The Bearded Monkey

Published: March 17th 2007
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So, after leaving San Juan del Sur (along the craziest road ever!) we had our first chicken bus experience. Wasn´t so bad there actually. It was just from Rivas to Granada which was only about a 3 hour ride and the bus wasn´t crowded at all.
We had heard about the hostel The Bearded Monkey a few times so thought we would give it a shot. The only problem was arriving in Granada mid day and not quite knowing where we were. Though we thought it would only be a few blocks walk. So, we asked for directions from a local and were on our way. Now, I have to mention that the Nicaraguan people are very polite and helpful. They would rather help you and give you wrong directions then admit they don´t know and give you no directions. So... off we went in the wrong direction for a while until we decided to ask some other whities the way. Every thing was good from then on. We arrived at the popular spot and got the last room for the night. Which wasn´t actually a room, but an open loft area. Well, that was fine for one night and they had a room for us the next day.
Sometimes you end up staying at a place longer than you expected to without really doing anything. That was what happened here. The hostal was a very comfortable place to be. Even though it was really busy, it didn´t ever really seem chaotic or overly noisy. There was free internet (huge bonus!), free movies every night, a bar, great food, the best book exchange, and a gorgeous courtyard with hammocks for relaxing in. They also kept a running tab for your food and drinks and room, so that made it really easy to be in one place and not worry about going to get your wallet all the time. The good food was a real bonus for me too, since my stomach isn´t doing so well here with the food being cooked in soooooo much oil. (uh, my stomach hurts now just thinking about it).
So, anyway..... Granada. It was just as beautiful as you would imagine a colonial town to be. Huge gorgeous churches everywhere. The homes were stunning as well. Beautiful architecture and colours, and the cute little balconies. Awwww. So, most days were spent just wandering around the town and chilling in the hammocks. It was really nice and relaxing.
Our last day we did a day trip to The Monkey Hut. It is another property owned by the same couple. It is on Laguna de Apoyo which is a 200m deep volcanic lake with crystal clear waters. Just another piece of paradise. We spent the day sun bathing, inner tubing, swimming, playing basketball, hammocking, and more sun bathing followed off with our first sun burn. Rod´s burn seemed so much worse than mine on the first day. His seemed to get better quickly and mine got worse. Hmm... go figure.
So, we had one last relaxing night in Granada and then off to start our marathon journey to Honduras at 3:00 am. Ouch!

PS: Running out of time at the moment. Will add more photos asap.

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