"Estelí and the North of Nicaragua" Departamento de Estelí by hanula

Departamento de Estelí Travel Guide: 35 reviews and 54 photos

The best thing about Estelí are the people

I lived and worked in Estelí for 3 months between June and September 2003. Estelí is a relaxed little city. It is the cigar capital of Nicaragua and Nicaragua's best football team Real Estelí (also referred to as "El Tren del Norte") comes from Estelí.

Within easy reach from Estelí are also three nature parks (Tisey, Miraflor and Cantagallo) and the town of Condega where you can visit Finca la Solidaridad (ride horses and stay over night in the farm) and Pedro Montenegro's wood workshop "taller Guacamayo".

If you are interested in getting to know other places in the North of Nicaragua such as the ones mentioned above I recommend you get in touch with people from Turicentro Estelimar tel: +505 713 4433. The touristcentre is owned by the NGO ASDENIC and they can help you arrange transport to all interesting places in the North of Nicaragua.

p.s. Do not miss out going to Rincón Legal at night. It is a Sandinista bar with a live band singing revolution songs. The atmosphere in the bar is fantastic!


Football games take place 3 p.m. on Sundays. The view of the surrounding mountain range is fantastic from the stadium. If you want to see local fans in action you should ask where the "Barra Brava" is.

Estanzuela waterfall

Salto de Estanzuela, located south of Estelí (a good day-trip), is a cool place with a beautiful 40-m waterfall with a pool to swim in. Local people go there for a picnic on weekends (might be an easier time to hitch a lift).

Note: When I went to Estanzuela it was a bit dirty. Not the water but the beach. People had thrown their rubbish all around the place. Up the hill above the waterfall there is also a place to bathe and it is nice and clean.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Off the beaten path, beautiful nature, lovely people, good football
  • Cons:?
  • In a nutshell:Estelí is a good parting point for exploring the north of Nicaragua
  • Last visit to Departamento de Estelí: Aug 2003
  • Intro Updated Oct 14, 2003
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Comments (2)

  • portughez's Profile Photo
    Dec 5, 2006 at 3:57 AM

    I am thinking of working in Estelí next year. How is the weather like there from July to September?

  • Hermanater's Profile Photo
    Oct 1, 2003 at 1:08 PM

    Salto de Estanzuela looks like a great place to go. Did you spend much time there ?

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