Visual Adventure: San Juan del Sur in Nicaragua

Leah Griffin August 4, 2014 4

Often overshadowed by Costa Rica, its neighbour to the south, Nicaragua has loads to offer as a Central American destination: gorgeous colonial cities, massive volcanoes, genuine and welcoming people, and miles of glorious beach. Since the conclusion of a civil war that rocked the country in the late 1990s, Nicaragua is now one of the safest countries in Central America. Let’s head out on a visual exploration to San Juan del Sur along the country’s southern Pacific coast. I’ve been lucky enough to visit this beautiful area on and off for the past ten years and have seen the area blossom and grow. The beaches remain some of my favourites in the entire world, and San Juan del Sur itself is a great home base with good restaurants, great nightlife, and plenty of beaches and laid-back environments perfect for relaxing. Surfing is a major draw for many visitors due to consistent conditions and an annual average of 300+ days of offshore winds.

Restaurants built in traditional palapa-style on San Juan del Sur beach.

Restaurants built in traditional palapa-style on San Juan del Sur beach.

The main street along the beach in San Juan del Sur.

The main street along the beach in San Juan del Sur.

Delicious local fare.  Plantains, rice, beans, cabbage salad and various stewed or barbecued meats.

Delicious local fare. Plantains, rice, beans, cabbage salad and various stewed or barbecued meats.

A mural of Augusto César Sandino, a Nicaraguan revolutionary figure and national hero in San Juan del Sur.

A mural of Augusto César Sandino, a Nicaraguan revolutionary figure and national hero.

Playa Hermosa was used for the filming of "Survivor: Nicaragua." Most beaches outside of San Juan del Sur only have a handful of visitors at any given time and are mostly empty.

Playa Hermosa was used for the filming of “Survivor: Nicaragua.” Most beaches outside of San Juan del Sur only have a handful of visitors at any given time and are mostly empty.

cows in the road

A typical traffic jam on the road leading to Playa Hermosa.

howler monkey in the trees

Surfers aren’t the only creatures hanging out at the beach. Howler monkeys are a common sight around here.

Playa Maderas is the most popular surfing beach in the area. On clear days, you can see Costa Rica in the distance.

Playa Maderas is the most popular surfing beach in the area. On clear days, you can see Costa Rica in the distance.

friends jumping for the camera at sunset

Settle in with a Flor de Caña rum & coke for some of the most beautiful sunsets.


Getting There

G Adventures runs a number of departures to Nicaragua encompassing a wide range of departure dates and activities to cater for different tastes. We’re thrilled at the prospect of showing you this big blue planet of ours— check out our small group trips Central America here.

4 Comments »

  1. Ben August 5, 2014 at 1:48 am - Reply

    Amazing pictures!!! The Restaurants built in traditional palapa-style on San Juan del Sur beach looks awesome!

  2. Helen Dickerson August 10, 2014 at 2:34 am - Reply

    Wow! Such incredible place to visit. It is really a wonderful visual adventure for readers. Never been to Central America but will surely visit it soon.

  3. Carolyn August 23, 2014 at 11:50 pm - Reply

    Hello,

    I want to travel to Nicaragua December 20 – Jan 3 2015.

    I will be traveling with my 2 boys ages 13 and 16.My sister, her husband and 2 boys ages 11 and 14 may join us if they think it is a safe place to travel.

    We want to see all there is to see in Nicaragua …. the Carribbean beaches to Granada and the volcanos ….

    I have traveled in Guatemala and Honduras, and Mexico many times. I want to see Nicaragua instead of following the herd to Costa Rica :-)

    Please let me know how you can help me.

    Thanks and I look forward to hearing from you,

    Carolyn

  4. Leah Griffin August 26, 2014 at 11:55 am - Reply

    Hi Carolyn, you’re going to love Nicaragua! Get in touch with our Private Groups Dept — groups@gadventures.com or 1 866 925 1796 from North America.

    While we don’t currently offer custom itineraries in Nicaragua, they can look into offering you your own private “Essence of Nicaragua” tour. (https://www.gadventures.com/trips/essence-of-nicaragua/CNEN)

    You’ve mentioned the Caribbean — I’d strongly recommend adding on a few days on Little Corn Island. It’s a magical and super laidback place that’s worth the effort (1-2 flights + boat ride) required getting there.

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