Qs re Barcelo Montelimar, Nicaragua | Debbie's Caribbean Resort Reviews Forums

Hi there!Hope someone will be able to answer a few of my questions:My family and I (5 people ranging in age from 11 months to 61 yrs) are going to the Barcelo Montelimar for 2 weeks this Easter. We have read all sorts of reviews but still have a few questions:1. are the mosquitoes bad? I read in a travel book that they have malaria and yellow fever, so I am anxious about the mosquitos.

2. are the bungalows nicer than the hotel rooms? we requested the bungalows.

3. is bottled water readily available?4. do they re-stock your room every day? including beer?5. what currency did you use? Mostly USD, or did you use the cordoba at all? (I know the casino takes local money.)6. was there anything you wish you knew before going there on your visit? Some piece of advice, or something you wish you had taken?7. the travel books also say there are tarantulas and scorpions – did you see any?8. the reviews said there were cockroaches – did you see any?9. were the staff accomodating? I will be travelling with an 11 month old . . . 10. were there jellyfish in the local beach11. what are some excursions/day trips that you would recommend?12. how long was it to the hotel from the airport? 1 hour?13. are tips expected?14. did you feel safe there?15. do they stil have the bonfires on Sat nite? they seem really cool!That’s all I can think of right now – hope you don’t mind the bother.I appreciate your time!

Hi SEVP: I will answer as per last winter. I had a group there for two weeks.1. Didn’t see a mosquito…Did see flies.2. We had Hotel room No Problems…Rest of group had bungalows als no problems all were happy.3. Bottled water left in room everyday. We asked for more and got it everyday.4. Fridge is stocked daily…Soda and beer and water.5. We all used US$. On tours the Esso Mini Marts even accepted it.6. We are seasoned travelers and and thought we had it down to a science or almost as weforgot battery charger for camera. 7. Never seen much for bugs in our travels. During rainy season many more insects.8. No one in our group complained of bugs in the rooms, rainy season many be a different story.9. Staff was all very accomodating, no one had complaints.10. I never saw a jelly fish on the beach. At certain times they can be a problem any where.11. I went on most of them, all were very good. 12. I am thinking about 1 hour or a bit longer.13. I don’t think tips are expected, but you get your moneys worth is smiles and thanks and will be treated like royality. I use the following on tips on my travel notes to all that are going."Being an all-inclusive property tipping is not necessary, however we find if you leave a small tip for the maids, waitresses and bartenders, your sevrice will be extra special. These people work 10-12 hour days 6 days a week for a very little wage and really appreciate receiving a small tip for their service. You will find that your money is well spent."14. Went on tours and traveled around by bus and taxi and never felt uncomfortable. No one in our group experenced problems and I had people that were all over the country on their own everyday.14. Once a week bonfire on the beach.Feel free to ask if you have more questions or want more on any of the above…Ben
THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!Thank you for taking the time to answer all my Qs. I am sure that my family and I will come up with a dozen more over the next little while – I will work on a new list and hopefully you will find the time again to be so helpful!

Thanks, again!

On my answer to SEVP on time from the airport, after talking to my wife I want to modify the bus ride from a little over a hour to 90 minutes…Sorry Ben

Hey, Ben – me again!I was wondering if it is worth getting a lot of Cordobas, or just stick with American?Also, the website for the hotel states that the electricity is 220, is that correct? So the plus is the same style, just a different voltage?With the tipping, is it like Cuba (where you can give items as tips) or is it just money that people tip with there?Do you have to sign up for the a la cartes? Are there line ups?My mother wanted to know if there were face clothes and a hair dryer in the room?With regards to the outings, do you know of a web sites where I can read about them? The only ones that I can find are ones that are 7, 10, 14 day tours. What ones would you recommend? Which ones were your favourites?THANKS, again

Sonja

Hi Sonja: In all our travels we never had need for Cordobas. In the small villages and markets the locals all seemed to be using US$. Right now the CDN$ is worth more than the US$ so watch it and get your $ at the point that they start going the other way if ever. You can exchange money at the lobby.The electricity is 110 the same as you have at home.I see people giving gifts all over, mostly at the end before leaving. I always bring plenty of $1 bills for tips.You have to sign up at the main dinning area for a la cartes but I never seen a line. The girl was just as you enter for breakfast.There are hair dryers in the rooms but all hotels in Latin Counties face cloths are iffy…Bring your own and if there are none don’t leave them out as the maid will think they are the hotels and take them.The travel office has many to choose from…We went Managua, Granada & Leon. All three being very long days…Also went on the canopy tour and the shopping tour all in which were very good. I will try to find find a complete list of the tours and post it.

Ben

Thanks, agian, Ben – your the best!Glad to hear about the electricity! We were worried about getting sterilized water for our baby’s bottles. Now we can just take a travel kettle with us and boil the bottled water!Hopefully you will find your list – I would love to see it!Thanks, again!

Sonja

2007 list of tours from the Barcelo Montelimar Hotel1st pirice is adult 2nd is child…All prices are US $…MANAGUA / MASAYA VOLCANO $60-$45 0800-1730Visit old and new Managua and see the main points of interest of the Capital. Then stop at an artisan’s market before lunch then visit the Masaya Volcano.GRANADA / LAS ISLETAS $62-$47 0800-1800Visit the city of Granada, the oldest European-founded city on the American continent. Its tourist attractions include San Francisco Convent and its museum. In addition a boat tour of an archipelago of 350 small volcanic islands.MAYASA MARKET $25 0800-1400You’ll find the largest arts and crafts market in Nicaragua, with the greatest selection og souvenirs. This market overflows with pottery, hammocks and arts and crafts.APOYO LAGOON / MASAYA MARKET $60-$45 0800-1800Visit an arts and crafts workshop and then the Masaya Market. Then it’s off to Norome, at the foot of Apoyo Lagoon (an ancient volcano), for lunch and time for sunbathing and swimming.VOLCANO / CANOPY $80-$60 0800-1800The natural reserve of Mombacho Volcano is a sanctuary for a wide variety of animal and plant species, including magnificent orchids.Then it’s time for adventure with the Canopy, an activity that will get your adrenaline flowing!LEON / HERVIDEROS $62-$42 0800-1800Leon is the country’s second largest city. You’ll visit the Metropolitan Cathedral, the largest in Central America. The San Jacinto Hervideros are located 20 minutes from Leon. They are small craters covering a field and revealing all the undrground volcanic activity.
After reading about those tours and the reasonable prices, it really makes me want to go back. We only took one tour the first year we were there and that was the Managua/Masaya Volcano. Very interesting it was. We had considered Granada and sorry we didn’t go. Second time we went we stayed put. A few of us did venture off the resort to be ridden into the nearby village on bicycles.

I would recommend going on the ATV. We had so much fun riding on the beach. If I remember correctly it was a reasonable price too.

There are kids at the gate with pedal trikes (two passenger taxi) and will take you to the village on a tour.You can still rent 4 wheelers by the hour on the beach. I think they were $25 per hour. Also Yves and Nancy, the reps at the hotel had a tour to the nearby fishing village in an old school bus. It was $15 and we all had a very good time. We went to the beach where the fishermen were returning, to the river where the women were washing clothes, to the school house and these types things.They also had a sailing and deep sea fishing tour at San Juan Sur.You go to a natural reserve for turtles and have a barbecue on the beach. $115 0600-2000Many also hired a taxi with an English speaking driver for $80-$100 per day. Up to four people can go. Everyone was more than happy with their day.

Last let me add that the pool is very large, the largest I have seen. They claim it is the largest in Central/South America. There is a bar, snacks, swim-up bar, and rest rooms in the middle of the pool. There are two bridges to the center. The hotel was full and always found chairs at the pool, never having to put towels out early.

Hey Koz…..shhhhhhhh. Husband and I had the convenience of having a bungalow really close to the pool. We also liked our corner, didn’t we? Good times, lots of laughs.

You guys are making me so excited!! It is going to be a long 5 months waiting!Had another Q:What are you allowed back via customs? What are the amounts for liquor, etc.?Thanks

Sonja

Hi SEVP …. I’m just curious to know how you booked Nicaragua. I presume your leaving out of Halifax. I’m from Fredericton, NB. Did you book Halifax to Toronto? Did you book your hotel and air separately? Just curious as I’m also interested in this destination and it’s not offered in this area…or Halifax for that matter, or I thought not! You can PM me if you like.

No, we are leaving out of Toronto. We booked the tickets through American Airlines, Toronto to Managua via Miami; then booked the hotel portion (separately) through Trip Central (they were able to get a better rate than I was able to get). We also booked the transfers through them as well . . . when it was all said and done, it was a little less than if we had to have booked a package. I am very excited! We are busy getting our vaccinations figured out – can’t wait!
Thanks SEVP. We’d have the added cost of flying from our City to Toronto …which is not "cheap" ….lolLast year I looked at the possibility of leaving from Bangor, Maine. I beleive it was with American Airlines also. But, it took most the day to get there. If I remember correctly they had Bangor to Boston to Miami to Nicaragua.
Yes, Bangor would be an option – perhaps if we go back, we’ll go that route. I was looking for the quickest and most direct route possible as I will be travelling with my son. Also, half of our group is coming from Nfld, so we’ll all just meet up in Toronto . . .

S.

We are past the 3 month mark – and I am soooooo excited. While there hasn’t been much activity on this site; there have been some good/new reviews on the "other site".

Hope you all have a wonderful Christmas!

Hi, Has anybody stayed in this hotel with kids (7 y.o. and 4 y.o.)? I am thinking of going there the last week of April 08 and wondering: 1) How safe is the ocean? any pollution to speak of? Do we need to expect high waves in April? How shallow is it? I hope it is not too rough, although this resort is being marketed as a surfing place. Is the beach sandy or stone-based? 2) How child friendly is the kids club? What do the kids do all day? Do they have some sort of organized activities for kids? 3) What is make-up of the hotel clientele? My understanding is that 50% Canadians, 40% Europeans+ Yankees, 10% South Americans. 4) Has anybody driven with kids in Nicaragua? Do we need to have a car seat or can we just wing it without the car seat for 90 minutes drive from Managua to Barcelo? 5) Are there any kids activities nearby? For my kids – watching a monkey in the jungle or visiting a banana farm would be more than enough…. we are not looking for a Disneyworld monstrosity 6) Is Granada a kid frienldy place?

Thank you very much in advance for your advice,

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