Part of the beauty of San Juan del Sur if the freedom to roam with less obstruction of fences marking boundary lines & the fear of intruding on someone’s private property. San Juan del Sur is vastly still open, rolling tropical hills, bearing the most exquisite lookouts. San Juan del Sur offers hikes for the novice hiker as well as longer trails for the more advanced & adventurous. Before heading out for any of these hikes, make sure you fill up on a hearty breakfast at our Grand Rancho Bar & Grill, and bring plenty of water and sunscreen.
Hike to Playa El Toro
Mango Rosa offers a convenient guided tour right from your door to Playa El Toro, a beach seen on the television show, Survivor Nicaragua. One of our guides will lead you through the jungle and along the coast until you emerge onto the beach. Then you will twist your way along the coastline and back up to Playa Marsella.
Parque de Aventura
Parque de Aventura Las Nubes also offers guided hiking tours. Walk through the forest with an expert docent who teaches you about Central American plant life while you admire the many species of birds and search for monkeys, sloths, and reptiles.
Hike to Jesus Statue
A very popular hike people take here is up to the Jesus statue that towers over the San Juan del Sur bay. To access the steep road leading up to the statue you can either walk the beach and take the set of stairs at the far end or you can go through the neighborhood below, following the signs that read “Jesus de la
Divina Misericordia”. If you do decide to go through the neighborhood, and you have a 4×4 vehicle, you do have the option of driving most of the way up the hill. There’s a flat dirt area where you can park and then just walk the arduous steps that lead to the top. There is a $C50 (less than $2 at this time) cost to go to the top, but the views are more than worth it!
Hike to the Lighthouse & Fortress
Across the bay from the Jesus statue is a hidden lighthouse and fortress, that few visitors know about. The hike only takes about an hour, but is very steep in parts, so not for a novice. On the left side of the fish market or Acopio by the entrance to the port you will see a sign that points the direction to the trail. Hike past a shanty neighborhood with barking dogs and just keep heading up until the trail starts to head down. Keep following until the small, white, lighthouse comes into view. The fortress is a little bit trickier. On the way back down there is a small opening on the right side. Exit up to that ridge and follow a barely worn trail straight. In less than 5 minutes the hidden fortress should come into view.
Hiking at the La Flor Beach
La Flor Beach, best known for its turtle egg hatchings, also offers guided tours. The rich ecosystem is home to many species of plants and animals, making it a perfect spot for a walking tour. The trails begin at the guard station where you pay your entrance fee. There’s a tour takes you on the Tamarindo Trail which walks along the beach and another longer tour that takes you away from the beach and into the forest of guanacaste, mangoes, and other large & reforested trees. Keep a look out for howler monkeys & a diverse species of birds. The trail continues through a small estuary great for bird-watching. The longer route takes about an hour and a half and costs about $10 per group.
Hike to the Petroglyph & Waterfall
Enter the trail at Da Flying Frog Adventures and be sure to ask at the desk permission to enter the property. Follow the irrigation pipes to the river bed and continue along the river bed until you come to a large stone depicting a hunting scene carved what is thought to have been 1500 years ago. During wet season, if you continue up the river bed a little further, you will come to a waterfall.
El Encanto del Sur Waterfall Hike
El Encanto is a beautiful development right off the Chocolata. You can begin at the guard station, or if you have a car and less time, you can drive through to the second gate and begin your hike by trekking down into the river bed. Follow the river bed up and over large boulders. Only in the rainy season will this hike dead end at a fairly large waterfall, but even in the dry season its a nice walk.
Hike to the Radio Antennas
On the road out of town towards Rivas the trail begins on the left where you see a sign for “Chez Nous”. Follow the dirt access road up until you reach a gate with a sign that reads “Despues de Esta Puerta Usted Entra en una Reserva Privada” (After this gate you enter a private reserve), but many people have taken this trail and you are allowed to pass as it is an easement for the radio and Internet companies. At the top of the mountain you will be rewarded with the most breathtaking views. This hike takes about 2 hours, so be sure to bring plenty of water.
End your hiking excursion by a cooling off in our lagoon-inspired swimming pool with Nicaragua’s National beer, a Toña. We are lucky in San Juan del Sur that we can offer not only relaxation, but adventures that take you to the highest peaks through jungle forests and compensate your journey with stunning views. For more information on the other activities Mango Rosa offers, please click here.