Nicaragua: Beautiful Memories, Wildlife Conservation Adventures, And A Clear Clean Water Community Mission

Nicaragua is a place that continues to hold a revered place in my heart and in the hearts of my family.

I fell in love with Nicaragua after connecting with a friend who had family there. My family and I have grown closer to these friends and our memories with them are some of my favorites. As our families became closer, their niece who has traveled with us each time we are in Nicaragua, would watch the girls for us when needed. Needless to say, our twin daughters have been going to Nicaragua with us, of course, since they were very young and we know they’ve grown to love our trips there as much as we have.

As with any place that holds your heart, I’ve become truly committed to the people of Nicaragua. We bought land there and my non-profits have worked to enhance the lives of the people there as well. Food For Thought By The Sea worked with Waves For Water to supply water filters to the people of Nicaragua. There is a Section of Waves For Water called Restaurants For Water on their site and this organization serves to deliver these filters. There are projects going on all along the Pacific coast there. From Chancletas in the north to Tola in the south and along the Caribbean coast, in the jungle outside of Blue Fields.

I’ve traveled there to connect with the indigenous people of Nicaragua that speak forgotten languages, live in places with no automobiles, and have forged self-sustaining cultures complete with shopping and all manners of daily living.

I’ve traveled to a research center where they are studying the tapir, an animal that looks to me like wild boar with a horse head. They’re almost extinct, and I was lucky enough to see the project to get them to reproduce and grow their population. These intriguing animals are almost prehistoric looking and without this project, they’d be completely gone.

Chris Jordan was one of the people who work on the project and he traveled with me. I was soon grateful for his company because it was an adventure just to get there: We took a boat through the pearl river, and the boat engine died. We found ourselves nowhere near anything, truly terrified, with no cell service. We overcame our fear and got the engine going. Moving again we went to Pearl Lagoon for lunch (a delicious and well-earned fish meal) and then took another boat to the jungle. From there we took a horseback ride for 45 minutes and hiked from there another 45 minutes to the research center. After the research center we too another 45-minute horseback ride and 45-minute hike to where they were bringing the water-filters to a school.

The excursions were quite exciting but there were other joys on the trips I took to Nicaragua, including the exposure to a completely new culture. I loved going to surf and enjoy the beautiful beaches, watching volcanoes at night erupting in the distance. Climbing those volcanoes on the lake during the day was also nearly indescribable.

Lake Nicaragua is the only fresh water lake with oceanic animal life, sharks, swordfish and the like and it is one of the most breathtaking places to which I’ve ever been.

 Whether we spent the day sailing, hiking, or slack-lining between palm trees outside a local bar, we often found ourselves enjoying huge fresh-caught fish at lunch and dinner. While I enjoyed my fair share of fish and other fare, no trip of mine is ever truly complete without exploring and learning to make a local specialty or two. Nicaragua has so much to offer in this department and so much of it will be new to an American palate.  On my trips I love to learn to make a local dish and in Nicaragua that meant Nacatamales and Pili’s cheese cake. I learned to make them from Antonia, the woman who cares for the house that I rent there.  Pili taught me to make her passionfruit cheesecake/panna cotta hybrid in the kitchen of her own restaurant I brought that recipe and memory back and you can find it served at Langosta Lounge in the summer.

Nicaragua is an infinitely beautiful and memorable place for my family and I. It is a place where we go to explore and enjoy and to be of service and we would encourage you to make your own journey there. Should you take my advice, I promise you’ll never look at palm trees, volcanoes, clean drinking water or cheesecake the same way again.