“Hidden behind the image of its picaresque president for the last few years, Nicaragua is suddenly emerging as one of the top 10 retirement and vacation hot spots in the world,” writes Central America Correspondent Michael Paladin. “Why? MSN, The Lonely Planet Guidebook, and the US News and World publications have been naming, promoting, and giving a lot of ink lately to the largest country in Central America. However, the international yard-stick of popularity is the annual tourist count. And, Nicaragua, for the first time ever, notched over a million visitors in 2010.
“Right now, Nicaragua offers three primary choices for the potential retiree: Granada, the Pacific beach town of San Juan Del Sur, and the off-the-beaten track old city of Leon. Old is relative in Nicaragua, with Granada claiming the prize for longevity: the Leones dispute this, pointing to the original city built on the slopes of a sleeping volcano. It is a question of two months, more or less, but the centuries-long claims dating from 1524 have never healed.”