Nicaragua as a travel destination is unfortunately, not as popular as its neighbour Costa Rica, but it is a fascinating destination with many advantages.
It has Central America’s largest variety of landscapes and natural diversity. The largest natural parks with unique fauna and flora are be found in Nicaragua, forming the region’s “green lung”. Besides active volcanoes, big lakes and rivers, tropical rain forest and scarcely populated landscapes that, with their horses, cattle and small artisanal gold mines, make one think of the “Wild West”, there are Caribbean islands with paradise beaches. The cities of León and Granada are of Spanish-colonial flair with historical cathedrals, colonial mansions and Spanish-style plazas. The combination of Spanish-colonial and Indian heritage is visible in architecture, traditions and daily life.
The prices are relatively low and everything needed for life is easily available. Nicaragua has been politically stable for more than 20 years and is one of the safest countries of Latin America.
Besides this, it is particularly the charm, the inviting character and hospitality of the Nicaraguans, who call themselves 'Nicas', that make this country so special and adorable.
Several airlines such as Condor in cooperation with Copa Airlines, fly from Europe to the capital, Managua, but usually with change of flights. Several low-cost airlines in the Caribbean such as Spirit Airlines fly to Managua, so you can also book a cheap flight to other Caribbean airports and then book a flight with Spirit to Managua.
Our main location for projects is the colonial city of Leon . Projects are also available throughout the country in rural areas in environmental protection and tourism development.
The language spoken is Spanish throughout the country, and English on the Caribbean Coast.
Philippa from Germany completed a 9-month internship in the kindergarten, "Los Ositos" in León, Nicaragua. In this video, she takes us through the city of León. We also meet the Spanish teacher Aura Cristina and our (former) supervisor, Ninoska.
León - Colonial City in Nicaragua
León (175,000 inhabitants) is an old Spanish colonial city, located at a distance of around 90 km from the capital Managua and the international airport. The attractive beaches of the Pacific coast are only 15 km away and are easily and inexpensively accessible by public bus.
The city has a special atmosphere which makes one think of its wealthy past. For a long time, the university city has been the country's intellectual hub. Particularly during the university terms, the city is full of young people and has a vivid student life. Tourism is not yet developed much, but is constantly growing.
Problems of the country that participants will face during their volunteering or internship placement are the lack of development, poverty, high unemployment and insufficient educational, medical and social systems, particularly in the rural areas. Many rural Nicas migrate to the cities or leave the country altogether. Around 20% of all Nicaraguans live outside their own country.
Coordinator in León
Our coordinator in León is Katherine from Nicaragua and Stefanie from Austria.
Recreational Activities in León
In León there are numerous bars and night clubs; almost every night one can find live music somewhere. There are cinemas and a theater. At the House of Culture one can take dance, music, drawing, ballet and taekwondo lessons. The Nicas love fitness; there is a gym at almost every street.
The beaches of the Pacific coast (Poneloya und Las Peñitas) are only 15-20 km away. It is possible to surf. Around León, there are ranches where you can do horseback riding. There are several small towns around León where you can visit colonial or Indian ruins and see local handcraft production sites. In a day trip, you can visit natural parks with crater lakes or mangrove lagoons where boat trips are possible, and where you can see many birds and alligators.
Throughout the year, there are many festivals which are often religious.
On a multi-day trip, you can see the less explored paradise, "Corn Island", on the English Caribbean coast of Nicaragua.
Theses Abroad are available in a variety of subject areas in Nicaragua, in which we can assist you because of our good connections with NGOs, government and private institutions. For the same reason, and because we are, at the same time logistical service providers (transport, accommodation, guides), we are the ideal partner for Group Study Tours and Special Interest Programs in Nicaragua.