Peter and Sarah's Excellent Adventure travel blog

On the 19th we arrived in Granada, which turned out to be our t favorite big city we’ve been to. We walked around with our Aussie friends and decided to take a free tour of a local cigar factory where they make Mumbacho cigars. It was actually quite informative and we were showed the whole process of making a premium cigar. They had a lounge in the back with fancy tables and chairs set around a garden and pool so naturally we all had a Flor de Cana on the rocks with a cigar and pretended we were Columbian drug lords. Granada is an old colonial town with lots of cool buildings and was great for just walking around and checking things out, which we did a lot of. It also wasn’t as dirty as most cities in Central America so that was nice. Luckily for us, there was an international jazz fest taking place the last 2 nights we were there so there was good live jazz in the streets. It was surprisingly good, even though it was mostly American covers. We were in Granada for 3 nights, two of which were spent in the fanciest place we’ve stayed in so far. An older Irish couple told us about it and so we splurged on a $25/ night room which should’ve cost much much more.

On our way to Isla de Ometepe we stopped for a night in a treehouse hostel called Poste Rojo just because the flyers made it look pretty cool and we hadn’t stayed in any real jungle hostels yet. This place was definitely in the jungle with crazy insects and monkeys all around. There were a few different buildings built high up in the trees along with a couple decks and a cool suspension bridge connecting things. It was very unique, but we would’ve preferred to hear all the nature whereas the owner just wanted to blast music and give us free rum drinks(because I was living in Texas where he was from and because Sarah was hot) so that wasn’t so bad either.

We arrived in Ometepe on October 23rd which is truly a magical place. It’s an island in Lago de Nicaragua made up of two volcanoes rising from the water. Definitely one of the coolest islands we’ve both been on. We stayed the first night at a nice place right on the water where we just hung out and tried to figure out what we would do with our time on the island. The second night we moved to a really cool organic farm which was further up the volcano called El Zopilote. It was a big property with little paths connecting all the different areas of the farm. This place was a real hippie community where people stay for a while and work on the farm and where you’d be shot for putting something in the wrong recycling or trash bin. We did an hour of horseback riding on the beach one afternoon which was nice except that the horses were old and malnourished workhorses that didn’t seem too pleased to have us on them so we stopped a little early because we felt so bad for them. We will definitely check the condition of the horses before we go riding next time. After our night at the sustainable farm we parted ways with Bonnie and Hayden because they were moving at a faster pace than us(a common theme we’ve found). We moved to our third location on the island named Hacienda Merida where we stayed for 3 more nights. After camping our first two nights on the island we decided to stay in a real room because it was cheap and to get good rest for our upcoming adventures. This hostel was right on the water with a good pier for swimming and definitely our best sunsets of the whole trip. One day we rode bikes to the entrance of a waterfall and then hiked to the huge falls of San Ramon (180 meters). The waterfall was incredible…like something you see in a movie.

The highlight of Omtepe was climbing Volcan Maderas. At first we were skeptical because other people said it wasn’t worth it, and from our past experience climbing Volcan San Pedro in Guatemala. But it turned out to be one of the best hikes of the trip. It was definitely challenging, but not too strenuous. About two thirds up, the ecosystem changed where the trees were completely different because of the altitude. We were climbing through these crazy root systems of low growing trees and then we suddenly reached the top, where we had an amazing view of the other volcano and whole island.

Leaving Omtepe was hard, but we knew we needed to move on to our next destination, San Juan del Sur, a popular beach town with the surfer community. The next day we had one more lesson, and to our surprise, we didn’t actually need it! We both got up on the first time, and kinda looked like real surfers. We stayed with this little Italian man, who had the best dog on the planet, Napoli. We were in San Juan for three nights and enjoyed the many beaches. Although the So. Cal guys were complaining about the waves, Peter and I thought it was perfect for us beginners.

That is it for now. We are in Costa Rica now, in Nosara (in the Nicoya peninsula) where we are staying at Aaron’s house, which is absolutely incredible. Clean clothes, hot shower, and a bug free bed. We are in heaven.

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