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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Idnug, Apr 10, 2012.
Thank you very much
The departure from Nicaragua made from Pochomil over San Rafael, then the Panamerican Highway to the border.
The jam at the counter for people-bordercrossing we can abbreviate using a tug and a few additional dollars to the border guards.
Our last stop is the place Samara, Costa Rica, on the Nicoya Peninsula. Since our last visit here a lot has changed ... the village is in the meantime extremely developed touristy and really "expensive" has become. I miss the natural flair of Central America ...
On the beaches of the tourist frequented places it's forbidden to drive a motorcycle on the beach. There is even police control.
In addition to the beach and sea Samara is still a nice starting point for day trips.
Um ... a "piece of France" we had as well
One possibility is the track towards Nosara, where there are many opportunities for further trip to the high altitude inland or seaside.
And then we still see some: monkeys.
Actually a whole pride of monkeys! By driving, you can discover sometimes on the run from the noise of the engines. One local resident has pointed us in passing on the "Mongo" in the grove behind the beach.
Other excursions are possible over Belén, then the track about Virginia to higher regions. There are a variety of tracks with many river crossings and trial passages. The journey lead us back towards Nosara, back to Samara.
Another way about Belén track to S. Miguel, Estrada about Isita and the round course back to Samara.
This meeting, in such a short distance, with a rather unhandy reptile is premiere for us.
Another nice round course is via Caimitalito, Guastomal, Vista al Mar, on the highest point of the Nicoya Peninsula, at 983 m. About Limonal it goes back to Samara ...
With signpost ;o)
Or ust a day at the beach
... before the return trip to San Jose, where we have to separate us from the motobikes, after around 3.200 kms on-road and about 1.350 kms off-road. At this point we would like to thank very much the Wild-Riders for the two motorcycles that were completely great. At Wildrider we're exchange some information about Nicaragua, particularly with the Nicaragua expert Morton.
... and again I will not shake the feeling that we are the "Wild Rider" - guys will see again ...
Also not feel that Nicaragua has remained somewhat guilty to us...
There follow some more summary information and impressions.
Continuation follow as soon as possible
Thanks for the wonderful photos of the backroads of Nicaragua and CR.
Really nice ride report....thank you for taking the time.
great ride report, we don't get to see enough local reports from central America. I especially like that the riding was all dirt trails.
I'm very pleased if you like to read it and hope there are some useful informations for your next "may be" trip )
Motorcycle Rental in Costa Rica / exit to Nicaragua
For proves leasers of motorbikes at “Wild Rider” (infos under http://www.wild-rider.com) the owners Thomas and Thorsten offered us to arrange the departure for the rented motorbikes to Nicaragua or Panama.
The costs for the departure of the motorbikes including the documents - all done by “Wild Rider” - are 60 US-$ per Motorbike, the caution money at departure from Costa Rica is 1200 US-$ instead of 700 US-$.
Flight to Costa Rica
With Condor from Frankfurt, about Domenicanische Republic, directly to San Jose / Costa Rica. Overnight at hotel Cacts, info at http://www.hotelcacts.com/pagina/menu gr.html
Overnight reservation was prompted by Wild Rider.
Accommodations in Nicaragua
Double room, shared bath / toilet. Very basic double room 18 US-$ per night, Towels. Guarded parking for 1 US-$ per motorcycle.
Simple double room, private bathroom (toilet without water, you had to always approach hauling in buckets extra) with fan, towels inclusive, 20 US-$ per night, (price must be negotiated). Parking in the yard.
Double room with private bath and fan 9 US-$ per night, towels inclusive. Motorcycles may park in the entrance hall.
Hostel Rancho Esperanza
Shared rooms 7 US-$ per night, per person. No towels or something else. Parking on the premises.
Pleasant double room with private bath, TV with fan 12 US-$ per night, including towels and super good coffee. Very friendly atmosphere. Parking in the courtyard.
Pleasant double room with private bath, TV with fan 12 US-$ per night, including towels. Very friendly and familiar atmosphere. Parking in the yard.
Hospedaje El Nuevo Milenio
Simple double room with private bath, TV with fan 12 US-$ per night, including towels. Very friendly and familiar atmosphere. Parking in the entrance hall.
Hotel Alta Mar
Pleasant double room with private bath, TV with fan 15 US-$ per night, including towels and super good coffee. Very friendly atmosphere.
Parking on the hotel terrain.
Exit and entry Costa Rica/Nicaragua
It is important that the formalities are for exit or entry into the country, handled correctly. Missing registration papers, insurance certificates and entries in the passport can lead to huge problems. For exit or entry Costa Rica, only the border crossings in Bena Blanca and San Carlos comes in question.
Procedure border station people leaving Costa Rica:
- Visit the office for people-leaving Costa Rica
- The people-leaving from Costa Rica is to registered in the passport by a stamp.
Procedure border station vehicle leaving Costa Rica:
- The office for vehicle leaving Costa Rica is to visit
- The registration papers and proof of insurance have to be submitted
- Submission of the passport driver
- Submission of the original "government letter" for vehicle leaving to Nicaragua
- The original "government letter" for vehicle leaving to Nicaragua is let to stamp
- Submission of the "letter of authorization" from Wild Rider for the vehicle departure to Nicaragua
- Submit copies of:
passport, "government letter" and the "authorization letter" by Wild Rider
Duration 1 hour.
Procedure border station people travel to Nicaragua:
- Visit the office for people-entry Nicaragua
- The people-entry to Nicaragua is to registered in the passport by a stamp.
Procedure border station vehicle-entry to Nicaragua:
- Obtain the authorization certificate for the vehicle disinfection
- Perform the vehicle disinfection for 3 US-$
- Completing an insurance for Nicaragua for 12 US-$
IMPORTANT: The original of this policy is to take with and must present on request.
- Visit office for vehicle-entry to Nicaragua
- Submission of
- Vehicle registration
- "Authorization letter" from Wild Rider for the vehicle-transfer and entry to Nicaragua
- The "government letter" that was stamped in Costa Rica, for vehicle-entry to Nicaragua
- On the basis of this documents another "document" is issued and delivered
IMPORTANT: This document must be presented to the exit from the border area to Nicaragua on the road carried with and presented on request be.
- Tugs at most US-$ 10 reward.
Outside help (a tug) is recommended for travel to Nicaragua. It is allowed to bring the required copies. Make lack copies and completion of the insurance for the vehicle without "tug" is somewhat difficult.
At exit from the border area to Nicaragua
- Presentation of the "document", which was issued by the office to exit vehicle
- Payment of U.S. $ 1 for "security check" of persons
Duration about 3 hours.
Procedure border station people leaving Nicaragua:
- Payment of US-$ 2 for "security check" of persons on entry to the border area to Costa Rica
- Visit the office for people leaving Nicaragua
- The people-exit from Nicaragua is to registered in the passport by a stamp
Procedure border station vehicle leaving Nicaragua:
- Visti the office for "vehicles"
- Submission of the registration papers and the insurance policy issued was in Nicaragua
- Let sign the insurance policy of Nicaragua
A tug is not really needed if you do, pay max. 10 US-$. Additional costs for abbreviation of persons entering: Payment to the border guard 20 US-$.
At exit from the border area to Costa Rica
- It's to give up the signed insurance policy of Nicaragua
Duration about 1 ½ hours.
Procedure border station people travel to Costa Rica:
- Visit the office for people travelling to Costa Rica
- The people-entry to Costa Rica is to registered in the passport by a stamp
- May be copy of the return air tickets
Procedure border station vehicle-entry to Costa Rica:
- Perform the vehicle disinfection (was free for us)
- Visit the office for vehicle-entry to Costa Rica
- Submission of
- Vehicle documents and proof of insurance
- "Authorization letter" of Wild Rider for vehicle transfer
- The stamped "government letter" for vehicle leaving Nicaragua
- Therefore a "document" is issued and delivered
IMPORTANT: This document must be submitted for the exit from the border area to Costa Rica.
Duration about 1 hour.
Flora in Nicaragua
Nicaragua has nowhere near the lush vegetation of Costa Rica. Outside the mountain areas the landscape is dominated by grazing land and plantations.
Roads and connections
The main highway in Nicaragua is the Panamericana Highway. To the east coast is it the Rama Highway. There are countless smaller roads, tracks and pathes in the various regions. A lot of them go into impassable regions and end as impasse. In the impassable regions the tracks are, especially for enduro and cross driver, an almost inexhaustible, partially very challenging terrain.
Road and traffic rules
Nicaragua also has its own rules on the road. Like in Costa Rica, here is the law of the "strongest." However, the traffic here behaves very "left-wing" to let the slow road users, on the right side of the road, allow enough space. Speed controls, there are probably not yet ... not yet. 80 kmh is the top speed generally.
Charm and quirks Nicaraguas
The infrastructure of Nicaragua has nowhere near the density of Costa Rica, also not Panama. Often only in larger towns can be found gas stations, banks and accommodations. In densely populated areas but are to find accommodation in quite different categories for each claim.
For longer trips to rural areas or to the east coast may be gasoline in jerrycan required. It is advantageous in an accommodation spending several nights in order from a starting point "cloverleaf", in several-day or half-day trips to explore the area. Outside the tourist centers, which are visited by international tourism, the conditions are indeed sometimes very easy, but for us considerably more attractive.
The existing "facilities" exist primarily for daily use and the, even "thin", native tourism. This applies to bars and restaurants as well as hotels and accommodations. We are always very friendly welcomed and welcomes as guests.
Eating and drinking
Bars and restaurants are everywhere. The regions near the coast offer a wide selection of fresh seafood. We have neglected every caution rule regarding food and drink. Also, fresh salads and the "Natural" drinks couldn't harm us.
The Nicas are more reluctant than the natives of Panama or Costa Rica. This type of restraint does not diminish the kindness, curiosity and willingness to help, if you are approached or even make contact with us. The people here often are characterized by business acumen or other interests. Nevertheless, we appreciate the incredible natural, honest and straightforward manner of the Nicas very.
I personally like the nature of the Nicas very ...
Us is not occurred. Crime is much lower than in Costa Rica or Panama. In rural areas, you have the feeling that there is no crime. We discover that we are increasingly careless and rare have a look on our things...
The official language is Spanish. Rarely can you meet people who speak English.
Smoking is also not in Nicaragua whole not so welcome. In enclosed buildings or restaurants and bars smoking is prohibited. Often smoking is also banned outdoors, in public places with a high volume of people. But with tourists generally is turned a blind eye ...
Nicaragua Colon is the native currency. 21 Colon=1 US $. US dollars are accepted in tourist areas for cash payments, but often with a poor exchange rate.
Nicaragua is priced well below of Panama. For lodging and simple meals it is around 30-40% lower than Panama. Price levels for accommodation is around 40-50% lower than in Costa Rica, but simple, budget accommodation can also be found in Costa Rica and Panama.
In the coastal regions and around the touristy regions, in some nature reserves and along the great lakes, the price level is generally higher than in the interior of the land and away from tourist areas.
We had German language "Nicaragua / country with a heart", ISBN 978-3-89841-294-0, English "Nicaragua / lonely planet", ISBN 978-1-74104-834-6 and the English "Nicaragua / MOON", ISBN 978-1-59880-084-5. Being the most useful information for the easy way to travel are included in the Moon. The "MOON" is our constant companion and reference guide in finding accommodation, as well as general and regional information. Not to mention, the reference book "Spanish for Nicaragua" ISBN 3-89416-320-8.
1:500 000, Mapas Na Torismo, ISBN 978-3-9811269-0-7.
This card is highly recommended because it is more accurate and places with lodging and gas stations are listed.
1:650 000, "travel know-how" in Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador ISBN 978-3-8317-7175-2
On our route are the "enduro" highlights:
- Coastal region north of Rivas.
- Highlands to Matagalpa.
- Highlands to Ocotal, also direction Honduras
- Mountainous region around Juigalpa
If our map only half way is right the track-braid in Nicaragua is nearly endless ... and the East Coast, we have not yet visited...
Nicaragua is an absolute recommendation. A paradise for enduro riders and an incredibly friendly and natural surroundings. In some regions, people are a bit cautious, also in the mountain regions. Their kindness is even more warmly if you are going close to them. Wish we could have stayed a little bit longer...
And then there was the living parasol, highland chopper, motorized vehicle family, warning triangle for breakdown van, the children, family vehicle with manual drive and the peaceful warning bikini ...
Thank you for the super trip report
For those who now are curious to explore Nicaragua.
You can now also rent bikes directly in Nicaragua or even book a guided tour.
And if you have the time and desire you can improve your Spanish skills as well.
We have guided motorcycle tours, motorcycle rental as well as a
Spanish language school in León / Nicaragua.
We also have rooms here.
Check it out on our website.
Since there is a lot of information about Nicaragua.
We hope to see you in León.
Saludos Jürgen and Eli
great ride report and congratulations for taking the road less traveled.