Make your mark on a local volcano, and surf down the black ashes and volcanic rubble, as you look out on the green mountains of the country side. Taste the rich local flavor on the streets next to the crusting churches. In due time the History of Leon will captivate you. Still able to see the effects of a battles once fought.
The Hostal Las Vacaciones was one of the best hostels I can say I’ve had the pleasure of staying at. They are awesome and getting the best prices on tours and are full of recommendations. Great location, wonderful staff, small terrace, and amazing lovely free breakfast for $5
Hostel El Jardin was also $5 and looks like just as good of a deal 🙂
And there is a hostel street that is the party area for backpackers, if you want to spend just a dollar or two more you can stay on this foreign hipster street.
Must do volcano tour
Tours every day to see sunset at the top of one of the volcanos,
Another one is more of a hike through the naturaleza
And my favorite of course is board down the black ashy most active and young volcano of cerro negro. Tour will include photos, video of you coming down, transport, and beer. If you pay 26 you will get banana and watermelon. If you pay 30 you’ll get a free (and actually very cute) t shirt and pizza. This is including the 5 dollar entrance fee as well. And the tour guides are English speaking, and super informative, and make it a super fun experience. I took full advantage of my camera shoot opportunity constantly asking for a photo here and a photo there 😀
Can I get a woot woot for the prices in Nicaragua!?
Politics and Historical Sites
Also the revolutionary museum should not be missed. It’s 150 to enter and they automatically give you a guide, and all guides are veterans of the revolution. I’m sure if you ask there are a couple of them that speak some English, but my guide was extremely animated, re enacting scenes from the wars that were fought in that very building. And it’s as if the war had just happened the day before, because the building was still covered in bullet holes and the same paint. Photos from the revolution were lays on the side of the wall and my guide would pick up the old frame one by one giving me very heartfelt explanations of every one, and insisting I read every word of the framed articles. The importance crucial. He, and from what I heard, the other guides were very clear from the very beginning that they love Americans, they love people from all over the world. But we’re very upset and obviously hurt by the American government. Ronald Reagan especially. And of course they share the same views as the rest of the world in regards to our current politics( cough cough valdamort) (yes I hate saying his name that much).
Museum of traditions and legends is an old jail from the revolution. And was turned into a museum by a very respected member of the community who me spent her life teaching and conserving the knowledge of Nicaraguan traditions and legends. She first hosted this museum in her home next was eventually granted the deserted jail.
100 Córdoba entrance fee, can go with guide (English) or not. There are written explanations of each exhibit in English and Spanish.
In the museums please tip your guides. They don’t make much and are extremely dedicated to passing on this knowledge the right way, and most have spent years working in the museums. I was extremely honored to have such humble and informative guide that knew everything about what they were showing us.
Go see the churches as well, crusty yet beautiful structures.
Transportation and people
Nicaraguans are the least pushy Latinos I have ever met. They don’t ask for tips, and they don’t ask for money, the whole time I only saw one lady begging on the street for money. And the prices on the street are not messed with.
Although becuase I have heard some gringos paying 10-20 dollars for taxi, and even short bicycle taxi rides…
I walked every where, getting very friendly directions and if it was too far and too dark for me to walk I’d squeeze my fat ass on a 5 Córdoba caminion truck. Very safe. Very friendly people, and everyone on that truck will make sure you get off at the right stop, and if you are lucky and someone is going the same direction as you, chances are they will tell you to follow them once getting off and lead you directly to your destination!
Not religious, but god bless every person I’ve met on the buses, and bus stations in Nicaragua.
Go see the churches as well, crusty yet beautiful structures.
Leon bus station & market experience
Tons of food at the market and plenty of heaps of cloths you can shift through for 10 cordobas, but the Nica T-shirts seemed to be at the fixed price of 80 Córdoba.
I got a plate of rice beans and a stew like beef with carrots and veggies. Then a home made thick tortilla on the side and some nice cold water to drink for 45 cordobas. This was the best deal I’ve gotten yet and it was incredibly delish. (I know your wondering, and yes I’ve had solid poops my entire time in Nicaragua)
5 córdoba fruit helados, blusa style from girls with ice chest
10 Córdoba leche con fruta. Bulsa style (try leche con semilla… it’s purple like color, and omfg it’s like horchata but dare I say it…better!)
Then a super heavy sweet corn bread for 10 córdobas, or 15 Córdoba if you want to double the size
Did I mention the giant plate of food I ate right before this, and still was ordering food because it all looks just too good. I barely managed to avoid buying elote (sweet corn) and a tamale halfway through the bus ride.
The food here just does not disappoint!
I truly believe Nicaragua is going to be a gastronomic capital of the world and am absolutely stunned more people aren’t talking about this.
Food and Experiences of a lifetime =)
Go to a bar within the markets, hang out with the locals.
Go to the markets and buy some second hand cloths or electronics. Yes you can buy new cloths and electronics at these markets too but if you are catching my drift.. that ain’t my style.
Bigger and denser and cheapest is the market close to the Managua bus terminal.
Buy any fruit that looks strange, if your too hesitant I’m about 80% sure the fruit vendor would be willing to let you sample what ever you want… just please make sure you are kind enough to buy something after if they are kind enough to give you free samples. People are too amazing in Nicaragua to take advantage of them.
And being that tourism is in its infancy stage in Nicaragua, it is important we give them a good impression. And maintain a generous relationship like what I’ve experienced here.
Eat the food. Like every type of food you see. Stuff your face. Gorge. I found it impossible to stop eating no matter how full I felt, my stomach was constantly making more room for my drooling tastebuds. So many option. So delish everything.
Vegetarian? No problem! Vendors are super accommodating, and will make sure you are fed and have options, even if that’s pointing you in the right direction away from their enchiladas and fried chicken lol