Backpacking in Nicaragua, Alone

During this winter break, I'll be spending about 5 weeks backpacking in Nicaragua. Among Americans, and indeed citizens of developed countries around the globe, Central America is often viewed as a dangerous region filled with drugs and violence. Few travelers, if any, venture to Nicaragua, let alone into the rural areas and wilderness of the country, to discover what it has to offer. Armed with my trusty backpack, I will be travelling around this country, experiencing life in its vibrant cities, learning about its rural communities and taking a glimpse into its verdant hinterland.

Location

Nicaragua
  • Kai Herng Loh | February 6th, 2011
    It has been two weeks since I left Nicaragua, and I've finally found time to pen the final post in this series, an overall reflection of sorts. Traveling in Nicaragua was a real adventure for me. I spent a year before college backpacking around the...
  • Kai Herng Loh | January 25th, 2011
    As my trip approached its end it became clear that I needed a break from travelling, if you will, before returning to Brown. So I decided to spend 5 glorious days in Esteli, a cowboy town in a valley surrounded by high mountains dotted with coffee...
  • Kai Herng Loh | January 25th, 2011
    I'm glad I decided to go to Matagalpa. For its really a sweet little place, dotted with cafes, cheap eateries, supermarkets, parks, small departmental stores and interesting clothing shops, all relatively central, along two main streets that run...
  • Kai Herng Loh | January 20th, 2011
    First air-conditioned bus ride in Nicaragua. I was so comfortable I couldn't believe it was true - here I am, in the cool comforts of modern transport, breezing up north to Leon on a air-conditioned, comfy minibus, far removed from the hot chicken...
  • Kai Herng Loh | January 17th, 2011
    This pair of 2 small islands in the Caribbean has a really sweet name: the Corn Islands. Doesn't that make you want to go there right away? Well, it did, at least for me. On Saturday, at the last minute, just 1 hour before check-in time at the...
  • Kai Herng Loh | January 17th, 2011
    After 3 weeks in this country and too many things that have happened (dengue fever, missing the ferry to Ometepe, kayak capsizing, a series of boring, dusty small towns), my heart told me there was one place I needed to go to: Managua, the capital...
  • Kai Herng Loh | January 13th, 2011
    Time to bid the river ciao and head to the mountains. Lancha ride up the river back to San Carlos. As we departed the most boring town ever (check out my previous post), I saw the most sublime sunrise ever over the river. The landscape was painted...
  • Kai Herng Loh | January 11th, 2011
    San Juan de Nicaragua, population about 1,500, wins the unofficial title of most boring town in Nicaragua. There is nothing to do except wander its two short streets running through the center of town, with a handful of run-down storefronts and...
  • Kai Herng Loh | January 6th, 2011
    I am taking a deep breath as I write this. The past few days in the river town of El Castillo have been at the same time exhilarating, rejuvenating, exhausting, inspiring and utterly memorable. It reminded me of the beauty and fragility of life and...
  • Kai Herng Loh | January 6th, 2011
    After breakfast, I walked along quiet rural roads lined with farms baking under the hot sun, with gorgeous picture-perfect views of Volcan Concepcion. Found my way to Charco Verde. It was a peaceful, quiet pond with waters lapping against the shore...
  • Kai Herng Loh | December 30th, 2010
    Climbed Volcano Concepcion on Monday. Had a very greasy breakfast of an omelet which cost C$50 (US$2.30 or so). It was more like an extremely deep-fried and salty egg with toppings, dripping in oil. Concepcion was a good experience. I gave the guide...
  • Kai Herng Loh | December 30th, 2010
    Picture of the interior of a bus in Nicaragua. I apologize for the poor quality; it was shaky. After another day of rest on Saturday after being discharged from hospital, I was more than ready to get out and start doing some exploring. It came as a...
  • Kai Herng Loh | December 25th, 2010
    Picture of hospital food in Granada, Nicaragua. I was the only patient and they ordered the local version of KFC for me. What a bummer. After my last post vowing I will go out of the city and explore as much as I can, it seems I may not be able to...
  • Kai Herng Loh | December 22nd, 2010
    What a totally uneventful day. After classes in the morning, I chose not to go anywhere because I wanted to spend some time soaking in the sights and sounds of Granada. I guess I've already spent long enough here, because nothing much seemed exotic...
  • Kai Herng Loh | December 21st, 2010
    Swam naked in a 200m deep, 200 centuries old lake today. After a mind-boggling morning of Spanish regular and irregular verb conjugations, I needed some adventure and adrenaline. Thought about cycling out to the Peninsula de Asese, which according...
  • Kai Herng Loh | December 20th, 2010
    First full day in Granada, and I like what I see a lot. I'm once again reminded why I don't really like staying in hostels. Its cheap, social and everything, but I took a long time to fall asleep last night even though I was dead beat from the plane...
  • Kai Herng Loh | December 20th, 2010
    So I've arrived in Nicaragua. Its great to finally walk out into 80 degree temperatures and its wonderful to feel the humidity in the air, sticking to your skin (maybe I should explain - I'm from tropical Singapore). Three hours into arriving at...