - Cordoba (NIO)
1. Nicaragua is the second-poorest country in the Americas, next to only Haiti.
2. Nicaragua holds the largest lake in Central America.
3. Nicaragua is home to the oldest city in all of Central America.
4. Nicaragua has a wonderful equatorial location, of the 88 constellations that exist in the night sky, a whopping 86 of them can be seen vividly in Nicaragua.


Day 25: Jan. 20, 2021 Wed / Teguci. to Managua
1100H ETD Tegucigalpa UTC -0600H (2 hours late); Ticabus 30 USD
1500H ETA Guasaule border; 21 USD visa (180 NIO); Strict border control in Nicaragua (4 hrs queueing)
1900H ETD Guasaule border 
2230H ETA Managua; walk to hostel; dinner 88; Managua Backpackers Inn 5N 61 USD (1,367 NIO)
TOTAL: C88 + 82 USD + 30 USD

Day 26: Jan. 21, 2021 Thu / Leon
McDonald's breakfast 160; walk to Van Terminal
Money Exchange 50 USD = 1,725 NIO (34.5)
0900H ETD Managua; colectivo to Leon 71
1045H ETA Leon; walk to centro; church photo-ops; McDonald's lunch 209; magnet 40
1530H ETD Leon; colectivo to Managua 70; 1730H ETA Managua; dinner 194; Managua Backpackers Inn

Day 27: Jan. 22, 2021 Fri / San Jorge
0600H ETD Hostel; walk to Roberto Huembes Stn
0700H ETD Managua; breakfast 42; bus 85
0930H ETA San Jorge; walk to Port; lunch 82; Ferry schedule not fit for day trip back to City
1245H ETD Rivas; bus 85
1530H ETA Managua; haircut 90; snacks 130; Managua Backpackers Inn

Day 28: Jan. 23, 2021 Sat / Esteli
0500H ETD Metro Centro; bus #120 to Mayoreo 3
0530H ETA Mayoreo bus terminal; breakfast 45
0545H ETD Managua; bus 100
0815H ETA Esteli; snacks 54
0900H ETD Esteli; bus to San Nicholas 18
1000H ETA Rancho Don Ruis; walk 4km to Piedra
1100H ETA Piedra gate; walk 2km to Don Alberto 30; Esculturas en Piedra El Jalacate
1200H ETD Piedra; walk to Eco-Posada Tisey; Mirador Tisey Sendero
1540H ETD El Jalacate; bus 25
1630H ETA Esteli; snacks 48
1700H ETD Esteli; bus 80
2000H ETA Managua; taxi 100; dinner 179; Managua Backpackers Inn; dinner

Day 29: Jan. 24, 2021 Sun / Granada
0700H ETD Managua; colectivo 33
0800H ETA Granada; breakfast 132; Centro walk
1100H ETD Puerto del Granada 100; La Isletas de Granada; San Pablo Island lunch 65
1330H ETA Puerto del Granada; colectivo 33
1430H ETA Managua; bus #168 3; Managua Centro walk; snacks 195
Paseo Xolotlan 5; Puerto Salvador 5; taxi 80; Managua Backpackers Inn

Day 30: Jan. 25, 2021 Mon / Managua to San Jose
0900H McDonald's breakfast 177; lunch 178
1300H ETD Hostel; bus #105 to Managua airport 3
1400H ETA Managua Airport; snacks 245
1725H ETD Managua UTC -600H; flight AV6643
2220H ETA San Jose UTC -0600H

GRAND TOTAL: C3,272 + 82 USD + 30 USD

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Nicaragua

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Nicaragua

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Nicaragua


Land Border Immigration Issues: My longest stay in land border for 4 hours queueing due to Nicaragua's strict border control (not just for me but for CA residents also). On my case, Border Officer needed the photocopy of my US visa (eventhough Filipinos are visa-on-arrival), arrival/departure stamps of Guatemala and El Salvador in my passport. Unfortunately, no photocopying machine in the border, a random local was asked to go outside the border and have it photocopied. I paid L125 ($6) for this local. I finished my transaction for about more than two hours and seated inside the bus while waiting for others to complete their issues. 

Places Visited: Managua, Leon, San Jorge, Esteli, Granada

01. There's no centralized bus station in Managua. UCA Oeste Terminal is for Masaya, Granada and Leon while Roberto Huembe's Terminal is for San Jorge (Ometepe). Last colectivo departure is 1800H. 
Roberto Huembes Terminal is for San Jorge with earliest at 0550H, last colectivo back to Managua at 1610H. Mayoreo Terminal is for Matagalpa, Esteli. Earliest departure is 0545H, with express trips. 

02. Esculturas en Piedra El Jalacate in Esteli is an "off  the beaten path" side trip from Tisey - La Estanzuela Natural Reserve. Regular departure from Managua's Mayoreo Terminal going to Esteli, earliest for express bus is 0545H on C100 fare with almost 3 hours travel. At Esteli terminal, catch a 0900H bus to San Nicholas and ask to drop off at El Jalacate, fare cost C18 with 1.5 hours travel time. Entrance fee costs C30. 

03. For planned land border trip (Ticabus), only residents and locals are allowed to enter Costa Rica via bus trip. 

04. On land border arrival, Nicaragua requires negative PCR Test within 72 hours, government tourist registration via this link
and government approval via email upon submission of PCR Test result (important). 

05. On airport departure, my next destination (Costa Rica) doesn't require PCR Test, only health pass registration via this link and accredited travel insurance per this link I shortened my itinerary due to expensive travel insurance charge at $12 a day. 

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Nicaragua

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Nicaragua


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