Nicaragua - People and places

Milk in a bag/leche en bolsa

As some of you may know, in Nicaragua a lot of liquids come in bags. Here is a quart of milk in a convenient plastic bag...convenient until you open it and try to put it in the corner of the fridge. Many a milk spill there has been in our refrigerator, thus dynamizing the milk industry. A simple solution: a plastic bowl as a base.

Como saben, en Nicaraguan diferentes líquidos vienen empaquetados en bolsas. He aquí un litro de leche en esta bolsa plástica muy útil...útil hasta que la abres e intentas guardarla en la refri. En la nuestra se ha derramado varias de estas...así dando paso a una indústria láctea muy dinámica. La solución es sencilla: usen una taza o tazón plástico como base.

Thinking Of Visiting Nicaragua? Here are the things you should know

English: The main crater of Cerro Negro volcan...
English: The main crater of Cerro Negro volcano in Nicaragua. August 2011 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Thinking of visiting Nicaragua? Here are the things you should know.
Do you love adventures?
Would you love to see nature in a way like never before?
Does boarding on volcanoes, hiking volcanoes, surfing, scuba diving and fishing on island with clean, clear warm water sounds appealing to you?
…Then Nicaragua is your next vacation stop.
Years ago, if you’ve not visited Costa Rica, you would be considered a novice in the world of travelers. But for the past few years, Nicaragua is gradually getting more traction as a preferred tourist destination in Central America.
You can explore the beauty of the country without breaking the bank… that is a part of the reason why Nicaragua is a preferred destination for tourist as of late. The country gives you an upgraded (and cheaper) version of Costa Rica. With warm and accommodating citizens, Nicaragua is definitely a place to be. Just so you find yourself in Nicaragua, here are the things to do to make your experience of the country worthwhile.
Nicaragua has a number of volcanoes, rain forest jungles, and ancient cave. Hiking the volcanoes and walking through the forest is a popular activity for tourist.
For an awesome hiking experience, Lago de Nicaragua is your preferred destination, because of the presence of two volcanoes; Maderas and Concepcion.  Hiking volcanoes is not as easy it might sound, because it gets harder as you walk your way up the volcano.
Another favorite site for hiking is the Miraflores in Estelí. The Miraflores is a dense cloud forest with small rivers and clean waterfalls.
Don’t forget Mombacho…and its coffee plantations. It’s just a short trip from the oldest city in Central America.
English: Cathedral of León, Nicaragua, biggest...
English: Cathedral of León, Nicaragua, biggest Cathedral in Central America (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
A visit to another colonial city, Leon, would give you the opportunity to hike some of the most popular volcanoes in the country.  San Cristobal, Momotombo, Telica and Cerro Negro are about the right options to go hiking…and there in Cerro Negro you can board down the volcano through its black sand.
The cost of hiking the volcano ranges from $20-$40 (tour guide inclusive.)
If you’re into surfing and you find yourself in Nicaragua, a visit to San Juan del Sur is definitely a must. The most popular beaches are located in San Juan, with clean, clear and warm water, it’s almost impossible to resist the urge.
Luftaufnahme der Corn Islands
Luftaufnahme der Corn Islands (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Another popular island is the Corn islands; the Big and Little Corn. As the name implies, the Big Corn island is the big brother to Little Corn; they both however present a clean sunny space for relaxation and sun soaking.  Apoyo Lagoon is another popular lagoon near Managua; this lagoon is a good spot for relaxation and tourist also get to hike around the surrounding forest.
Enjoy The Culture:
Nicaraguans are warm and kind people. They are always ready to welcome and provide help in the best way they can. There are various festivals going on all through the year.  Citizens are always vibrant and happy with various colors and local music going around; visiting is a good way to see life and culture from other people’s perspective.
Since Spanish is the official language, you might want to learn a few Spanish phrases before your trip. It gives you the opportunity to communicate with the locals to some extent.
Visit Historic Sites:
City Of Granada: it’s the most visited place is Central America with great architecture with a touch of various colors, indicating the influence of Spanish culture
The wonderful and amazing Somoto Canon in Nica...
The wonderful and amazing Somoto Canon in Nicaragua. This massive and beautiful canon is a National Monument in Northern Nicaragua. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Fortress of the Immaculate Conception:  Located in Rio San Juan. Built to serve as a defense against pirate attacks on the city of Granada.
Somoto Canyon National Monument: Located in Madriz, the canyon is believed to be formed about 10 million years ago.

Leon Cathedral: Built in the late 16th century. The cathedral is said to have endured various attack, earthquake and bombings.
There are many ancient architectural pieces in the city of Leon; only a visit to the city can justify the beauty of this ancient town.
So what are you waiting for?
…how rusty is your Spanish?
Get your bag packed, buy a really nice book and head to Nicaragua to get soaked in the sun and enjoy the beauty of nature at its peak.

Miramar Churrasquería & Ceviche

I wanted to try out a new restaurant that had caught my attention a few weeks ago.  It's called Miramar Churrasquería & Ceviches. The waiter was...well...waiting for us as we approached the restaurant and was very attentive. He mentioned a few things that aren't on the menu (the menu is mostly about steak and seafood). For instance, they have that hamburger that you see in the third picture (it's not on the menu). He also told me about the courtesy cup of wine with any meat purchase.  So, I opted for the 8 oz. churrasco (4th picture). It was grilled perfectly, served with salad, french fries and pan-seared vegetables (carrots, broccoli and onions).  It was all really good.

The hamburger was also tasty, as I was told, constructed with caramelized onions, bacon, lettuce, tomato, onion, a 1/4 lb. (my estimate) all beef patty and served on artisan bread.

They also have a new cut of meat - ribeye steak (there in the last picture) that is also served with the same garnishes mentioned.  It was good too but not near as tasty as the churrasco with chimichurri (IMHO).

Sad to say I didn't try any of the desserts that include cheescake, tres leches and a few others - they even offered a courtesy cup of coffee with any dessert...but I did not give in to time.

What are prices like?  Really reasonable, actually.  Check prices here.  For that reason, on a scale of 1 to 10, I give Miramar an 8 - good quality and good value.

It's kind of an out of the way place until you find it - it's right on the Carretera a Masaya at Km. 9.9 (just beyond the stoplights for the entrance to the Hospital Metropolitana. There is a sign out front, right there with the Chinese food place. Miramar has plenty of secure parking out back.

Km 9.9 Carretera a Masaya