Updated April 3, 2004
Nicaragua beckons the tourist and has a wonderful new marina for cruisers.
Marina Puesta del Sol
The cruisers took special delight in setting up a bar on a bar--a sand bar, that is--during an extreme tidal range. Here you can see Maverick, Gemini and Jubilee huddled under the makeshift tent. Within an hour, the water had crept up to our ankles and our chairs started to sink into the mud. After a few Mimosas and croissants, however, we were very "tranquillo" about the whole episode until owner Robert sent his panga out to save us. And all this transpired before 10 in the morning!
Note: Click on any small "thumbnail" photos to see the large photo.
Here is the Gemini crew, a view of the marina, and the Maverick crew just as the tide started coming in. The marina has a hotel and nice bar/restaurant, all managed by owner Roberto and Maria Laura. Chinandego, the nearest town, was a tortuous, zig-zag drive over potholed roads but when you're out of fresh veggies, there is no alternative.
One more trek over the local road, then onto very nice highways to Grenada, a charming city much like Antigua in Guatemala, only less well-known and somewhat less sophisticated. Still, the plaza and architecture were delightful, as shown above.
The Church of St. Francis was beautifully redone--take a look at Diane & Barbara "Maverick" for scale.
The biggest thrill of the Granada trip was a boat ride on Lake Nicaragua. For $5 apiece, we took a 2-hour cruise to see oropendula bird nests and luxurious homes, each situated on its own little island. The homes range from US$50,000 to US$500,000--but what a piece of paradise! Again, this is all very tempting: buy an island with a luxury home, live in a tropical country with friendly people, listen to enchanting music and watch unique animals from your veranda. If all our friends and family would move here, we'd consider it. But until then, we're still cruisin' around.
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