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UFC Fight Night: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

A UFC fight night out in Nicaragua is slightly different than a UFC fight night out in North America.  FREE admission and $7 bottle service (or Tona buckets) tonight at Howler Bar & Restaurant in San Juan del Sur!

UFC Fight Night:  San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

Semana Santa 2013: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

The place we now call home – San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua – just so happens to be one of the most popular places for Nicaraguan youth to party during Semana Santa. 

Rooms (with only cushions on the floor for sleeping) rent for up to $75 USD a night.  Vendors line the streets. There is no shortage of cheap beer, rum, knock off sunglasses or inflatable toys.

One of the local restaurants has set up a temporary Tip Top chicken franchise. Morning, noon and night we see Nicaraguan men passed out on the sidewalks and streets.  

Girls in booty shorts and bikini tops represent Heineken, Victoria Frost, Flor de Cana, Tona, Claro and Movistar.

As we sit in the Heineken tent and sip 30 cord ($1.21 USD) green frosties a group of special forces police – clad in black -march together in a troop of six. Rifles are strapped to their backs and they carry hand guns in holsters on their hips.

Convoys of Nicaraguan families have set up camp on the beach. The bay has become a place to bathe and use the toilet.  Avenida del Mar reeks of urine. Beach parties rage on until the wee hours of the morning. The techno beats can be heard all way to our house, which is more than three blocks away.

This is San Juan del Sur during Semana Santa! 

A Most Awesome Day of Sailing: San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

With the end of the dry season rapidly approaching the temperature is climbing. From experience we know that each day will feel hotter and more humid than the last, until the merciful rains come in May to cool us off. For the next month we’ll be staying close to the ocean or a pool.

One of our favorite ways to cool off and have a great time is to go sailing.

We recently got together with sixteen of our friends (new and old) and spent the day on a catamaran with Captain Zach from Nica Sail n Surf. We cruised out to a private beach north of town and enjoyed a day of swimming, snacking, drinking and relaxing. We had our own private party on the water.

$60 USD included our day of sailing, open bar complete with beer, rum, juice and soda, as well as Zach’s very own homemade ceviche, guacamole and salsa.

It was our friend Stephanie’s birthday and she said that the day couldn’t have been better. Even though her daughter Layla was the only kid on board she had a great time.

This was our first time sailing with our buddy Zach, but it certainly won’t be the last!

To learn more about Nica Sail n Surf or to book your very own catamaran adventure click here.

5 Nicaraguan Souvenirs You Probably Won’t Want to Buy


I spotted these rare and lovely pieces at one of the shops in Catarina. When we looked at the girl in the shop with questionable expressions on our faces she described them as “erotica”. These unique ceniceros (ashtrays) sell for just $6 USD.

Nicaraguan Souvenirs You Probably Won't Want to Buy

– How do you like them bananas?


I’m not really sure what use one would have for these rare and interesting baskets, but I am sure of one thing, at $60 USD they don’t come cheap!  

Nicaraguan Souvenirs You Probably Won't Want to Buy

– Yup, that’s right, these baskets are made from real chickens.


These masterpieces come in all sizes.  I had to stop myself from laughing out loud when the shop owner told me the price for a piece this size (16″ X 20″) was $50, but he’d be willing to sell it to me – on sale – for only $40 USD. 

Nicaraguan Souvenirs You Probably Won't Want to Buy

– This El Bano painting is one of the more modest pieces I’ve seen. Many actually show dirty toilet paper littering the ground.


Whether it be Cuba, Mexico or Nicaragua we’ve all seen multiple versions of the “stuffed” frog. To ensure In Nica Now remains a family friendly website I’ve chosen to share this G-rated photo, instead of the XXX one I have.  At $10 USD (including the Flor de Cana pocket rocket) I suppose you can’t really go wrong.

Nicaraguan Souvenirs You Probably Won't Want to Buy


This exquisite hand painted coffee mug is definitely one of kind and can be yours for only $8.33 USD.  Imagine the reaction you’d get from your coworkers when you walk into the coffee station with this mug in your hand. 

Nicaraguan Souvenirs You Probably Won't Want to Buy

– This might actually be the one (and only time) a “cup of boob” would be appropriate in the office. On second thought…maybe not!

So there you have it!  A sampling of some not so beautiful treasures that can be found here in Nicaragua.  If you’d like to check out some Nicaraguan souvenirs you probably will want to buy just click here.

El Macua: The National Drink of Nicaragua

El Macua – the national drink of Nicaragua

Everyone knows that Mexico has the Margarita and Cuba has the Mojito, but did you know that Nicaragua also has a signature drink?

It’s called the Macua.  It was created by a pediatrician from Granada and is named after a tropical bird native to Nicaragua.

Gord and I discovered this thirst quenching cocktail a couple of months ago when we moved to Granada.  It is a strong, fruity drink that is somewhat sweet and a bit tart. It is a beverage that we both quite enjoy – especially on Mojito Fridays!

Are you looking for a refreshing cocktail that will cool you in the summer heat?  You must try the Macua!

1 1/2 oz Flor de Cana
1 oz guava juice
1 oz orange juice
1/2 oz lemon juice
1/3 oz simple syrup

Fill 3/4 of a cocktail shaker with ice and add rum, guava juice, orange juice, lemon juice and simple syrup. Shake well for 30 seconds, serve in highball glass and decorate with an orange slice.

4-year Flor de Cana rum with natural fruit juices are recommended for optimal flavor and taste.

Granada Nightlife

Where can you go when you have a couple of friends over on a Saturday night and drinks around your pool just isn’t lively enough? You take a walk on down to Encuentros pool of course. Every Saturday Encuentros restaurant converts it’s pool area into a full blown night club with DJ and open bar. C$250 for the hombres and C$150 for the ladies gets you into the party and well lubricated for the festivities.

Club Encuentros

We were a little perplexed at the thought of what to wear. Will people be dressed up to go to a night club or are they prepped to actually go in the pool? Is the pool just there for atmosphere or is it part of the fiesta? Encuentros is a classy restaurant so it’s hard to imagine a total drunken debauchery with scantily clad people jumping in the pool.

Elisha and I paid for our wrist bands and walked in with our friends Paul and Danielle. The bar opens at 10:00 pm and it was busy when we arrived at 10:30. Paul is the single one in our group so we all scanned the room for potential candidates for him as we made our way to the back bar. The club looked upscale and most people were dressed similarly to what you would see in Canada.

The DJ was great and had the house music really pumping and it wasn’t long before we saw people starting to dance around the pool area. The crowd was about 50% Nica and 50% foreigners and everyone was mixing, mingling, dancing and drinking.

Poolside Antics

We scored a perfect high top table poolside to watch all of the action. A 20-year-old girl named Layla dropped by to tell Elisha she was looking to hook up with a tall, athletic, cool, good looking guy and wanted to know if she knew of any that were available. Unfortunately she was much too young for Paul to take a serious look at.

As the night went on the dance floor got more crowded and with copious quantities of Flor de Cana being poured at the bar the inevitable finally happened. A few people had bathing suits on under their clothes and they stripped down and jumped in. Others seeing the folly in their total lack of preparation either jumped in fully clothed or just dropped their clothes on the dance floor and took the plunge in their underwear.

Getting wet & wild!

We noticed that Layla was in the pool with a play friend. I’m not sure how much of her criteria was met but he was tall anyway.  They say if your expectations are low enough you will never be disappointed.

The bar stopped serving at about 1:30 am and that was our queue to move on. We were just about to leave our table when I felt something touch my leg. As I turned around to see what it was I saw Layla’s devilish grin. In a split second I felt the pull on the back of my shorts and there I was over tea kettle into the pool.

Swimming with my “friend” Layla

Luckily I was wearing shorts, a t-shirt and my 5 finger shoes with a bit of cash in my pocket. Nica money is plastic so no harm done.

I guess if you’re going to a pool party you might as well jump in with both feet. Literally and figuratively. Our night at Encuentros turned out to be highly entertaining – an evening that we will definitely repeat sometime in the near future.

His and Hers Treats

I guess you could say this is a continuation of a previous post “How much do things cost in Leon and surrounding area?“,  but today it is accompanied with a little story.

Elisha and I were roaming around the hot bustling city of Leon today checking out some rental homes to see what types of places are available. Who knows, Leon may be of the next places we choose to live?  It offers a nice mix of tourism and local commerce that seems to strike a balance that is rarely achieved. There certainly is a great energy that you can feel as soon as you step off the bus and into busy streets. Foot traffic is more prevalent, especially the six or so blocks surrounding the Central Cathedral.

We finished our time in Leon getting a big load of groceries. Elisha decided that she was well deserving of a little treat and of course I concurred. Happy wife, happy life.

Instead of spending 20 cordoba to ride the bus (45 minutes to an hour) to our home in Poneloya she wanted to hop in a cab for 200 cordoba (15 to 20 minutes). Elisha pitched this idea as we were getting ready to leave the grocery store and just like in a Seinfeld episode things have a way of evening out.

I looked to my left and didn’t I see a treat for me that would cost just 1 cord less than Elisha’s. There it was gleaming like a sacred jewel in the sun. A package deal for 2 litres of rum with a bonus of two pocket rockets for the “make me stand up and shout” price of 199 cordoba.

That’s right!  Do the math, sweet sister. In Canadian terms that’s about 82 ounces (or enough to get me Rum Dumb not twice, but thrice) of Nicaragua’s finest for $8.69!

A relationship built on sharing and equality never tasted so sweet. I suppose the new saying should be,

“Happy Wife, Baracho Husband”

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