This underrated Central American country is one of the best destinations to visit this winter if you're looking for amazing beaches, affordable prices, history and culture, and exciting activities.
Nicaragua is one of the lesser-visited countries in Central America, often eclipsed by more popular destinations like neighboring Costa Rica and other Central American countries like Guatemala and Panama.
However, Nicaragua is well worth a visit.
The only impression that many people have about Nicaragua is that it is poor and unsafe — and while it's true that Nicaragua has a high rate of poverty and it's not as safe as, say, Switzerland — there's so much more to this country than the negative stereotypes.
Here's why this stunning Central American country is perfect for a winter getaway:
1. Winter Is The Dry Season
Nicaragua has hot weather year-round, with two distinct seasons: rainy season and dry season.
As the name suggests, the rainy season brings the worst weather. From late April through mid-November, you can expect frequent rain and storms during the rainy season. It's also hotter and more humid, with average temperatures in the nineties.
However, the dry season lasts from mid-November through late April, making winter an ideal time to visit Nicaragua. Rain is much less frequent, and the weather is more pleasant (with average temperatures in the high eighties and slightly less humid.)
2. Cheaper Than Costa Rica
Costa Rica, which is Nicaragua's neighbor to the south, is the most popular destination in Central America. It's beautiful, it's extremely safe, it has a well-developed tourism infrastructure, and there are tons of things to do for every type of traveler.
The only issue? It's expensive.
Many travelers are shocked by the prices in Costa Rica, where hotels, transportation, activities, and food can all be very expensive, especially in top tourist destinations.
Compare that to Nicaragua, which is the cheapest country in Central America, and you'll be amazed by how affordable it is. You can easily spend under $50 a day traveling in Nicaragua, making it a budget traveler's paradise.
3. Winter Sun Destination
One of the top reasons to visit Nicaragua this winter is because of its beaches.
Nicaragua has great beaches on both the Pacific coast and the Caribbean coast.
The Pacific side is best known for its surfing beaches, like San Juan del Sur and Popoyo. The Pacific coast is also more touristy and developed.
Nicaragua's Caribbean coast is very rugged and undeveloped. The most popular place to visit is the Corn Islands, which are the definition of a tropical paradise.
4. More Than Just Beaches
Not a big beach bum? That's no problem at all because there is much more to Nicaragua than just beaches.
For fans of history, cities like Leon and Granada are must-visits in Nicaragua. Leon is known for its revolutionary history, while Granada is filled with beautiful colonial architecture.
Or if you're an adventure-seeker, you can hike Masaya Volcano or go volcano-boarding down Cerro Negro in Leon. Ometepe Island, in the middle of Lake Nicaragua, is another place known for its adventure activities and incredible biodiversity.
5. Easier To Get To Than Before
Getting to Nicaragua is now much easier than it was several years ago, with the return of nonstop flights from two major cities in Florida. You can fly nonstop on American Airlines from Miami to Nicaragua's capital Managua, as well as on Spirit Airlines from Fort Lauderdale to Miami.
Additionally, United Airlines operates a flight from Houston, Texas to Managua.
While Nicaragua does not have as many direct flights from the U.S. as other Central American destinations, it's also possible to fly to Liberia, Costa Rica, which has direct flights from more than 15 U.S. cities, and then make your way to Nicaragua.
This airport is less than 1.5 hours from the Nicaragua border, and there are tourist shuttles that will take you from Liberia to popular destinations in Nicaragua, like San Juan del Sur.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com
Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.