Central America has a lot to offer, but the Caribbean energy of this coastal region is my main motivation for traveling this particular part of the world. It’s as spiritual as it is densely green; as peacefully quiet as it is very touristy – not for everyone but I’m obsessed with the trip so far. The Caribbean coast, with its Jamaican presence and that of the Caribbean and African diaspora in Costa RicaBelize and Panama makes this trip personal to me, and I haven’t even seen it all yet.
That’s why I headed straight for Corn Islands in Nicaragua, an island destination often described as a totally different country from the rest of Nicaragua. When I told my Airbnb host, a friend I made on the bus from Costa Rica to Nicaragua, or the taxi driver to the airport, that I was Jamaican and in the direction of Big Corn and Little Corn island, the answer was the same: “you are going to feel como en casa” or, you will feel at home.
I knew it, I was even ready for it. Something else I definitely knew? It was very difficult to get to Little Corn Island, the smaller car-free island of the two.
After spending over a month on Big Corn Island (which itself is already a relatively small island), getting to know the community and starting my mornings by the ocean, I finally made my way to a small boat to the even smaller island.
From the mainland, you can fly with La Costena airline from Managua to Big Corn Island, then take a boat (a panga) which leaves at 4 p.m. each day for the small island. You can also travel by bus and then by boat from blue fields to Big Corn Island, but this trip is technical and requires a lot of organization, patience and stomach to sleep on a boat.