Nicaragua Transport

Get in


The main international airport is Managua International Airport (Augusto C. Sandino International Airport), serviced by American Airlines, Delta, United, Spirit, Aeromexico, Avianca, Copa and Nature Air, and connecting Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Atlanta and Houston, and several major cities within Central America.


International buses are available between Managua and San Jose, Costa Rica (also stopping briefly in Rivas and Granada), San Salvador, El Salvador (stopping briefly in Leon) and Honduras. The buses are relatively modern and conformable, you can check Transnica, Tica Bus and King Quality or ask for the local ticket office. Another cheap one choice is "Chicken buses", provide a few times a week between Managua and Guatemala City, and stop in major cities like Leon.

If you are in the border area, a common strategy is take a bus to/from a major city that drops you off at the border, then, cross the border and board another bus. This method is much cheaper and especially for the Costa Rican/Nicaraguan border.


Miami-based Seabourn Cruise Line and California-based Princess Cruises offers luxury cruise liners plying the Caribbean and Pacific coasts.


Foreigners have to pay USD12 to enter any land border.
Get around


Managua International Airport has two offices serving domestic airlines. La Costeña provides "puddle jumper" propeller planes to Puerto Cabezas, San Carlos, Bluefields and the Corn Islands. It is the fastest way to get to the Corn Islands or anywhere on the Atlantic Coast.


Bus is the main and a great way to travel in Nicaragua. Most cities in Nicaragua have one main bus terminal for long distance buses, especially in Managua. Buses referred to as a "Chicken Bus", and most of them are old decommissioned yellow US school buses. A typical fare on theses buses may vary between USD1 or less for short trips to USD3-4 for longer trips.

Express Bus service is between all of the larger cities, usually requires a reservation and an assigned seat. A typical fare is around USD6. It's strongly recommended you reserve and purchase your ticket at least 24 hours in advance.

Minibuses is another method of travelling cross country, run to the main bus terminals in Matagalpa, Leon and Chinandega, to the Parque Central and Mercado de Artesanias in Masaya, and to/from a park 1 block from the Parque Central in Granada.


Taxis are relatively inexpensive throughout the country. It is advisable to use officially registered taxis, which have red license plates, or licensed tour guides. Remember before you getting into the taxi you should be negotiated the fare in Managua. A trip all the way across Managua during the day should not be more than about NIO90 to NIO100, except for the airport. In other cities range from NIO10 in Matagalpa, NIO15 in Esteli, and NIO20 in Granada.


Boat run twice per week between Granada and San Carlos, you can cross the border to Los Chiles, Costa Rica. Also, it is the only way to go the Isla de Ometepe or Solentinames. The fastest route to Ometepe leaves from San Jorge and goes to Moyogalpa, or you can leaves from Granada to Altagracia.


Road situation is not good, however, the northern highlands is great for car travel. Car rental are located at the airport and in other locations, and generally cheap, but it is wise to shop around. Visitors can use a driver’s license for 30 days after entering the country. The more famous rental company are Hertz, Lugo Rent-a-Car, Dorado Rent-a-Car, Budget and Avis. Note that some towns don't have outlets, so this method is probably best that you do so from Managua or Granada.