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    Is This the Isthmus? Tour – Nicaragua Part 8

    Monday, August 21, 2017
    Moyogalpa, Isla de Ometepe to Granada, Nicaragua

    Loading the ferry in Moyogalpa, Isla de Ometepe, Nicaragua.
    Loading the ferry in Moyogalpa, Isla de Ometepe, Nicaragua.

    I pray to the Lord in Heaven above that this woman will stop reclining. The ferry from Moyogalpa, Isla de Ometepe to to San Jorge, Nicaragua.
    I pray to the Lord in Heaven above that this woman will stop reclining. The ferry from Moyogalpa, Isla de Ometepe to to San Jorge, Nicaragua.

    The chicken bus from Rivas to Granada, Nicaragua.
    The chicken bus from Rivas to Granada, Nicaragua.

    The bus terminal in Rivas, Nicaragua.
    The bus terminal in Rivas, Nicaragua.

    After a full week at the very pleasant Hospedaje Soma, I finally checked out, said my farewells, and headed down to the docks of Moyogalpa to catch the 10:00 am ferry back to the mainland. During the first third of the hour-long trip, the passenger interior was an absolute oven, which left me drenched in sweat. My sweat rag was working overtime to keep the bullets off my face. I was thinking about seeking some relief out on the deck, but luckily, by the time we reached the middle of the lake, a slight breeze blew through the interior, which made it more bearable.

    Walking into Granada, Nicaragua.
    Walking into Granada, Nicaragua.

    A hummus and pita bread lunch at the Hostal El Momento in Granada, Nicaragua.
    A hummus and pita bread lunch at the Hostal El Momento in Granada, Nicaragua.

    Sedimentary flyers in Granada, Nicaragua.
    Sedimentary flyers in Granada, Nicaragua.

    Exiting the docks in San Jorge, I hopped into a taxi cab with a couple of other backpackers–one of whom had slept in the same shared dorm room with me at the Hospedaje Soma. For just 60 cents each, we got whisked a couple of miles over to the chaotic and colorful bus terminal in Rivas. There, we jumped on a chicken bus bound for Granada. I was surprised to see close to a dozen other backpackers climb aboard. (The rest of the passengers were locals.) Total price of the 1.5 hour journey: less than $2.00!

    An attractive street scene in Granada, Nicaragua.
    An attractive street scene in Granada, Nicaragua.

    Colors and textures galore in Granada, Nicaragua.
    Colors and textures galore in Granada, Nicaragua.

    Amazing street art in Granada, Nicaragua.
    Amazing street art in Granada, Nicaragua.

    Even though the bus was packed to standing room only, that didn’t stop nearly a dozen food and snack sellers from squeezing their way through the aisle to hawk their wares. By the time the bus departed, two thirds of the aisle was full of passengers standing. It was so packed, I had to shield the side of my head to keep some girl’s bag from repeatedly hitting me in the face. Luckily, as we proceeded out through small towns in the countryside, some people disembarked.

    Iglesia La Merced in Granada, Nicaragua.
    Iglesia La Merced in Granada, Nicaragua.

    Iglesia La Merced in Granada, Nicaragua.
    Iglesia La Merced in Granada, Nicaragua.

    Iglesia La Merced in Granada, Nicaragua.
    Iglesia La Merced in Granada, Nicaragua.

    Right on schedule, after 1.5 hours, we pulled into the bus terminal in Granada, which was actually just a dusty dirt lot. I walked over to the Boca en Boca hostel, which had been recommended by the owner of the Hospedaje Soma, but they only had two fans in a dorm room with eight beds. Since I did not relish the idea of sleeping in a pool of sweat, I walked a few blocks over to the Hostal El Momento, a brightly painted, funky place where I scored a bed with its own fan in a huge 12-bed dorm room.

    A view from the bell tower of Iglesia La Merced in Granada, Nicaragua.
    A view from the bell tower of Iglesia La Merced in Granada, Nicaragua.

    A view from the bell tower of Iglesia La Merced in Granada, Nicaragua.
    A view from the bell tower of Iglesia La Merced in Granada, Nicaragua.

    Sunset-filled buildings in Granada, Nicaragua.
    Sunset-filled buildings in Granada, Nicaragua.

    With a couple of hours of daylight left, I walked around the town center, shooting photos of some amazing street art that included actual pencil drawings glued to the wall, which I’ve seen in very few other places. I also stopped by the Iglesia La Merced, a Catholic church originally built in 1534. The bell tower offers a really nice overview of the whole city, which is especially pleasant at sunset. Up there, a young German couple recognized me from the Hostel Heike in Bocas del Toro, Panama. The girl struck the bell once, despite signs in several languages saying not to. After I told them that we were all going to get arrested, the guy joked around that it was actually I who had rang the bell. I don’t think so, buddy!

    Words and photos ©2017 Arcane Candy.

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