1. If you enter Nicaragua by airplane, you will land on the international airport in Managua. If you, like many other travellers, want to exchange money, do NOT exchange it there. The exchange rates are way too high! There are many other money exchange services in Managua or every bank can exchange your money with reasonable rates.
2. Handmade and fresh cheese, tortillas, butter, bread, cookies, cakes, etc. can be bought in small shops (pulperias), cheese shops, local bakeries and so on and not necessarily in big supermarkets. The things from the small vendors are fresher, more delicious and cheaper. A good deal I would say!
3. Very often, mangos, avocados, bananas, lemons, etc. can be just picked from the trees or the ground below the trees.
4. In some areas it´s better to don´t walk at night. Especially not along dark and abandoned streets. Always walk in groups or at least with another person. Better is to always take a taxi at night.
5. Avoid traveling on Sundays if possible. Busses (except the high frequented routes, e.g. Granada – Masaya – Managua – Leon) or ferries don´t serve very regularly. Even locals often don´t know the timetables or if buses or ferries serve on that day at all. I´m talking about this, because I already made some interesting experiences 😉
6. If you fall sick, avoid the public hospitals. They are for free but the hygienic and service standards are just horrible. It´s always better to spend some bucks in private hospitals and doctors with good standards and expertise.
7. Avoid taxi drivers who want to force you to take their taxi and put a lot of pressure on you (e.g. in Managua). Tell them that you don´t need their service and look for a taxi driver on your own. Especially in Managua, taxi drivers ask tourists for a lot more than the usual price. Ask a bus driver or some local pedestrians for advice about the normal taxi price, so that you can bargain reasonably.
8. To speak some Spanish is a “must” if you want to travel comfortably in Nicaragua. Many people, except in touristic areas, don´t speak any English. If you don´t speak Spanish, try to learn at least some common words and sentences before you start your journey. That way you will definitely enjoy it more.
I hope, these tips are useful and inspiring for you If you think something is missing, that should definitely be added, write a comment below!
Thanks for reading!
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! Tip for a good book about Nicaragua: Nicaragua – Experiment Paradies