Nicaragua: San Juan Del Sur

Our day trip to the beach in Nicaragua was probably the highlight of our entire trip.

Ready for the beach!

Ready for the beach!

We passed lots of small family farms – growing everything from mangos to rice. The land was lush and green, with many different kinds of animals. We saw a lot of oxen, pigs, sheep, horses and dogs.

Small farms along the road

Small farms along the road

Most farms seemed to stake their animals out on the edge of the road to graze and move them as necessary.  It was a long drive to San Juan Del Sur, but very enjoyable, as we passed some of the most beautiful countryside.

When we arrived in the small beach town, we decided to walk around for a while before hitting the waves.

Walking around town

Walking around town

 It was still early and a little on the cool side.  Walking the streets brought back memories of beach towns from our past – Pacific Grove, Carmel-by-the-Sea, Monterey, Coronado Island. Lots of cute little surf shops as well as the occasional “organic clothing” shop.

San Juan Del Sur shops

San Juan Del Sur shops

While in search of a nice cup of joe, we came across a fantastic little smoothie shop.  This place was obviously owned by an American hippie.

El Gato Negro: A Coffee/Smoothie Shop

El Gato Negro: A Coffee/Smoothie Shop

Opening up the menu, we felt right at home as I read smoothie ingredients of coconut oil, bee pollen, dates and cacao powder.  We ordered the kids a smoothie and they downed it so quick that we decided to order another.

Sipping smoothies

Sipping smoothies

 At this point it was very warm out and the icy smoothies were just what we needed. After browsing the books and sipping our smoothies, we moved out back to discover a great little play area for the kids and an array of wildlife such as geese, ducks and chickens.

Playing in the sunshine

Playing in the sunshine

After our refreshing stop, we hunted down a couple of beach towels, some cheap beach toys and a hat.  I had gotten a pretty bad migraine from the heat the evening before, so I was trying my best to stay hydrated and out of the direct sun.

Walking to lunch

Walking to lunch

Eventually we were in possession of all the necessary elements for our afternoon at the beach.  We decided to have lunch at one of the restaurants on the sand.

The restaurant we ate lunch at

The restaurant we ate lunch at

 It was fun eating good ceviche while watching the waves roll in on the beach. Olivia loved playing in the wooden posts next to our table.

Hide and seek

Hide and seek

Cliff was getting sleepy!

Cliff was getting sleepy!

After lunch we made it out to the sand. The kids were overjoyed when they found the ocean water was actually warm!

Warm water!

Warm water!

Living in California for the past many years they haven’t had much chance to enjoy the water, since it’s so cold year round.  We all had a great time.

Come in the water, Mama!

Come in the water, Mama!

Olivia had fun building a sandcastle and Cliff just kept asking to go back to the water.

Heading for the waves

Heading for the waves

It was a great afternoon.

Loving the water

Loving the water

Once we were all feeling just a little pink, we decided to call it a day.  But before leaving San Juan Del Sur, we had one more thing to see.  From the beach we could see a huge statue of Jesus.

Cross on the hill

Statue on the hill

 We had to see it.  The drive up was short, but so very steep!  I wondered if our SUV would make it a couple times as the rubber on the tires searched for something to grip.  When we parked we had the steepest staircase I’ve ever seen ahead of us.  It took me a while to climb it with Cliff sleeping on my back, but it was well worth it.  The views were fantastic.

Statue of Jesus

Statue of Jesus

View of the bay

View of the bay

From this point we could see Costa Rica in the distance.

Costa Rica in the distance

Costa Rica in the distance

We grabbed a snapshot with our Texas A&M flag while we were there, too!

Whoop!

Whoop!

Nicaragua’s beauty was continuing to surprise us.  It was the kind of experience that makes you want to drop everything in your life and move.  Now.  Right now.

Beautiful Nicaragua!

Beautiful Nicaragua!

 We thoroughly enjoyed our day in the southern part of Nicaragua.  And we already had hopes to return again someday.

Beautiful Nicaragua

Nicaragua

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