Lonely Planet (www.lonelyplanet.com/nicaragua) Destination information, hotel bookings, traveller forum and more.
Vianica.com (www.vianica.com/traveling) Log on to this interactive map and click on your route to find Nicaraguan road conditions, travel-time estimates and more.
Intur (www.intur.gob.ni) The official government website is in English and Spanish, with lots of cheerful, vague information and an awesome photo gallery.
- Always go for a window seat in public transport, as the landscapes are absolutely breathtaking.
- Take some Spanish classes at the beginning of your trip. Nicaraguans are outgoing and friendly but few have foreign-language skills.
- Hire local guides wherever possible; they're cheap and you'll learn not only about the attraction you're visiting but also about the culture.
- Forget about keeping a tight schedule in Nicaragua. Allow extra days in your trip, especially if you're traveling by public transport.
- Take advantage of the hearty Nicaraguan-style breakfast served at most hotels (either complimentary or for a low price) – it will get you through a good part of the day.
- When in doubt about getting into a taxi, just ask your hostel or hotel to call you one – and be sure to discuss the price before getting in.
What to Take
- Sturdy walking shoes
- Comfortable sports sandals
- Insect repellent containing DEET
- An emergency supply of US dollars in small bills
- A two-pronged electrical adapter
- A lightweight raincoat capable of resisting tropical downpours
- Contact lens solution and other personal toiletries
What to Wear
The heat in Nicaragua can be oppressive, so you'll probably spend most of your time in lightweight T-shirts and shorts or cotton trousers. If you're heading to the northern highlands, you'll probably make use of a medium pullover for the cool evenings.
Note that in general, men in Nicaragua don't wear shorts unless practicing sports. Go for a jeans and short-sleeved shirt or polo shirt if you are going out with locals and be prepared to dress up for a night on the town in Granada or Managua.
On the beach women going topless is almost never acceptable and in rural areas bikinis may draw unwanted attention; consider swimming in shorts and a T-shirt like the locals.
- Make sure your passport is valid for at least six months
- Check latest visa requirements online
- Arrange travel insurance with medical evacuation cover
- Inform your debit/credit-card issuer that you are traveling to Central America
- Organize vaccinations against hepatitis A and typhoid, and consult your doctor about malaria prophylactics