What an idyllic getaway island, in someway world’s apart from the rest of Nicaragua. Of course you still have the rush of Nico’s at the ferry dock hassling you with tours and taxis, fritanga’s selling Gallo pinto y pollo but the atmosphere on the island is much more laid back and the pace of living is slower.
I stayed in Moyogalpa and ventured around on a bicycle and moped. An attraction not too far is Charco Verde home to howler monkeys and a butterfly house. After having been turned away first time being a solo female traveller (due to a recent incident involving a westerner being robbed whilst inside the parque) but lucky me a fellow traveller joined me on later occasion. The cost of the park entrance is $5 but I managed to pass for a guest at the local hotel and only payed $2 and personally I would not pay $5 for the attraction having seen a butterfly house before and only seeing the howler monkeys on the longer hiking route so I don’t think this is a must see attraction.
What was an utterly mesmerising tour I recommend was horseback riding up Volcan Concepion, it was worth every $ to gallop off the well trodden track climbing through dense forest to reach a beautiful view point that overlooked Ometepe, the surrounding lake, Granada and further mainland into the distance. When I write *dense forest* this is no exaggeration therefore experience with horse riding is in my view needed because no explanation is given by the tour guide and the 5 hour(approx) round trip has steep climbs, descents and plenty of branches to limbo under to avoid bumping your head. My Spanish speaking guide was terrific and even called for howler monkeys which was amazing to witness and for me, this was an incredible experience!
A fellow traveller who was on the island volunteering for a charity introduced me to a Nico family who invited us to dinner one evening and on another occasion we stopped by to say our farewells. Sharing typical nicaraguan food and drink with us and in return we shown them a natural remedy for a sore throat as their son was suffering with a cough, it was this cultural exchange that highlighted my time on Ometepe and left me feeling filled with happiness.
Ometepe was my final stop in Nicaragua before crossing the boarder into Costa Rica. I hope my blog posts have inspired other travellers to add Nicaragua to their bucket list it is a country with rough chicken buses, shitloads of Gallo pinto and charming towns waiting to be explored.