Information Guide | FAQs

General Questions

Is Nicaragua safe?


Yes, Nicaragua is very safe. It is actually rated the 2nd safest country in Central America. The only crime in our region is occasional petty theft, but Hacienda Iguana Rancho Santana are gated communities with guards everywhere for added comfort so you have nothing to worry about.




Do I need to know Spanish?


It is very helpful if you know a little bit of Spanish. In the bigger towns some people may know a little English, but generally speaking, in the Tola region you will be getting by mainly with Spanish. Once here our trilingual management (English/Spanish/Russian) can help you with anything you would need.




What kind of medical facilities are there?


All public and private hospitals and medical facilities in Nicaragua will treat foreign visitors in case of emergency, accident, sudden illness or a chronic disease. Most often you have to pay cash for treatment however some private hospitals accept payment by credit card. While medical facilities are rather limited outside of Managua, there are well equipped private facilities in the capital. If you need medical attention while in Nicaragua, the Metropolitano Vivian Pellas Hospital in Managua is a good choice - +505.2255.6900 For minor colds, bumps, scratches, or stitches, the US funded private in Farmacia Iguana has a doctor on site +505.8282.4817 or in Roberto Clemente Clinic (north of entrance to Rancho Santana - +505.8887.7413) - it takes about 40 min for the ambulance to arrive to Iguana, located about 15 minutes north outside of Hacienda Iguana is a good choice as well.




Do I need to exchange my USD to Cordobas?


No, everywhere in Nicaragua accepts USD although you may lose a little money when buying things due to discrepancies in exchange rates so sometimes it is good to pay in Cordobas. Many people don’t accept ripped bills so make sure yours are in good condition and bring with you small bills if possible. Local ATMs dispense both currencies - USD and Cordoba.




Can I use credit cards in the area?


Yes some places do accept credit cards but most do not. So please bring an ample amount of cash.




Are there any ATMs in the area?


- Riviera Plaza - south of Hacienda Iguana - ECI (Costa Esmeralda Airport) - Hacienda Iguana - Its located in the commercial center of Iguana – across from Don Eloy’s Restaurant. If ATM is out of USD, always check Cordoba if you need cash.




What’s the local sales tax?


There is normally a 15% tax added to sale of goods and services. A 10% service fee is usually added to the bill at most restaurants. In essence this is the tip. If not included, it will be specified on the menu.




What is the weather like?


The temperature here stays pretty constant year round, only fluctuating between around 85-93 degrees Fahrenheit. Rainy season is from the beginning of May until the beginning of November. May through September there is intermittent rain and the majority of the rain is at night. October is considered the super rainy month, it can rain all day and night for weeks and it wouldn’t be unusual to get “stuck” here as the rivers are often too high to cross at these times. November and December are still green and comfortable as the wind starts to pick up and it is dry from January through April. April is generally the hottest month. What is the water temp? Most of the year the water is comfortable (around 80 F), sometimes even warmer, but January through March the water can get a bit chilly due to upwelling caused by the constant offshore winds. This time of year I recommend bringing a 1-2mm wetsuit top or short wetsuit.




What airport should I fly into?


Emerald Coast International Airport (Airport code – ECI) is literally only a 1 minute drive from Hacienda Iguana’s entrance and 10 minute drive from the properties in Hacienda Iguana and Rancho Santana. You can also fly into Managua airport (Airport code- MGA) and drive 2.5 hours to Hacienda Iguana / 3h to Rancho Santana. Liberia, Costa Rica - and we will arrange your taxi services from Liberia to Hacienda Iguana or Rancho Santana, including help crossing the boarder. Driving time from Liberia to HI or RS is about 3 hours plus border crossing.




Can you arrange Airport transportation for me?


You bet! We can arrange a private sedan for $100 for up to 4 people. At $160 we have a new microbus that can carry up to 12. Please just let us know your number of people, preferred type of transportation, exact arrival time, airline and flight number and we can arrange your transportation for you. Your ride does include a stop at the grocery store as well. We can also set up transportation to and from Liberia Costa Rica Airport also.




Do I need a 4X4 vehicle?


During rainy season (May-October) we do advise that you rent a 4X4. Depending on the amount of rain the rivers fill quite a bit and the road this time of year are generally muddy and bumpy. In dry season you do not need 4X4 but keep in mind that the road is dirt and can be bumpy so a larger car with bigger tires will make the ride more comfortable. For RANCHO Santana we do recommend 4x4 at all times.




Private Charter Flights


A wide variety of charters are available to/from ECI and MGA - contact Alex Cuadra for routes and price + 505.5818.4456




CAR rental


There are a few agencies in our area to rent any day. Many people get rentals at the airport in Managua on the way here. We recommend making a reservation for a car in advance as there is limited supply. The car rental company will also deliver the car to you upon request, sometimes rental company will pick you up and take you to the rental place for paper work, ask in advance to avoid confusion. There are a few agencies in our area to rent any day. Dollar Car Rental has 2 offices: Costa Esmeralda Airport +505.5792.8000 Rancho Santana Main Entrance) +505.8237.4844 Near Entrance to Hacienda Iguana there is a rental agency: Enterprise/Alamo/National +505.2560.3066 www.grupoanc.com Efren.morales@ehiglobal.ni ASK for complimentary drop off/pick-up




Are there any gas stations in the area?


Your best bet is to fill up in Rivas. There aren’t any actual gas stations in this area but there are a few places that sell gas and will siphon it into your tank.




Can you drink the tap water?


The water in our area is actually spring fed and is fine to drink, but we do also provide our guests with 5 gallon bottles of purified water for drinking.




Where is the closest grocery store?  ~HACIENDA IGUANA


Hacienda Iguana has 2 convenience stores in the commercial area - Rios Market or Stop and Go Shop - both have good options however if you need to fully stock-up we recommend to stop on the way from the airport in either Pricesmart or La Colonia. Another near by option is Riviera Plaza (located 500m south of Hacienda Iguana Entry) Your best options are: Managua: Pricesmart (buy in bulk, basically Costco/Kirkland) Rivas: La Colonia or Maxi Pali. We also have weekly fresh deliveries!!!! WhatsApp to order: Fresh Farmed Eggs (monday deliveries) +505.8257.0219 Fruit/ Veggie truck (mondays, wednesdays, Fridays)+505.8912.1927 Meat delivery San Martin (Javier) +505.8450.0099 Fresh Fish Manuel +505.8649.7973/8580.9746 FRESH Baked sourdough bread - whatsapp Joan to place an order +1.619.335.3964 - english only




Where is the closest grocery store?  ~RANCHO SANTANA


La Tienda convenience stores in Rancho Santana offers organic produce thats grown in RS, ready to eat options (cooked by RS restaurants), frozen pizzas and much more. If you need to fully stock-up we recommend to stop on the way from the airport in either Pricesmart or La Colonia. Another near by option is Riviera Plaza (located 500m south of Hacienda Iguana Entry) Your best options are: Managua: Pricesmart (buy in bulk, basically Costco/Kirkland), La Colonia. Rivas: La Colonia or Maxi Pali.




Rentals: Golf Cart/Bike/Moto Bike | TAXI


Daily Golf Cart Rental - $40/day Bicycles – beach cruiser - $10day/$50wk, simple mnt bike $15day/$70wk, pro mnt bike $25day/$120week - available at Scoops and Spokes – located in the commercial center of Iguana. Taxis and Airport Transportation- Please inquire as rates vary due to group size, distance and mode of transport (car, SUV, van or bus). Usually $100 to $160 from airport - message your property manager.





Local Activities

SPA TREATMENTS


MASSAGES Massages in the privacy of your own home - relaxing, sports or deep tissue 1h-$40, 1.5h- $80 - +505.8848.5113 Manicures / Pedicures / Blow dry For delivery manis or pedis, hair cut or a blow dry please contact Brenda to discuss the prices and schedule a treatment +505.5790.1139/+505.8475.9479 Cupping $95 Cupping therapy is an alternative form of medicine and is perhaps better known as a traditional Chinese Medicine, like acupuncture.The basic idea behind cupping therapy is to place glass cups or silicone cups on the patient’s skin to create a vacuum, so the blood is drawn to the surface of the skin in specific parts of the body that need healing. We use only the dry cupping method. The Benefits of Cupping Cupping therapy offers several advantages including aiding in promoting blood flow and increase blood circulation to muscles and tissue, supplies oxygen to cells, loosens knots, and can release and drain excess fluids and toxins. The Effects of Cupping After employing the cupping method, it is common to find that small bruises or redness will remain on the treated areas of the body, most commonly the back. This is due to all the blood being forced to the surface of the skin. It is believed that if there is the presence of higher amount of toxins in an individual’s body, then the redness will be deeper and more noticeable. The marks experienced after a cupping session can last anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks. The bruises are not caused due to any form of blunt trauma. Therefore, they should not hurt.




Trips by Boat


For our boat trips we use the local pangas from Gigante. The boats have a small canopy, can sit up to 7 people and there will be a cooler with water and soda aboard. They can pick you up off the beach at Hacienda Iguana if you can swim out, otherwise you will need to take the boat out of Gigante. Make sure you bring a good hat, a towel and lots of sun lotion!!!!! One way to/from Gigante Roundtrip to Gigante Day trip to San Juan Del Sur Fishing (minimum of 3 hours) Snorkeling and Cruising Surfing Trips – To Rancho Santana (Santana or Rosada) To Manzanillo To surf spots between Manzanillo and Popoyo To Playgrounds and/or Lance’s Left




Surf lessons


**Surf Lessons with board – Taught by one English speaking certified instructor. Lessons will be arranged to the surf instructor discretion and depending on your level. Springfield Surf Lessons - +505.8940.8557 or springfieldsurflessons@gmail.com Or Everyday Nicaragua +1.619.742.2267




Surfboard Rental


- NSR - Ceasar’s Shop n Go Market - Every Day Nicaragua These stores have many options of boards as well as stand up paddle (SUP) boards that they rent. You can check out their quiver at the commercial center of Iguana.




Horseback Riding


We will have the horses brought down to the beach for you and you can ride them around whereever you choose. If you’d prefer a guided tour let us know and we can arrange that for you - $30 per hour per horse.








Yoga


Yoga Lessons - Drop in classes are available but locations and prices keep changing, Whatapp +505.8848.5113 for current schedules Private Yoga Classes Private classes at the house To book: info@yoginnicaragua.com or whatapp Z +505.8865.6465 1 person - $60 2 people - $35 per person 3 people - $27 per person 4 people - $23 per person 5 people - $20 per person




Golf in Hacienda Iguana


Our Golf course has 9 holes. It’s a challenging course. Week day Weekend Green fees $15 $20 Rental Cart $20 $20 Rental Clubs $10 $10 At the Pro-Shop you will find different items for sale: Golf Balls / Tees / Beverages / Cigars / T-Shirts / Hats / Golf Gloves Open from 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM from Monday through Sunday. For more info Whatapp the ProShop +505.8855.7903




Golf in Guacalito


DAVID MCLAY KIDD'S SIGNATURE - OCEANFRONT 18-HOLE COURSE A challenge to players of all skill levels, Guacalito Golf Course seamlessly melds Mother Nature's contours of terrain while at the same time, preserving the delicate, breathtaking environment that makes Nicaragua's Emerald Coast special. Beautiful hardwood bridges made with fallen timber grace many holes. A special treated-water irrigation system keeps with the resort's commitment to sustainability. Located south of Hacienda Iguana and about 30 min drive WhatsApp to book +505.8848.5113




Solidary Tours - visit local village


Seeking out an authentic Nicaraguan experience?
Look no further than Solidary Tours, a community based tour program with the intentions of introducing you to the raw beauty of rural Nicaragua.

Whether it is milking a cow, working with pottery or cooking traditional Nicaraguan food with one of our experienced locals.

100% of the profits from our tours are used to support and strengthen our remote communities.

- Nature Trail in El Tambo Community – Learn Medicinal use of local herbs

Experience the rural life in the easy accessible community El Tambo.
Jump on an ox-cart or horse, and take the time to stop over and discover the secrets of natural Nicaragua. Uncover the power of natural medicine and the history that heritage trees have had in fighting off diseases for generations in Nicaragua. As you continue to explore the jungle of Tola you might even get to see the native wildlife with monkeys and butterflies.
The real treasure of this tour though, is in a community farm visit. The ladies of the town will show you how to make delicious tortillas and you will enjoy them with a view over the untouched Nicaraguan nature. It’s a local experience you don’t want to miss! $15 USD per person by ox-cart $20 USD per person by horse 4 people minimum – can be combo ox-cart and horses However if you have 1 or 2 people then they can split the cost as long as minimal is $52- remember it ALL goes straight to the families you are visiting. Add-on: stop for lunch at “Campestre De Los Cultivos” Try fresh and delicious local cousin “farm to table! Menu attached below. 8260 5661 – Restaurant open Thursday-Sunday from 12pm - 9 pm
- Pottery Tour in Remate Community

Learn how to make traditional cooking potteries and visit a handmade brick factory in the remote community Remate. Step further into the Nicaraguan experience, learning how to milk a cow and following with a demonstration in serving fresh corn tortillas and the local cheese cujada. giving you the opportunity to really experience rural life in Remate. $15 USD per person by ox-cart, $20 USD per person by horse 4 people minimum – can be combo ox-cart and horses However if you have 1 or 2 people then they can split the cost as long as minimal is $52- remember it ALL goes straight to the families you are visiting.

- Cashew & Mango Farm in Cuascoto

Visit Don Bruno at his cashew & mango farm in Cuascoto. He and his family will show you how they harvest them and you can try fresh cashew straight from the trees.
After that you will explore the rural life by riding a horse or jumping on an ox-cart to a small farm where the ladies of the town will show you how to make fresh tortillas and eat it with Cuajada local cheese and natural juice. $15 USD per person by ox-cart $20 USD per person by horse 4 people minimum – can be combo ox-cart and horses
However if you have 1 or 2 people then they can split the cost as long as minimal is $52- remember it ALL goes straight to the families you are visiting. - Feeding the animals at Finca Doña Fany Great for families and Kids!!! Visit Doña Fanny’s finca and get a lot of fun by feeding the animals, milk a cow and learn to prepare a traditional juice. Fanny and her family welcome you to show you their traditional way of living. After that you will explore the rural life by riding a horse or jumping on an ox-cart to a small farm where the ladies of the town will show you how to make fresh tortillas and eat it with Cuajada local cheese and natural juice. $15 USD per person by ox-cart $20 USD per person by horse 4 people minimum – can be combo ox-cart and horses
However if you have 1 or 2 people then they can split the cost as long as minimal is $52- remember it ALL goes straight to the families you are visiting.
- Hiking Mohosa Hill

For the more adventurous type, hiking Mohosa Hill is the tour for you! It is a 4-hour round trek up one of the highest peaks in the area. As you hike, a local guide will ensure that you get the most out of the experience, bringing your attention to the beauty of the local wildlife and environment. You can expect to see monkeys, sloths, local birds and many more exotic animals on the trail. All the effort to reach the summit will be worth it when you meet the breathtaking view of the Tola region. Further in the distance, you will see lake Nicaragua, and find for yourself a new appreciation of the Nicaraguan landscape. $15 USD per person (includes a natural juice and snack) However if you have 1 or 2 people then they can split the cost as long as minimal is $52- remember it ALL goes straight to the families you are visiting.
Besides the highlights of the above tours, we do normally the “make your own tortilla”, the oxcart tour to contemplate flora y fauna at the area and enjoy the the local people living. It is about 3 hrs tour but we can also do tailor made experiences.




Cooking Class “Campestre De Los Cultivos”


(el Tambo community) Restaurante con el mejor sabor local del campo nicaragüense. Local Restaurant with the real Nicaraguan flavor. Directions: Driving from Hacienda Iguana towards Tola, about 5 min, turn to your left after the cemetery, continue until you hit another road and turn right, continue to the school and 500 mts passing the school. Cooking class – 2 people minimum, $20 per person
Please book through Claudia Silva csilva10111@gmail.com or directly on the Facebook page of Solidary tours
In case you need any transportation for your guests we can always arrange it for you at extra charge.




Spanish Lessons


Want to learn Spanish in the privacy, comfort and convenience of your own home? We will bring Spanish lessons to you! 1-1 tutoring will increase your Spanish skills tremendously, and you don't even have to travel. You will learn the exact same material that we teach students on campus. Your teacher assesses your current Spanish level and customizes a learning plan according to your needs. Whether you are a beginner, a professional seeking to expand your vocabulary for work, or already fluent but want to perfect your speaking, we can accommodate you. We also teach children! PAYMENT METHOD: CASH To book: Mercedes +505.5873.6470




Zip line and Aerial Adventure Park Las Nubes


Zip line and Aerial Adventure Park Las Nubes (near San Juan Del Sur) If you are adventurous this is the park for you! Adventure Package - $38USD Canopy Tour Tarzan Swing or Rappel Park Entrance Fee Adrenaline Package - $46USD Canopy Tour Tarzan Swing Rappel Park Entrance Fee Eco Tour Package - $39USD Canopy Tour Walking Trail Iguanarium Park Entrance Fee Nature Package - $14USD Walking Trail Iguanarium Park Entrance Fee Transportation: $100 up to 3 ppl $160 up to 12 ppl To book: +505.5816.7205 ***Prices are subject to change so double check at the time of booking***




PHOTOGRAPHY


Surf * Engagement * Family * Portraits * Pregnancy * Real Estate * Underwater Pregnancy * Underwater Kids * Events Brian Scott +505.8221.0382 I am a freelance editor/videographer, with over 9 years of experience in the field of professional media production. One of the many passions in my life is capturing the essence of unique and active outdoor lifestyles through film and video editing. For me it’s not just work... it’s a way of life.




Kite Surfing / Skateboarding / Guitar / Ukulele / Piano / Singing / Music Theory Lessons


Dario Romano is a Multi-Discipline teacher from argentina thats been living in Hacienda Iguana for the last 5 years. Runs a skateboarding school for all ages from 4pm at the school in between the gates, offering group lessons for 5$ and private lessons for 20$, there are days for different levels so call him to see what day and time fits you better. Also does individual music lessons for 25$ an hour and better rates if you take multiple lessons, with Dario you can learn guitar, ukulele, piano, singing and music theory in general. If you are already an intermediate or expert musician he has a vast study of latin rhythms and can help you expand your musical horizons. Also ask about open mic, shows, or you can even book him alone or with his band for private events and parties!. With 5 years of experience surf guiding and teaching in Nicaraguan waters he offers surfing lessons for all levels, 50$ for a 1-2 hours class (depending on your energy) includes the board (better rate if you have your own board). And last but not least December through beginning of April windy season starts and you can’t miss the kitesurfing course for beginners or kitesurfing tour with equipment rentals for advance riders in the coast of Lake Nicaragua, visit beautiful secret spot fresh water beaches in front of the splendid views of Ometepe island. Make the best out of you stay during the windy season and use those super windy days when surfing isn’t that good to learn a sport that complements perfectly with your waterman lifestyle, and for half the price of first-world kitesurfing schools. The price is 150$ for a 2-3 hours session/lesson, includes equipment, transportation to the spot and a visit to Rivas to shop for groceries or have lunch in the best restaurants of the area and have a good taste of the real Nica life. Whatsapp: +50587342256 Email: dariolromano@gmail.com Instagram: @dariolromano




Violin Lessons


Marvin Amador Jr. +505.7626.4033 Marvin is extremely talented Violin musician from Masaya, Nicaragua. Please contact him directly with any questions.




Cooking CLASSES with Tatiana Di Spirito


Buongiorno ! My name is Tatiana and I am an Italian chef + the owner of CASA ANANAS located in the commercial area of Hacienda iguana. My experience comes from studying gastronomy as well as travelling around the world. Let me take you on a tasty trip to my beloved Italy through my special dishes made with true love. Whether you are looking to gain a new skill, getting closer to the Italian culture or want to surprise someone on a special occasion, here comes the unique chance to achieve that. BUONISSIMO, CHEF TATY IS HERE ! I understand my workshops are not for everybody. If you are simply curious to taste authentic italian cuisine I would like to welcome you to dine with us under a magical garden for a savory culinary experience. From granny's secrets directly to you : PASTA & SAUCE workshop dinner accompanied by a matching Italian wine . The taste and quality of homemade pasta is second to none. In this workshop you can decide to prepare different types of pasta such as short, long and stuffed . 1. TAGLIATELLE 2. PAPPARDELLE 3. STUFFED TORTELLINI MIN 4 PEOPLE GROUP (LESSON CAN BE Attended by KIDS above 12 years old) 35 $ per person workshop + lunch/dinner + a glass of Italian wine Please contact me in ADVANCE +505.8417.3795 Other OPTION of workshops are available, some of them with different prices : MEAT , BALSAMIC vinegar & WINE PIZZA & FOCACCIA KIDS COOKING CLASS




Lidership Classes - Coaching - Personal Growth


Venture Within Venture Within’s vision is to be a positive force for good in the world by providing transformative experiences in personal growth. Christy does this by curating personalized experiences that deeply connects you with your innermost desires and potential. The rejuvenating wake-up call you experience is designed to level up your quality of life for the long term. Through facilitating extraordinary one-on-one coaching or culturally immersive retreats overseas, you will experience a positive mental shift that harnesses your life passions. As you tap into what is most meaningful to you, you will learn to release old beliefs and integrate replenishing new behaviors that best serve you. These experiences are designed to give you clarity as you pursue and nourish the things that are most fulfilling to you – in life and business. You will be empowered to do amazing things.





Restaurant Guide

In Hacienda Iguana


Casa Ananas Italian Restaurant Don Eloy's Bar and Restaurant. DownTown Iguana Restaurant Iguana Brewery Brewery and Restaurand. Delivery Pili's Kitchen - Hacienda Iguana's Beach Club Hacienda Iguana's Beach Club restaurant and bar. Scoops and Spokes Ice cream Shop Organic, sustainable, 100% local ingredients ice-cream made in Nicaragua.​ Scoops is a part of Scoops and Spokes business located in Hacienda Iguana, near Tola, on the Pacific Coast of Nicaragua. The idea of an ice cream store in Nicaragua has come to us after spending a year helping create the ice cream flavours for a very trandy LA store. Nica beach life was definatley lacking a cold refreshing treat! The secret of our ice cream is we do not use any chemicals or products that we do not know the origin off. Everything that goes into our ice cream is locally sourced within Central America. It can be hard because we do rely on seasonal frutis for our sorbets, for example. But this is how you know you are getting the freshest and the best quality product from us!




South of HI / RS


Aqua Cafe Cicada Cafe located in Playa Gigante, Nicaragua. Our goal is to provide wholesome and delicious food while not putting a strain on the enviroment around us. With so many mass produced, chemical laden food products these days, we have chosen to go back to basics, all of our products are created in our little kitchen on the beach with experience, whole organic foods and love. All dietary needs welcomed! Food, Happiness, Community - CAFE CICADA See you soon! Khaki Wieters Juntos Beach Bar and Grill We offer beachfront seating in our restaurant & bar, with pool table, live music & daily specials. We offer international cuisine, seafood, pizza as well as fresh cocktails and smoothies. Guacalito El Pozo Cervezas muy eladas y buenos cócteles pizza las mejores. El Tambo - Campestre de los Cultivos Restaurante con el mejor sabor local del campo nicaragüense. Local Restaurant with the real nicaraguan flavor. Located in the heart of El Tambo Community. Machele's Come check out the vibrant and colorful fishing village and friendly vibes of Playa Gigante, Nicaragua! Surf, fresh seafood, fresh cocktails, cold beers, live music. We have it all in Playa Gigante!




North of Hacienda Iguana and Rancho Santana


Avilas Mexican restaurant Malibu Popoyo Serving unique, healthy meals inspired by an authentic fusion of Central American and Western cuisines. We offer a variety of dishes packed with flavor and designed to sustain your energy and vitality. Bena Onda Our beachfront hideaway is located on one of Nicaragua’s finest beaches, Playa Santana - where our nearest neighbors are grazing cows and howling monkeys. Enjoy ocean views while sipping a cool drink in our open air palapa restaurant or refresh in our swimming pool. Costa Oeste Clean flavors, simple ingredients. Dutchy's Deli Place to hang out and chill betweens sessions. Get your daily baked bread or let us prepare you one of our delicious sandwiches Mad Dog's Pizza Delivery Magnific Rock Dine in one of the most relaxing enviornments in Nicaragua overlooking the Pacific Ocean from every window of our open air, cedar finished restaurant. Our bar staff can shake up a range of delicious cocktails, or if sipping a beer during a sunset is more your choice, a wide range of beers are always available. Nacho's by Aloha Bungalows Paolone Restaurant Italian. Red Pepper