Now that the weather is getting colder where you live, you’re probably dreaming of a tropical beach escape. With its natural beauty, Nicaragua’s clean, remote and tranquil beaches are sure to impress the most seasoned of travellers. The coastline actually stretches for a total of 566 miles and offers all kinds of settings. There are rustic, off the beaten path beaches, or those with luxury amenities just steps from golf courses, spas and hotels. Whatever type of traveller you are, you can find a great hotel close to these beaches, or enjoy them for an afternoon of surfing and relaxing.
Redonda Bay, Aqua Wellness Resort, Tola
This is a magical beach with giant rock formations surrounding a hidden, beautiful cove. The beach is sheltered enough to swim, paddleboard and relax. A private and secluded setting, Redonda Bay is one of the best beaches in the country. If you aren’t staying at Aqua, you can still dine or enjoy a cocktail in their beachside restaurant, in the afternoon or the evening. Listen to the howler monkeys roar as they climb through the forest canopy over the treehouse villas or enjoy lounging on the beach with a book. Planning a destination wedding? My sister got married here on the beach, a private and quiet setting for a casual, destination wedding in paradise.
Playa Escameca– 20km south of San Juan del Sur
The surf is strong enough here to attract the most seasoned of surfers! Since I am not one, I prefer to use the cliffs as a good base for my outdoor yoga practice.
Escameca is very remote, and it’s not comfortable for families looking for beachside amenities. It helps to bring your own water, snacks and towels. While there is a hotel close to the beach, be prepared for a steep climb up and down. This is a beautiful hike in the forest and gives you a glimpse of the vacation homes and villas being developed on the resort.
The beach is also home to a small population of Olive Ridley turtles who come here to nest. The staff at the Costa Dulce Hotel have protected the hatchery with net fencing, preventing tourists from walking into the nests. The Olive Ridley is endangered and is protected by the Nicaraguan government. They arrive en masse between July – December to lay their eggs, some estimating several hundreds of thousands of eggs are laid yearly. Playa La Flor, close to Escameca, is also one of the best beaches to view the nesting turtles.
The sound of the waves crashing on the beach is mesmerizing and you can sit for hours here without meeting another tourist. To get to Escameca, you will need to hire a 4×4 or a minivan, arranging transport with your host or hotel.
The ultimate off-the-grid eco, yoga-retreat and farm, Equilibrio provides a beautiful base to explore Playa Popoyo. Nearby Playa Popoyo is a pristine beach with some great beach surf and a handful of hotels where you can relax, have lunch or take a yoga class. The rock tide pools also provide a respite from the crashing surf break on this remote stretch of coastline and you can soak here in the sunshine. The town of Salinas is tiny, and it takes several hours to reach from Granada, but those travellers who have been to Nicaragua before will understand that everything worth seeing takes time!
A fishing village recently transformed into one of the country’s newest surfing hot spots, Playa Gigante is both gorgeous and unspoilt. We stayed in a home with a family – above their beach restaurant – for a more authentic local experience. This is also a wonderful place to experience fishing, either under the guidance of a local or to purchase the red snappers and sea bass which are unloaded from the fishing boats fresh daily. You can give the locals a hand pulling the boats back to shore, and watching the sales. What is so special about Nicaragua is that those who have fallen on hard times are always considered, and several fillets are set aside for them.
Recently, Gigante’s popularity has grown and there are more beachside restaurants, hotels, hostels and cyber cafes than before. My favorite beach of all time is Playa Amarillo, an even more secluded beach which lies on the other side of Gigante over a rocky outcrop. This beach has gentle breaks and is perfect for beginners with its soft thick sand and the absence of the experienced international wave hunters. You don’t feel so embarrassed falling off your board! One of the best hotels in the beach, popular with our guests is Machele’s Place.
A beach that’s not exactly hidden but it is unique, Santana is close to amenities that most vacationers want and need. Situated in front of Rancho Santana, one of the country’s best golf resorts, the beach offers strong surf breaks in front of 2,700 acres of rolling hills and a dramatic shoreline. Even if you don’t surf, you can enjoy the sunset or walk along the beach. For more on Rancho Santana, visit their website at https://ranchosantana.com.
Before or After the Beach
Stay at Casa Lucia Boutique Suites & Vacation Apartments in Granada, Nicaragua. We have plenty of economic options for budget travellers, or for those wishing a more luxurious experience with Honeymoon Suites and swimming pool views. Vacation apartments are equipped with full kitchens.
For more information on Nicaragua, Central America’s largest and most unique country visit:
World Travel Guide: https://www.worldtravelguide.net/guides/north-america/nicaragua/
Official Tourism Board Website – https://www.visitanicaragua.com