Beaches and Borders
Trip Start Jul 15, 2009
25Trip End Jul 15, 2010
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Heading south from there the things got hotter, dryer and the hard lives these poverty stricken people lived was noticeable. A hurricane that flooded a lot of the coast in 09 was still apparent as some bridges were gone. Kids, roadside, would hold up Iguanas they had caught, I guess to sell them as food or pets. One guy had an armadillo and some budgies, cruel in my books but they are living by the skin of their ass trying to get by, so, you do what you have to. We checked out the beach of Espino It felt little dodgy being there but still we for a swim in bath tub warm water paying a little girl to look after the car, and then headed onward to beach El Cuco finding a hotel that would let us camp on their grass. They seemed unfriendly and unhelpful. We went to the beach to watch the sun go down. For a couple of hundred meters there were wooden structures built into the sand probably for a weekend fish market
South Honduras is small and you should be able to get through both borders into Nicaragua in a day. We went through all the same border shit into Honduras, even bribing a police man to let us through as bob couldn’t find all his documents, only to be turned around at another check point for more paperwork. 4.5 hours later we were shooting for Nicaragua. Arriving at night and upon the customs officer demanding a 7 dollar bribe, I asked why and reluctantly gave it to him. These fees are not compulsory but they can get away with. There’s corruption at every border. He was pissed I slapped the money down and gave my passport the full check over, discovering that I didn’t have six months left on it. He decided to kick me back to Honduras, and was backed up by his boss. I tried everything except crying, but including a 40 dollar bribe but they weren’t having it, telling me to go to the capital to possibly pay a fine. My Irish passport was no good as I’d entered the CA4 countries (Guate, El Sal, Hon, Nica) with the expired passport. They were being arseholes! It was dark and we could only find an expensive hotel in a cruddy town. By now I was shitting bricks
It was nice to be back in the highlands, still very dry forest, nothing like what you’d expect for a tropical climate. The difference was noticeable after El Salvador and south Honduras, it felt more civilised and less threatening, lots of kids in school uniform that looked friendly and happy, big farms and the road even had road signs! It was a productive farming area and prosperous too. We visited the nice small town of Matagalpa one night and on to a German coffee resort the following day. All the buildings were kind of Bavarian looking and had loads of orchids and plants growing on the roofs. We were there for a hike from coffee farm to the Salva Negra forest. A steep trail up dry tropical forest which turned into lush cloud forest as you got to the summit. The howler monkeys were roaring as we went by.
Spending two nights in Nicaragua’s colonial town Granada was a must if in Nicaragua
Today we are leaving the town of San Juan Del Sur. It is a nice beach town, very popular jumping off point for the small beaches around. Bob met a lady, BJ, who had a pet spider monkey, she invited us into her home for a drink and so we could get to know Cindy the cheeky monkey. It liked to jump from one side of the room to the other and knocking shit off shelves was its hobby!
Today I have to try and leave Nicaragua on one passport and enter Costa Rica on my other. Fingers crossed I get through.