We decided that after three days of sweltering heat in Leon that we were in need of a beach. We made a beeline for Las Penitas and checked into a Bed and Breakfast that had been recommended via another backpackers blog. Sol y Mar is located right on the beach and is situated with an adorable back porch with swings and hammocks to lay in. Each night is $20 for a room that has a queen and twin bed, along with a private bathroom and includes breakfast in the morning which consisted of eggs, bread, coffee, and the famous pinto de gallo of Nicaragua. We stayed in this location only for a night due to the lack of wi-fi and the less than homey feel to it. We were rather disappointed by the customer service provided by the two women that worked the morning and evening; however we think that they were not the actual owners of the place. We read in someone else’ blog that they had a wonderful experience; however since it was during the off-season we think the owners were away and the usual management of the place was not up to par. Regardless, this place was beautiful and a great location to relax and be right on the waves.
The day that we arrived we spent swimming in the ocean and getting our asses handed to us by the waves. The waves were the highest and most aggressive that either of us have ever experienced. For lunch we walked the entire length of the town, which is really just a bunch of “comedors” and mini-tiendas where you can buy sodas and a few snacks. Most of the restaurants in Las Penitas you can get a fish dish from 120-300 cordobas (this is between $3-11 for a very large piece of fried fish with rice, beans, and a small salad). Its quite a deal!
The next day, we decided that we needed a bit of a change from the lazy bed and breakfast that we were staying at and instead made our way to the Surfing Turtle Lodge. From where we were located in Las Penitas, we had to take two buses to get to Chele’s Bar where we got a boat to the other side of the cove (cost was $1) and then a horse drawn carriage picked us up along with our bags and drove us to the lodge. The lodge is located on a little island near Las Penitas and is an absolute paradise. We spent three days in this location, each day in the morning looking at each other and instantly agreeing to stay one more day. The lodge is located right on the beach and its a quick one minute walk and your toes are in the waves. The lodge has hammocks all over the place, a volleyball court, yoga in the morning, volleyball competitions at 4pm everyday, slack-line, ping pong, and a fully stocked bar with daily cocktails. This place is a backpackers paradise! We paid $12 for each dorm bed, which up to this point was the most expensive bed we have paid for, but for all of the people we met at the lodge and the experiences we had it was all worth it.
We literally spent the three days at the lodge lounging around enjoying all of the amenities and reading as we listened to the waves of the beach. Since we stayed there at the beginning of November and it is technically still the rainy season, we were given the gift of amazing lightning shows each night. Thankfully, it only rained one night that we were there, however the other two nights it only rained deep in the ocean so we were still able to enjoy the views. Oh and before I sign off: if you stay in the upper dorm (where we stayed) you are in fact sleeping with bats. Yes, those noises that you hear at night are bats. Quick tip: make sure you secure yourself a bottom bunk, otherwise you might find yourself waking up covered in bat shit. No joke.