Situated between the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, Nicaragua is renowned for its volcanoes, lakes, and beaches. Though it may not be as well known as other locations for surfing, it is certainly increasing in popularity and is gradually making its way to the top of many surfing enthusiast’s must-visit destination lists.
Attending a surf camp in Nicaragua provides the perfect opportunity to take in the beautiful settings and scenery whilst riding the waves.
Surf camps in Nicaragua are popular for the activities that they provide and the accommodation that they offer. The quality of the surf camp that you choose will determine how enjoyable your visit will be.
A surf camp offers a cost-effective way of spending time surfing whilst mixing with others who are also passionate about this sport.
Below, we have identified our top 10 picks of the best surf camps in Nicaragua. We have also provided a guide that will help you prepare for your vacation.
Rapture Surf Camp is situated a short drive away from Managua, Nicaragua’s capital, in the hills above Playa Maderas. Guests can enjoy relaxing in the jungle setting whilst looking out at the sunset. Some of the best surf spots are located in the area which are suitable for those at a beginner and advanced level.
Lessons are led by experienced local instructors, and along with 6 surf-guided lessons a week, guests will also be educated on the theory of surfing to ensure that they are more than ready to take to the waters.
There is also an opportunity to participate in a yoga class and a regular shuttle service is there to take guests to and from the town to attend post-surf parties as and when desired.
As an eco-friendly resort, Dreamsea focuses on providing comfort whilst focusing on wellness and positivity. Set in a beautiful and tranquil location, guests can enjoy relaxing in one of the resort’s many hammocks after spending a day at the beach learning about surfing.
The resort has a restaurant, bar, and pool and the area is also home to many fascinating landscapes and locations. Regardless of your surfing ability, you will be able to ride the waves whilst learning from some of the best instructors from the local area. Besides surfing, there are several other water sports available including diving and sailing.
Popoyo is a popular location for surfers due to its consistent wave breaks and offshore winds. As an undeveloped rural area, guests can soak up the amazing culture of the area surrounded by a picturesque setting.
There are three different surf packages available, each of which are catered to surfers at a particular level; beginner, intermediate and advanced. Your experience will then be personalized to your needs, to ensure that it is enjoyable and allows you to advance your skills.
4. Nica Surf
Nica Surf is one of the first surf camps to be established in Nicaragua and has been operating since 1998. There are 14 surf breaks located close to the lodge and accessing the beach is super easy. The consistent surf conditions provide surfers with the best quality waves. Guests can also enjoy daily boat trips to hidden surf spots.
The Ultimate All-Inclusive Surf Trip lasts for 7 days and includes unlimited surf sessions delivered by experienced surf guides, all meals and non-alcoholic beverages, air conditioned accommodation, and much more.
Located in Popoyo, the Playa Santana Beachfront Surf Resort is a paradise surrounded by vibrant greenery, blue skies, and the sea. The tropical weather and offshore winds make this a comfortable destination. The best surf spots are located a short distance away from the accommodation.
The luxurious properties have their own swimming pool and the restaurant and swim-up bar are also nearby. Guests can partake in surf lessons or surf guiding by boat along with a range of other activities.
At Thunderbomb Surf Camp, guests can enjoy surfing the waves without the crowds that typically flock to the beaches of Southern Nicaragua and neighboring Costa Rica. There are several excellent surf spots nearby that are known for their world-class breaks.
The camp is located on the beach of Santa Maria Del Mar and the accommodation focuses on providing a homely and comfortable feel. After a tiring day on the waves, you can then return to the resort to take in the beautiful sunset.
The team at Nicawaves Surf Camp have years of experience and offer packages that focus on providing guests with the best surfing experience at an affordable price. Beginners Bay and Popoyo are only a short walk or drive away from the camp.
The restaurant is open from 6 am to 11 pm and offers a selection of tasty meals. The accommodation is also equipped with a pool which offers the perfect place to relax.
Guests who opt for the Supreme Package will be provided with airport transfers, 7 nights of accommodation, boat trips, access to all of the facilities, and trips to the best surf spots. The price of the package differs depending on the number of people in the group.
Selina Maderas has two destinations located in Granada and Maderas. There are different types of accommodation available to accommodate guests with different preferences. Whether you are looking for high-end or budget-friendly accommodation there is something available for you.
The location is believed to be one of the best for surfing in this area with excellent left and right wave breaks. There is a comprehensive selection of packages available to cater to the abilities of each surfer. Those behind the camp also pride themselves on delivering a memorable experience.
9. Coconut Surf
Coconut Surf encourages their guests to immerse themselves in the local area, from dining like a local to living and surfing like a local. You can customize your package by selecting the length of time that you wish to stay, the activities that you would like to participate in, and any basics that you will require to enjoy your surfing experience.
Their package is based on a 6 night stay and includes transport to and from the airport, professional surf lessons, theory classes that will educate you on the basics of surfing, surf trips to take you to the best spots, along with city tours, visits to the local supermarkets and BBQs which can be enjoyed at the local beaches.
For those who are seeking a peaceful environment to surf in, the Miramar Surf Camp could be the perfect option. The offshore winds and wave breaks accommodate every guest regardless of their surfing abilities. There are three different types of rooms available which cater to different preferences and budgets.
The Ocean View room looks out towards Miramar point, the Ocean View Room Garden offers comfort and tranquility, whilst the AC room offers a more budget-friendly option.
There are various packages available. The surfer’s all-inclusive package covers accommodation, a boat trip, meals, and transportation. The beginner’s package has been customized for those who want to develop their skills. There is even the option for a large group of guests to rent out the entire place.
Meal Price Range
Meal prices in Nicaragua can vary. The total expense will depend on the spending habits of each individual. Whilst some may choose to dine out regularly and enjoy meals in restaurants, others may prefer to seek more cost-effective alternatives.
On average, most travelers spend just over C$330 on food a day with the average cost of a meal sitting at approximately C$133 per individual. It is possible to enjoy a cheap vacation in Nicaragua, however, prices tend to increase as you head towards coastal towns.
Many of the surf camps that we have listed above include meals in the total costs. In some cases, this may be a selection of snacks and in others, it may be 3 meals a day every day that you are there. Though the initial cost of the trip may be expensive, you will save money whilst you are there as you won’t have the expense of food.
Some surf camps include the cost of renting the surfboards in the total price, however, some will require you to rent this equipment daily. Typically, the cost of renting a surfboard in Nicaragua can range from $10 to $20 a day. Of course, it depends on the scenes and area you visit and the quality of the equipment.
When thinking about equipment rentals, you will also need to factor in the cost of your surf suit and boats. If preferred, you can purchase your own gear ahead of your trip, so long as you are prepared to carry it with you.
Prepaid Sim Cards
There are 3 networks in Nicaragua, they include Claro, Movistar, and Cootel. If you are going to be visiting a more remote location, Claro is the preferred option. Sim cards for each of these networks are sold in the majority of shops. When purchased from a Claro store, a Claro sim card will cost 50 NIO. You can also purchase a top-up voucher if necessary.
Shuttle buses are one of the most popular modes of transport in Nicaragua. Depending on the length of your journey, you can expect to pay anything between $20 to $50 for this service. Lengthier trips can cost as much as $250.
In Nicaragua, a liter of gas is estimated to cost around 39.360 NIO which is equivalent to $1.127. A gallon of gas will cost around 148.994 NIO and this equates to approximately $4.266.
Types of Risks
As there is a high crime rate and civil unrest in Nicaragua, those who are planning on traveling to the country are advised to avoid visiting remote locations. It is still considered to be safe for tourists, but a cautious approach is recommended.
How to Prepare
Travelers to Nicaragua must have a visa unless they are from a country that is exempt from needing one. Visitors from certain countries will be able to obtain a visa upon entering Nicaragua. A valid identity document is required as proof of immigration status and may be asked for by authorities.
Before traveling to Nicaragua it is recommended that you ensure you have the following vaccinations. They include Hepatitis A, Tetanus, Polio, Diphtheria, and Typhoid. Depending on the nature of your trip and the activities that you are likely to participate in, you may also need a vaccine to protect you against Malaria.
To clarify what vaccines you require, you can visit a healthcare professional who will be able to provide guidance.
Language and Currency
Spanish is the official language of Nicaragua, however, much of the population speak indigenous languages such as Ramo, Sumo, and Miskito. English is also spoken near the Caribbean Coast.
Checking Surf Forecast
Nicaragua has a tropical climate with warm temperatures that last for the majority of the year, although from November to January the temperatures become cooler. You can check the surf forecast ahead of your trip or whilst you are there online. There are several sites that will provide you with a surf report and the expected weather forecast.
Investing in travel insurance is recommended before going to Nicaragua. This cover will protect you should you become ill or injured. You will need to check exactly what is covered in your policy.
Having insurance is especially important when attending a surfing camp because there is an increased chance of an injury occurring. Your travel insurance may already cover you against injuries caused by water sports but it is worth double checking beforehand.