Ometepe Island Stories and Tips

Ferry to Ometepe

I was awakened this morning by little kids screaming and the sound of someone hammering. I left the room to go take a shower, but was stopped because Pirates of the Carribean was on the TV. After sitting through the whole movie, I made it to the shower. Our boat for Omepete didn't leave until 2pm, so we hung around the Oasis Granada for a while.

When we went into town to catch a cab, it was flooded with people and rows and rows of flea market-type shops. The cab took us to the gate to buy tickets for the ferry. The women at the counter didn't speak any English, and she kept asking if we wanted up or down tickets. We didn't know it at the time, but "up" and "down" were first and second class. We went for the cheaper ticket and got the "down" ticket. We didn’t know until we got on the ferry that it was going to be a four-hour boat ride to the island.

After about an hour on the ferry, the volcanic island came into view. It looked as though the ride wouldn't be as long as expected. But looks can be deceiving. It was still about another three hours until we reached the dock on the island. We gathered our bags and went to the front of the boat to take in the sights along the way. A local Nica from San Carlos tried to talk to us, but he did not speak any English, and we didn't speak Spanish. So Chris got out his translation book, and we had about a two-hour conversation with him until it started to rain. From a distance, you could see the storm over the lake, and we could tell we were going to get rained on. When the rain started, the waves picked up and occasionally splashed up on deck, soaking anyone standing there.

When the ferry reached the port, the rain was pouring down. We ran under a roofed area to stay dry, waiting/deciding what to do. A local boy came and got us and loaded us and our bags in the back of a truck and headed up a muddy road into the night. To keep us from getting wet, there was a tarp in the back of the truck, and the guy spread it over us. The ride was less than ten minutes before we got to our hostel, Hotel Castillo. When we arrived, we checked in at the counter, which was also the counter for the restaurant. The restaurant served awesome food and was really cheap. Naturally, this is where we ate our dinner and breakfast the next morning. The rooms were pretty nice, but small, but the experience was worth the four-hour ferry ride.

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