Stunning sunsets, offshore wind all day, waves of every variety…..for these reasons and more, I keep returning to Nicaragua. Travel by panga to several world class waves within 30 minutes of each other! Wave savvy boat captains, assisted by local mates, will choose the best swell and tide for optimum surf sessions. For seven years, I have focused on the Popoyo region in southern Nicaragua. I am expanding my territory, adding wave venues and accommodations providers to my repertoire.
Nicaragua, known as “the land of lefts”, has many quality setups; combinations of offshore rock reef, headland, and rivermouth. Often, all three of these features create fabulous surf. Some breaks are hollow, others mellow. My favorite wave happens to be a right affectionately called “Beachies”, a fickle barrel that forms when swell funnels through an offshore slab, swings left toward a rivermouth, and then boomerangs right! Local surf guides school me on this wave.
Because of the extensive amount of surf time on offer in Nicaragua, a trip to the local hot springs becomes necessary at the end of the day. In the village of Las Salinas, immerse yourself in nature’s own geothermic pool. Ladies doing laundry at the hot springs usually finish their chores before dark, and the surfers relax and soak, rejuvenating sore muscles.
Within an hour’s travel, an island wonderland exists: Ometepe; two volcanoes joined together to form an island in Lake Nicaragua. The villagers thrive on tourism, selling pottery, paintings, and local food. Local guides will lead you as you hike up the mountainside.
Fishing often combines with surfing when traveling by boat. Local pangas charter near shore excursions, targeting sail fish, rooster fish, mahi, and others. Fresh fish can be a staple part of your diet, as well as local produce and the delicious red bean grown here.

Jo’s tips:
What to bring:
light weight clothing, cheap flip flops and a nice pair, hiking shoes if you want to hike, sunscreen, bug spray, a rash shirt to surf in, a couple pairs of baggies or a few bathing suits, a hat, sunglasses