Planning on backpacking in Nicaragua? Solo female travel in Nicaragua is safe, and it’s one of my favorite destinations to visit in Central America. With affordable prices and world-class adventures, Nicaragua is a budget traveler’s dream destination. Whether you want to climb a volcano, visit colonial cities, or surf world-class waves – here are Nicaragua Solo Travel Tips and Bucket List Destinations.
Backpacking Nicaragua: Safety + Tips
Nicaragua is the fourth country I solo traveled to in Central America after Belize, Guatemala, and El Salvador. Although I never felt unsafe during my visit, you should always be aware of your surroundings.
To avoid overpaying, ask around before you hop on a bus or book a trip. It’s a good idea to have a ballpark idea of how much tours, taxis and bus fares really cost.
When backpacking in Nicaragua, never leave your stuff unattended, always be on alert and keep your phone and wallet tucked away. Always trust your gut, especially if you are traveling alone.
During my visit, I sprained my ankle while I was traveling in Granada. Fortunately, because I had Travel Insurance, I didn’t hesitate to see a doctor and make sure I didn’t break any bones. The doctor told me I had to stay off my foot for a few weeks if I wanted it to heal quickly. Since I needed to rest, I booked a fantastic ocean view hostel in San Juan Del Sur. I’m so grateful for the incredible staff who looked after me. I also felt fortunate that I met some amazing people on this trip who are now some of my closest friends. Thank you, Hannah, Michelle, and Halie, for looking after me. I owe you!
Solo Travel in Nicaragua
The great thing about traveling in Central America is that most of the travelers you meet are on the same backpacking route. Since you’re likely to meet people going to your same destinations, it’s super easy to find a travel buddy if you decide you don’t want to do this portion of the journey alone.
- 6.3 million people live in Nicaragua.
- The official currency is the Córdoba.
- Capital – Managua
- The rainy season is from May to October.
- The dry season is November to April.
- To enter Nicaragua, you have to pay $10, plus an extra $2 if you are crossing the border by land.
Gallo Pinto, a mix of rice and black beans, comes with almost every meal including breakfast and unlimited Flor de Cana happy hours exist in Nicaragua.
Things to do in Nicaragua
1. Laguna de Apoyo
Located near Granada and Masaya, this natural reserve crater lake is a great escape from the city. Paradiso Hostel offers day passes and shuttles for $14 that includes kayak rentals.
Where to stay
2. Travel to Granada, Nicaragua
Granada is a busy colonial city with stunning historical architecture. It’s a small fee to visit the bell tower inside Iglesia La Merced, which was built in 1534. You can also take a boat trip through the 365 islets of Lake Nicaragua.
Where to stay
3. Surf and Party in San Juan Del Sur
The fishing village of San Juan del Sur is located on the southwest coast of Nicaragua. There are several beaches for surfing easily accessible by taxi from here.
If staying in TreeCasa Resort is not in your budget, stop by for a day visit and hang out at the pool at this tree house lounge. Shuttles are available from San Juan del Sur.
San Juan Del Sur is also where you’ll find the “Sunday Funday” party. It’s an all-day party at hostels with a final stop at a beach bar.
Where to stay
4. Volcano Boarding in Leon
Leon is a colonial town, and will likely be your first stop in Nicaragua if you are traveling by land from El Salvador or Honduras. The food and accommodations here are very cheap!
Just outside of Leon, you can go volcano boarding down, Cerro Negro. Tours provide clothing, goggles, and boards, and you’ll hike up a volcano so you can slide down. Keep in mind; it can get very windy here, and holding the thin board can be a bit challenging. The $25 tour covers the National Park Entrance, gear, a drink, a tank top, and transportation there and back. It also includes a ride to and from Las Peñitas beach.
Where to stay
5. Relax at the beach at Las Peñitas
The waves can be a bit rough here, depending on the time of year, but it’s a nice place to enjoy the sunset. Come for the evening as part of the Volcano Boarding tour, or stay in one of the many beachfront accommodations.
Where to stay
6. Ometepe Island
Known for its twin volcanos, Ometepe is accessible by ferry. Rent a motorbike to explore the island or go horseback riding.
7. Corn Islands
Located off the Caribbean Coast of Nicaragua, you can access Little Corn and Big Corn Islands by plane or boat. Relax and enjoy crystal clear water that’s perfect for snorkeling or swimming.
Conclusion – Nicaragua Backpacking
We hope you found this backpacking Nicaragua travel guide helpful. If you have any questions about places to visit or things to do in Nicaragua, let us know in the comments. Whether you want to climb a volcano, dance, and party with other travelers, or surf world-class waves, Nicaragua is the place to be.
If you have any questions about Nicaragua solo travel, send me a message.
Backpacking Central America:
- Things To Do in Panama – Travel Guide
- Best Places to Visit in Guatemala – Travel Guide
- El Salvador Beaches, Waterfalls, and Adventures
- The Ultimate Guide to Planning a Trip to Costa Rica in 2020
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