We entered Nicaragua by speedboat, just as I already posted and were welcomed by the immigration with a bowl of fish soup.
This was a promising start.
We did find a very simple hotel in this little town Potosi, a small fisherman’s village down the slopes of a volcano.
The roads were gravel and sand with a lot of potholes and deep sand parts.
There were some busses for passenger transportation but also big trucks were used for this transport.
There were a lot of people riding horses, some for the freight.
Pulling carts was done with one or two cows.
The people looked poor, but were very friendly and smiled a lot when they did see us.
The first miles
The next day we followed the only road that was out of the village to the east.
It was very dusty and hard to ride due to the (sometimes deep) sand and big gravel pieces.
After 20 km the pavement started again and the road had very nice asphalt.
Small communities with little shops located in the houses of some people next to the very dense forest.
Also some meadows with cows and horses made it scenic!
The hills were present but not too hard, just rolling hills with not much altitude differences.
The mountains with some volcanoes were on the left, we were having fun cycling through this area’s.
The traffic was mild, not many trucks, pickups (a lot!) and some busses with occasionally a car.
The temperature was high and the shade was present but scarce.
So I did drink a lot. Tanja don’t sweat as much as I do, so I have to drink a lot more!
We stayed in several hotels and arrived in Granada (Nicaragua) after climbing several high hills through Managua.
This is the capital of Nicaragua and incredibly busy with traffic, also climbing the same hills, so the air was not clean, to say the least!
In Grenada I arrived just before dark and Tanja had another hotel because she couldn’t make it to Granada in time.
This was a very wise decision not to ride in the dark.
Tanja was not so fast in climbing and descending as I do and we made the deal that I could continue
and Tanja would take a lift or stay somewhere else for that night.
The next day Tanja arrived in Granada and we were having a good time there.
Grenada had a beautiful centre with well-maintained old buildings, a nice plaza with benches and a lot of shadow and activity.
Eric and Garbine
Here we met a Spanish couple that was cycling towards the south of Argentina, Eric and Garbine.
We had a wonderful talk together; they were the first cyclists we met on the road after leaving Mazatlan!
The next day we met them again on the plaza and we made a diner together.
This wasn’t a very good idea, because a lot of people gathered around us and were really close by.
I frequently had to push them aside. They were too close to our food and belongings.
In the end it was quiet again, so we could enjoy our meal together.
They had started cycling in Mexico and did a long tour through very remote places in Nicaragua.
They had to work on their bicycles to be able to continue.
In El Salvador they had a police escort all through the country. This meant a police car was behind their bicycles all day.
They did hear some stories about cyclists being robed of their money near the border of Costa Rica.
So we discussed the possibility of having a (tourist-) police escort from the place where this was happening.
Rivas; the police escort!
We did meet again in that place, Rivas, where they already arranged the escort the next day.
(They knew several high people, who could deal with this request)
We started that day at 06:30 and headed for the border.
It was a great ride, not many hills, nice meadows and some big windmills they were constructing there.
This was very good because the big lake was nearby and we experienced a fierce wind from the left.
Near the border there was a big traffic jam of trucks.
But we could pass them and after thanking the escort we crossed the border without a problem.
We would meet again later, because I promised them my “Spot device” after my trip was over in Panama City.
They will return the Spot device again after they will arrive again in Spain in about a year!