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Nicaragua
Old 08-10-2012, 07:10 AM   #1
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Nicaragua

Although our first vacation choices would include either a mobile safari in Zambia, or a visit with Orangutans in Sumatra, with the current economic situation, (upon which our finances depend), we're thinking of somewhere closer to home for next winter.

Nicaragua.......perhaps grab a cheap flight, from Toronto or Buffalo maybe, rent a car, (or use local buses), and tool around on our own..........anybody done it, suggestions/recommendations?
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Old 08-10-2012, 01:42 PM   #2
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A friend of mine is also planning a trip to Nicaragua this year. He and his wife are going to visit the Corn Islands and San Juan del Sur. Maybe some other areas too.
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Old 08-10-2012, 03:22 PM   #3
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It's a wonderful country and I was fortunate to be able to visit on the company's dime many times during my coffee-buying days. As for what to see, it depends on your interests, obviously, but I'd suggest keeping time in Managua to a minimum and using Matagalpa as home base to begin exploring the mountains. Definitely book a few night's stay at La Selva Negra, a state-of-the-art ecological coffee farm that's also a lovely hotel with many km. of hiking trails.

I'd forget about the car at first unless you're a seasoned third-world driver. Nicaragua is an exceptionally poor country and road conditions and hazards may be a bit much for you otherwise. Chicken buses aren't the way to go either, except for the experience once on a short trip, but combis and hired private or shared mini-vans are good options.

I can't advise you about anything other than the highlands, but I'm sure between others here and guidebooks you'll do fine. Don't miss Flor de Caņa 18 year old rum (all of their stuff is great)!
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Old 08-10-2012, 03:42 PM   #4
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Thanks kevink.

I drove for 7+ years in Saudi Arabia; drove in Sri Lanka, Senegal, Mexico, etc, but that was some years ago, (I turn 70 next month), so your point is well taken.

Have made a note of La Selva Negra, thanks. Shared vehicles sound great, (I've gotten over the experience of being pulled out of one in Basra, Iraq, in 1963, at gunpoint by the military/police and detained for the day ), so with the age/road condition factors they might be the way to go.

Much appreciated.
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Old 08-11-2012, 02:08 PM   #5
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@ kevink: Picked up, courtesy our local library, the 2010 edition of Frommer's - La Selva Negra is noted, and we're going to investigate the boat trips down the Rio San Juan, (among other things).
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