Looking to relocate to Nicaragua? You’ll find the two most popular destinations for foreigners are the magnificent beaches of San Juan del Sur and the historic city of Granada. The two towns are only 90 minutes drive from one another, but in many aspects they are worlds apart.
San Juan del Sur is active…
To say that San Juan del Sur offers opportunities for an active lifestyle is an understatement. In the mornings it’s normal to see the long bay full of joggers, walkers and dog owners enjoying the refreshing cool morning air before heading to the market for fresh fruit and yogurt. And of course a world-class surf session is just a short drive away.
But San Juan del Sur is more than just beach and surf. It has a lot more to offer those looking to relocate. Many of the long-term ex-pat residents own their own business and are always on the move. The tourists keep coming, the place keeps evolving and this provides ample opportunities for creative spirits to find their niche. San Juan del Sur is a friendly place where the locals and long time ex-pats are happy to help newcomers get their footing and even provide ideas on the needs of the town.
The real estate market in San Juan del Sur has something to offer a variety of budgets. If you are relocating to live in your dream house overlooking the majestic Pacific Ocean with an infinity pool and nightly sunsets, San Juan has it. Or if it’s a one-bedroom apartment, fully furnished with cable, wifi and water that you are looking for, you can find that as well.
About the only time you will find San Juan del Sur sitting still is at sunset when most everyone takes the time to find a cold drink and watch the sun sink into the ocean and the sky turn a multitude of glorious colors.
Granada is busy…
Granada is not to be forgotten. A historic city – arguably the oldest continually inhabited town in the Americas – that sits on the banks of Lago Cocibolca (also known as Lake Nicaragua) in the shadow of the grand Volcan Mombacho. It offers a completely different lifestyle for those looking to relocate.
San Juan is active, but Granada is busy. The streets are teaming with people. Vendors and taxis are always right behind you and available. Everything you might want is here; either in the large market or the large grocery stores with North American standards.
Granada has a large ex-pat community, mostly made up of retirees looking for a lifestyle where they do not have to work as hard as they did in their previous lives. So for many residents the days consist of going for coffee and breakfast with other ex-pats before finding a local watering hole and enjoying the shade of a interior courtyard. The nightlife in Granada is extensive, especially on the Calzada, where you can find an array of restaurants and bars. It seems there is always a party going on somewhere.
Granada is the perfect location for those interested in renovating houses; the city being famous for its Spanish Colonial architecture. Many properties have been restored to their former glory, but there are always more looking for a little TLC or a complete make-over. The market ranges from large 5,000 square foot homes to smaller places that are just a shell of what came before. It all depends on your level of dedication.
There are a million factors to consider before relocating, more than possible to mention here, so do your research. Take the time to visit, consider booking a vacation rental, and think about the type of lifestyle you are looking for before jumping in. Living in a new country is much different then visiting one. Making sure your new destination fits your dream is well worth the time and expense.
If you have moved to Nicaragua, we’d love to hear from you. Sound off about your experiences in the comments below.