A few months ago I decided I was in major need a trip but I had no idea where I wanted to go. After spending an afternoon getting lost in the black hole of travel blogs I stumbled upon EL CAMINO Travel. EL CAMINO is essentially a travel company but they have two things that make them stand out from the rest. First, they create small group trips that stay away from feeling too touristy and second, a professional photographer travels along with you to document your trip. They happened to have a trip to Nicaragua when I had vacation time and I booked it right away. Here are my 13 reasons to travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

1. Tree Houses

The first few days of our trip we stayed in the Casitas at Maderas Village. I slept in the upstairs loft space which felt like I was sleeping outside.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

2. Capoeira

I had no idea what to expect before we took this class but after a very intense warm up with our teacher Jean, learning the Brazilian art of Capoeira was quite the experience.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

3. Surfing

This was by far my favorite thing that we did on the trip. I had never surfed before and Playa Maderas was a great place to learn.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

4. Catamarans

Relaxing on a catamaran after the previous days’ workouts was the perfect break for our sore muscles.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

5. Deserted Beaches

We jumped off the Catamaran and swam to shore to spend some time on Playa Blanca, a beautiful beach that felt like it was a deserted island.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

6. Ceviche

I am not usually a big fish eater but I couldn’t help but devour the Ceviche, especially when we caught our own fish and had Ceviche fresh from the water.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

7. Colorful Cities

While wandering San Juan del Sur and Granada you can’t help but get swept up in the vibrant colors. They made every street the perfect photo opportunity.

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8. Private Island Dinners

On one of our last evenings we took a boat for a surprise dinner at Isleta El Espino, a private island where you can stay in their dreamy eco friendly bungalows.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

9. Markets

I’m not usually a big shopper while traveling but even I couldn’t resist the woven colors in the markets.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

10. Volcanic Lakes

After spending so much time on the beach we spent an afternoon at Laguna De Apoyo, a lake sitting in a crater of the Apoyo Volcano. It was one of the most peaceful places we went.

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11. Cigars

On our last day we learned to roll our own cigars with a local expert. They were the perfect souvenir to bring back.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

12. The People

With group travel I feel like so much of how your trip goes depends on the people. I went on this trip solo and it ended up being a great group to explore with.

13 Reasons to Travel Nicaragua with EL CAMINO Travel

13. The Photos

The photos speak for themselves on this one. I thought it would be awkward to have someone taking your photo but our photographer Valeria was amazing and so professional. These are definitely my new favorite travel photos.

PHOTOGRAPHY BY VALERIA DUQUE