Travel to Nicaragua

Flying to Nicaragua

There are no direct flights from Europe; you have to fly via the US. Flights to Nicaragua with codeshare partners British Airways (BA) ( and American Airlines (AA) ( go via Miami; flights with Delta (, Air France ( and KLM ( are from London to Managua via Atlanta, and flights with partners United ( and Lufthansa ( are from London to Managua via Houston. To get from New York to Managua you need to fly via another gateway US city, usually Miami or Houston, or via San Salvador on Avianca (

Flight times:

Flight time from London is around 14 hours depending on connections in the US. From New York around 7 hours 20 minutes, depending on stopovers.

Departure tax:

Departure tax of US$35 is normally included in the air fare. Transit passengers and children under two years of age are exempt.

Other airports in Nicaragua

Augusto Cesar Sandino International Airport

Airport Code: MGA. Location: The airport is 12km (7 miles) north of the city (journey time - 15 minutes). Website: Public transport description: Bus and taxi services run to the city.

Travel by rail

Driving to Nicaragua

There are three land crossings into Nicaragua from Honduras: Los Manos, El Guasaule and El Espino. There’s only one road crossing into Nicaragua from Costa Rica at Peñas Blancas. Ticabus ( runs routes between Costa Rica and the following: Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico and Panama. Transnica ( runs from Costa Rica to El Salvador and Honduras.

By road note:

Try to get to the border crossing as early as possible to avoid long queues. On entering Nicaragua, there will be people offering to help you with your paperwork or carry your luggage for a small tip, just decline politely but firmly.

You will have to complete an immigration form, have your passport stamped and pay US$10 for a tourist card, US$2 for immigration and US$1 for the local municipality, all at different windows of the immigration office. Motorists have to pay an extra US$6 per person for insurance. Make sure you get all the correct stamps and keep all the receipts, as you will need to produce them when you leave. There is a US$3 charge on leaving. There are toilet facilities on both sides of the border that charge a nominal sum but accept both colones and córdoba.

Getting to Nicaragua by boat

Nicaragua has five international ports are all served by national and international cargo ships: Corinto and Puerto Sandino on the Pacific, and El Rama, El Bluff and Puerto Cabezas on the Atlantic.

Cruise ships:

San Juan del Sur is an increasingly popular stop on the cruise ship circuit with major lines such as Princess ( and Cunard (, including it in their Central American itineraries.

River routes:

The water crossing into Nicaragua from Costa Rica is via Los Chiles using the Rio Frio. Exit stamps and taxis must be paid in Los Chiles before boarding public boats for the journey down the river to San Carlos and Nicaraguan customs.