Blogs from Isla de Ometepe, Southern Pacific Coast, Nicaragua, Central America Caribbean

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Nicaragua has a whole chain of volcanoes running through it, north to south, some currently or recently active. About a week ago I boarded a large ferry and giddy-upped across a gusty lake Nicaragua (wet luggage) to Ometepe island, created by 2 massive volcanoes, one at each end. In between the volcanoes lies a very productive, agricultural saddle of greens, corn, beans, yucca, bananas, various nuts, , and then going up the slopes of the volcanoes, there's more beans, coffee, cocoa, big tropical timber and finally, moist cloud forests cap the summits. Down on ths coast the food and cooking the Nicaraguan way is delicious. The island has been cultivated by humans for ovsr 3 millenia, and hence its also a bit of an archeological treasure trove. On one of the first days I hopped on ... read more
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On Wednesday, April 18, after coming back from the Treehouse Hostel, Rebecka and I went on our way to Isla de Ometepe, a big island on Lago Nicaragua. We wanted to take a taxi to the bus station, but in the end the taxi driver made us a quite good price to bring us directly to San Jorge, the place from where the ferry leaves. Since I was hangover and she was tired, we didn’t mind spending a bit more money to have a comfortable ride, for once. ^_^ We took the last ferry, at 5PM, to San José del Sur. The ferry took an eternity, about 1 1/2 hours, and we missed the last bus to Balgue, so we had to take a taxi. Those were super expensive (10$US p.P.), but there was un unofficial ... read more
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Mittwoch, den 18. April, nachdem wir vom Treehouse Hostel zurück waren, machten Rebecka und ich uns auf den Weg zur Isla de Ometepe, einer großen Insel im See Nicaragua. Wir wollten eigentlich nur ein Taxi zur Bushaltestelle nehmen, aber schlussendlich machte der Taxifahrer uns einen sehr guten Preis und wir sind mit ihm direkt nach San Jorge gefahren, der Ort von dem aus das Boot nach Ometepe fährt. Da ich total den Kater hatte und Rebecka müde war, störte es uns nicht, auch mal ein bisschen mehr für einen — für einmal — bequemen Transport auszugeben. ^_^ Wir nahmen das letzte Boot, um 17h, nach San José del Sur. Das Boot brauchte eine Ewigkeit, ungefähr 1 1/2 Stunden, und so verpassten wir den letzten Bus zu unserem Hostel nach Balgue und mussten uns ein Taxi nehmen. ... read more
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Hola Chicos, It has been a few weeks since the last blog, so just a short one with some activities I have done past few weeks. Spent the last few weekends seeing more of the island. Sherri and I rented bicycles one Saturday to go and see the San Ramon Waterfall. We caught the bus for a few stops to a bike rental, $5 per day. The waterfall is 50 metres high and situated partway up the Volcan Maderas, on the opposite side of the volcano from the farm. The road was paved for approx. 25% of the journey, the rest being rocky and rough! It took just under 2 hours to get to the waterfall entrance, a Biological station, but with a stop so probably an hour and a half, 14km. Oddly if you google ... read more
More steep paths!
Sherri walking up the start of the trail
Collecting palm leaves for a roof


Hola, chicos. Well into my last week at the Bona Fide project on Ometepe Island Nicaragua. I have mentioned and shown pictures of the farm but thought would try and give a better eplanation of the farm! As mentioned in earlier blogs the farm is 26 acres and was back in 2000 a cow field, reforested by planting 11,000 plus trees and 1,000 fruit trees in 2001. That owner then sold the farm due to illness and the current owners still run it as a Permaculture farm,Bona Fide, a non profit organisation. It has been designed and planted as an agroforestry farm, incorporating various species within each other. I am told over 76 number of plant species,. The farm runs an annual Permaculture Design Course, has intern programmes and also educational group visits. The main food ... read more
Big hands or small Bannanas!
Bits sunbathing
Last bit of the door


Ich sitze im (völlig überfüllten) Bus von San Jorge nach Managua und schreibe dir diese Zeilen - natürlich ohne Internet, vorerst einfach nur als Notiz... Ich liebe diese stundenlangen Reisen, „gefangen“ in Bus, Flugzeug, Zug oder auf Schiff. Viel Raum für Nichts, viel Zeit für freie Gedanken. Ich hab die größte Übelkeit der letzten Tage überwunden und finde mich emotional wieder in Dankbarkeit, was für ein tolles Wochenende auf Ometepe. Einer wahrlich magischen Insel - offenbar mit etwa 270 km² weltweit die größte vulkanische Insel in einem Süßwassersee, danke Wikipedia... In unserem "Dschungelcamp" El Zopilote war ein ganz besonderer Flair, ein freundschaftliches Zusammensein mit allen anderen Reisenden, manche bleiben mehrere Wochen sogar Monate lang hier. Wenn man die Umgebung betrachtet ist das nicht verwunderlich. Ich hab in einem Baumhaus geschlafen, lei... read more
Flying (oben) Basing (unten) - schon etwas fortgeschrittener
Unsere Gruppe
Wieder Zuhause - Arbeit ohne Lola geht nicht


Buenas chicos, Only been a week since the last blog but done a few things and lots of new pictures to share so another blog! Mentioned in my last blog the list of things I want to see and do while here on Ometepe, well this week managed to tick one off, the hardest one, hiking Volcan Concepción. Levis, who also works at the farm, was our qualified guide for the hike, he has done this hike over a hundred times and only a handful has he seen it cloudless. Unfortunately it had clouds the day we went, however the plus is that if hiking in full sun it must be a killer! Also dont realise how high you are and I am not great with heights! The hike is approx 6.5km up and down with ... read more
Up we go
Getting steeper
Another needed rest


Hola, so I have been enjoying my stay at Bona Fide Ometepe, over xmas and the New Year, been here 4 weeks already, 6 weeks left, it is going too quick! Been a few weeks since the last blog. So how is life on Bona Fide permaculture farm on Ometepe? Well things are great, plenty to do in the mornings and time to chill and wander about afternoons and weekends. Except the downer of when your new buddies leave on their travels or going home. One guy , Dylan my roomie,, who left a week ago surprised us all and came back for new years! Great to see him come back but sad to see him go again! He is back home now in Florida. All of the original people here when I arrived have gone ... read more
My new safe place
View from my new home
Concepcion


Hotel Hacienda Merida is one of the hostels along this trip which has made a great impression on me. They found a way to keep the village clean and educate their children. The idea is so simple and so genius. 1. Instead of bringing their non-organic trash to the landfill, they stuff plastic bottles with their trash until they have a solid bottle with compressed plastic. 2. They use these compressed plastic bottles as bricks to build walls of classrooms for an elementary school. 3. They convinced the village to collaborate. Now, everyone compresses its trash in plastic bottles instead of dumping it at the side of the road or burning it in their yard. Hacienda Merida is paying them 50ct (15 Cordoba) for 1 bottle. Every bottle becomes an EcoBrick. 4. A good part of ... read more
 a classroom wall build with EcoBricks
Number of bottles they collected every month.
3 month of bottles


We had heard many great things about Ometepe, an island in lake Nicaragua formed by two active volcanoes. With this in mind we set aside just under two weeks to see it before heading down to Costa Rica. On the ferry over to Ometepe we met some people going to little Morgan's hostel, and having been recommended it before too, we decided to join them. I wish we hadn't! On first impressions it was a cool laid back hostel, with a tree house so you can enjoy views of the lake above the canopy. We were staying in the base of the tree house so it felt like our own exclusive seating area. The dorms also looked cool, with built in beds with mosquito net doors. We later realised that these were spider city! The roof ... read more
Final sunset in Nicaragua




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