Oh Granada!

Trip Start Feb 07, 2012
Trip End Apr 24, 2012

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Where I stayed
Hotel Spa Granada

Flag of Nicaragua  ,
Sunday, February 19, 2012

After leaving Ometepe, we had a typical frantic travel day thru the streets of Nicaragua.  Starting in San Jorge, then Rivas - we tried (in vain) to catch a local bus.  No dice.  Needless to say we decided to blow the budget and take a taxi all the way to Granada. Luckily the taxi was not that bad and dropped us off right in the downtown Central Park area.  Granada is a gem - it is a "Colonial City" and is very old with a beautiful square, old churches and wonderful architecture.  Hungry we asked a local for a recommendation and ended up in an Irish pub!  I met a local willing to show me around to find a hotel.  We walked to 9 hotels and no rooms to be found!  There was a "Poetry Festival" in town - yes, that is right, a poetry festival in Nicaragua and all of the hotels were booked.

Luckily the last spot we checked had 1 room and was willing to add a few extra beds.  We blew the budget, but at least we had a place to stay.  The Hotel Spa Granada was one of the strangest hotels we had ever stayed in - anywhere!  It was very old with classic Spanish/Colonial architecture.  Our room had at least 30 foot high ceiling and crazy pink furniture..everywhere.  The hotel had amazing courtyards with very strange furniture.  It had a chocolate museum that served us an amazing breakfast in the morning.  It also had a great pool and the boys promptly met some friends and swam a ton.  We had a wonderful dinner and walked around the town with the poetry festival.  Granada was amazing.We are very excited to go back - we spend more than a week here later in our trip.

Determined to using the local public transportation ("chicken bus"), in the morning we had to take the "short walk" from the hotel to the bus station.  6 blocks thru a Sunday Nicaraguan market.  It got narrower and narrower, hotter and hotter.  Picture the market scene in any movie about India, and that is basically what we were navigating, carrying huge signs letting everyone know we were wealthy tourists, a.k.a lots of luggage!  Sawyer and Hunter were absolutely amazing navigating through this mob scene of people, rotting food, insane heat, makeshift storefronts, and honking taxis and cars everywhere.  We could not find the bus station, even asking some people (no English at all in these parts).  Finally we found it..  The 'bus" was a mini van with us crammed all over the place, our backpacks on our laps and tied to the roof of the bus.  1 hour later we were dropped off in Jinotepe and was able to enjoy the best pizza in Nicaragua. 

Next Stop - a week of Spanish school at La Mariposa.  Stay tuned!
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