Thursday, 6 October 2011

Tegucigalpa to Matagalpa (Nicaragua)

Tues 4th & Wed 5th October

Corporate hotels may be the same the World over but at least they are comfortable, have all the facilities and usually everything works as it should, and we have no complaints with any of that…….

Our view of the city from the 5th floor…….

……Tegucigalpa's answer to Hollywood.

We decided to spend a third night here as all the shops and businesses were closed on Monday due to a public holiday (Military Day) so Bob was unable to source new bits for his blowing exhaust. It would also give us the opportunity to do a little exploring of the surrounding countryside……

..........but unfortunately the rain returned.

None of us had any appetite to go out on the bikes in that, so we spent the morning drinking coffee and doing a few chores.

In the afternoon the weather improved, so Terry and I decided to ride to the 'Valle of the Angeles' where the guide books say there are a couple of old historic and picturesque villages to see and some good roads.

Terry riding down the cobbled streets of Santa Lucia.

Santa Lucia was the first of the villages. In spite of the blue skies in the picture the heavens opened again within ten minutes of taking it and we made a belated attempt to get back to the hotel without getting too wet. Unfortunately we failed miserably and spent most of the evening trying to dry out our kit with the room's hairdryer.

Antonio, one of the waiters, was a gem. He sourced a new bolt for Bob’s exhaust and went out of his way to collect it. A grateful Bob ordered just about everything off the breakfast menu and still finished before Terry and me!

Heading for the border with Nicaragua.

After the last Border crossing none of us were relishing this encounter. We had done a little research and despite the language difficulties decided to run the gauntlet without assistance after finding a link to a site where a Spanish girl had recorded the requirements at each Central American Border crossing. For those contemplating such a trip, the info can be found at:

Outside the Immigration Office on the Nicaraguan side.

Bob showing that we made it.

Today's crossing was completed in about two hours without a hitch. Forewarned is forearmed they say, having said that we were told it was one of the less bureaucratic crossings.

Heading off into Nicaragua.

As we got through the border more quickly than anticipated we made for the city of Matagalpa just off Highway One. First impressions are good. The roads were in excellent condition. We were treated courteously at the two police checkpoints that we were stopped at and everyone was friendly and helpful.

Tomorrow we head for Granada.

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