Re-upped for 90 days

As plans go, mine was simple: go a short ways into Costa Rica, spend a couple days loafing, then re-enter Nicaragua with a new 90 day tourist visa. I had 87 days on the one I got when I flew into Managua. Time to act. They say "variety is the spice of life." So I varied my routine to avoid taking a taxi in Managua to Huembes by going to Granada then Rivas. The bus to Rivas doesn't leave often and then stops at every blessed finca en route. Having missed the 15 cord bus to Penas Blancas, I went by taxi 'colectivo' (50 cords) to the border. The view of the volcanos across the lake and the array of windmills along the isthmus was eye candy. But tractor-trailer traffic jamming the road some 3 km before the frontier delayed us. Having paid Nica immigration $2 to leave, zero to enter CR, I arrived 5 minutes after the last public bus left (6:30PM). I tried paying my way onto tour buses, expresses to San Jose, & with any number of private vehicles, but Ticos are just too friggin' uptight. One lone taxi wanted $20 to go the 20 km to La Cruz and would not, said he "could not" go 'colectivo'. (Ticos are comfortable wrapped in rules.) Hell, my private room with bath there would cost $15. Fed up I exited CR (within 2 hours of being given a 3-month visa), no charge. I re-entered Nicaragua for $10 + 45 cords in fees and joined 2 Aussies & a Finn in a taxi going to San Jorge. They said they'd travelled all day from CR's Caribbean coast through San Jose because they were shocked at how expensive everything is. Welcome to Nicaragua!

Yes, I know I could have paid 'Immigracion' at MetroCentro (or send my passport from Leon) to extend my visa, but where's the adventure?

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Did CR immigration make you show $100 before entering their country? Or show a return bus ticket out of CR (which it sounds like you did not have)?

Nope. Neither.

Plus CR didn't ask me to fill out one of those little forms with all the same info they get off of swiping my passport.

Instead of zipping right home I decided to park it for a day of R&R in Granada. Glad I did. I caught the Big Underwear Social Tour show in the park. Run out of a 'magic' bus from Oregon (“Kesey’s son?” “Could be.”) filled with an international crew of clown-acrobats, artists all. It was as delightful to watch as it was scandalous to contemplate. Barbarini(?) ended the show bare-assed (in red jock-strap, red cowboy hat & boots) twirling & dancing with a lariat of fire there in the dark beside the Cathedral. Que barbaro! (Granada told them not to hang out their underwear there in central park this year. They complied.)

Left G-town with a Cathy’s breakfast in my belly and the raw conversation of a couple of ex-GIs (re-upping their CR visas there) spinning in my head. Tico-land is more welcoming of these double-dipper types (read: flush) who can’t speak Spanish well and seem to be on an eternal quest for poontang, whatever that is.

thanks for the update

The buses leave Granada for Rivas early, say 7:00 AM, every half hour until about 9:30 A.M.and then they thin out. It is a great ride...

On the bright side...,

You had the most honest reason that day as to why you were doing a quick turnaround!!

Both countries spend millions of dollars on tourism promotion each year but are only as good as their weakest link.

Adventure Plus The


You can read posts all day but until you do it yourself you can never be 100% sure of the experience.

You learned about that last bus leaving at 6:30 (and so did the rest of us).