It has taken months and months to write this -- probably because we are all still recovering from having to return home! My family of five (kids 13, 15 & 17) stayed at the Finca for several nights in August, having discovered it from Trip Advisor posts and thinking it looked too good to be true. It wasn't. It's a lovely, quiet, spot on a wonderful island. We stayed in one of the casitas, 2 to each of the two double beds and one on a fold-out couch in the other room. Not luxurious, but perfectly nice and very pleasant to have the outdoor area with the hammock and chairs to hang out in from early morning through to dusk. Surrounded by beautiful groves of trees and the sounds of the howler monkeys, perfect for strolls.
Ernesto met us at the ferry and was very helpful. (We didn't rent a car and were happy we didnt - it takes a lot of skill to drive the off-roads on Ometepe without destroying your vehicle). We didn't wind up doing any hikes with Ernesto because we had a contact from our guide in Granada, whom we loved, but we're such Ernesto would be a terrific. Marvin was hosting and cooking and the food was very tasty and reasonably priced. Eating at the outdoor tables at the main lodge building was extremely pleasant. Marvin went out of his way to make sure we were comfortable, and at the end of our stay joined our table and talked at length about the Finca, Nicaragua overall and his love for NYC and San Francisco - it was a treat!
We swam every day and also went swimming at Ojos de Agua nearby. On one swim at the Finca we heard a howler and my son was able to swim about a minute or two (the waters are peaceful to a spot where he could observe the monkey at the water's edge. Lots of birdlife too. Also took a long walk through the plantain groves on the last afternoon.
With our guide, who was excellent (see my post for No Rush Tours Granada for details on our Ometepe guide), we toured the island and my husband and the two oldest did a hike to San Ramon, deciding against the full volcano hike of either volcano because there was actually a death from a fall during the time we were there. The San Ramon hike was strenuous enough for my crew - they were glad of their decision not to attempt anything longer.
We loved Ometepe -- even with some of the recent "improvements" , the pending air strip and all that is inevitable to come, it still has lots of character and is incredibly beautiful. Enjoyed the archaeology museum (forget exact name) very much as well, and the beautiful Charco Lagoon area - had a great walk there - loads of monkeys and egrets.
Loved that the Finca was more than just a "resort" but a full, working farm, constructed thoughtfullly. It is very quiet, and if you're with young children who get bored without a zillion things to do, it's not right for you. Our family loved it.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- San Juan de la Isla offers a beautiful scenery situated on the island of Ometepe. In this shelter visitors can enjoy the serenity, comfort, outdoor activities and adventure sports that Ometepe has to offer.In this place guests can relax in an atmosphere of peace and tranquility of the old hacienda, which dates back to the late nineteenth century and is now converted into a comfortable lodge with an enchanting rural country life and the beauty of the Cocibolca coast. San Juan de la Isla offers a variety of rooms and lodging options, as can be seen below. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Finca San Juan De La Isla Hotel Altagracia
- Finca San Juan De La Isla Isla De Ometepe, Nicaragua - Altagracia