Tegucigalpa, Honduras – León, Nicaragua
Getting from Tegucigalpa to León was actually much easier than I first expected it was going to be. There is a bus daily scheduled to leave at 9.30 from the Tica bus station (this is near the airport so if you aren’t familiar with this part of town I would suggest getting a taxi here as otherwise quite hard to find). This information can all be found on the tica bus website as well but sadly you can’t book tickets online so it almost defeats the purpose.
We arrived at around 9.00 to the station and were able to get a ticket pretty much straight away. You have to pay in cash and through all the way to Managua even if getting off at León, it costs about $22 USD per person. Once the ticket is paid for, it’s just waiting for them to sell all the tickets on the bus and they will delay their leaving time if they don’t have a full bus yet. We ended up leaving a little after 10am. The buses themselves are comfortable enough and usually have wifi onboard, but the last one I was on had used up their data for the month when we got on.
From here though it took about 2.5 – 3 hours to get to the Honduran border and just to be aware on the bus before this, the conductor will come around and collect everyones passports and $15USD per person to do all the border crossing and pay the entrance fee into Nicaragua. If you want to save yourself a couple of dollars though you can keep your passport and do it yourself and it will cost you $12 USD, I chose to pay and let the conductor do it just to speed things along and not have to make other passengers wait for me while this was happening.
The Honduran border itself is pretty easy from there. Passengers get about a 20 minute stop while the conductor deals with the border exit and there are people all around changing Lempiras (Hon) for Córdobas (Nic), there are also people selling icecream and snacks of all sorts. It’s pretty much just a little market, then it’s back on the bus for a couple of minutes to the Nicaraguan border. Once off, you have to go through a little health post where they ask your nationality and if you have a fever. However, if you don’t speak Spanish you stand there looking a little silly but now that you know, just clearly state the country you’re from and then say no on the next question and you will be let go to go and get your luggage off the bus and head through the security checks.
Once you have your luggage it’s a short wait in line to get your bags checked, just make sure you declare any electrics as well (Tablets and laptops and such) otherwise they stop you and make you do another full check. After that, they let us back on the bus as they gave our passports back which is a really good feeling to get it back.
Then it’s only another hour and a half into León, and we were let off at a Gas Station where there were taxis waiting to take us where ever we wanted to go in the city.
There are a lot of old and very beautiful churches in the city and plenty of places to stay. If you find yourself in León, and haven’t found anywhere yet and are looking for a good cheap place with a really good party vibe check out Bigfoot hostel. They have got some great artwork, a fully licensed bar, a delicious restaurant and some really nice workers. 🙂
Anyway, I hope this helped a bit and you enjoy your travels as much as I’ve been enjoying mine.