Is Nicaragua Safe for Solo Female Travelers?

Nicaragua has a moderate safety level for solo female travelers. It's generally peaceful with friendly locals, but like everywhere, precaution is still needed. Street crime including theft and pickpocketing can occur, especially in crowded places. Solo female travelers should avoid traveling alone at night and consider staying in well-reviewed accommodations.

Safety index

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How safe is Nicaragua?

Safety at nightUnsafe

While Nicaragua is generally considered safe during the day, caution should be exercised at nighttime. Walking alone is not recommended, especially in less populated or unlit areas. Street crime such as pickpocketing and purse snatching are more prevalent after sundown. Always ensure to use secure transportation and avoid isolated areas.

Public transportationModerate

Public transportation in Nicaragua, particularly in major towns and cities, is quite comprehensive and accommodating. The system consists mostly of old school buses from the U.S. converted into ‘chicken buses’ and taxis. However, overcrowded taxis and buses can lead to discomfort and petty theft. It's not rare for pickpocketing to occur, so it's essential to be attentive and keep your belongings secure. Avoid travelling at night if possible, and always be aware of your surroundings. As a solo female traveler, you might also receive unwanted attention at times. All this being said, thousands of visitors use these means of transportation without any major issues every year.

Street harassmentModerate

While Nicaragua is generally considered a traveler-friendly country, as with anywhere, solo female travelers might experience a moderate level of unwanted attention. Catcalling can occur, but it is usually harmless and can be navigated effectively with caution. Most locals are friendly and respectful, especially towards tourists. However, it's always recommended to avoid traveling alone at night or in deserted areas.

Petty crimesModerate

In Nicaragua, petty crimes such as pickpocketing, purse snatching, and theft from hotel rooms may occur. It's especially common in tourist destinations and crowded areas. It's recommended to keep an eye on your belongings at all times, use safe deposit boxes provided by hotel and be cautious in public transportation.

Tap waterUnsafe

In Nicaragua, it is generally not recommended to drink straight from the tap. The water quality varies significantly across the country, but it can contain bacteria and parasites, particularly in rural areas, that can cause stomach ailment. Many locals boil their water or buy bottled water. As a foreign traveler, it's prudent to follow this practice to avoid any waterborne diseases.

Is Nicaragua safe right now?

Avoid non-essential travel to Nicaragua at this time due to the arbitrary enforcement of laws and the risk of wrongful detention. Exercise increased caution due to high crime rates and limited healthcare resources. Pay attention to the political situation and stay aware of any potential civil unrest. Follow security guidelines and always stay alert to reduce the threat of violent crime. This advice is especially relevant for travelers from the United States, Canada, and Australia, as these governments have issued safety warnings.
🇺🇸

United States Travel AdvisoryReconsider your need to travel

The United States Government advises reconsidering travel to Nicaragua due to the arbitrary enforcement of laws, risk of wrongful detention, and limited healthcare availability. It's recommended to exercise increased caution in Nicaragua due to crime. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: January 11, 2024
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Canada's Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution

The Canadian Government advises to exercise a high degree of caution in Nicaragua due to the political situation, potential for civil unrest, and crime. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: February 19, 2024
🇦🇺

Australia's Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution

The Australian Government advises exercising a high degree of caution in Nicaragua due to the threat of violent crime. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: November 10, 2023

Travel safety

Overall rating

Rating summary

Things to do

4.8/5

Safety

4.5/5

Food

4.8/5

Budget-friendly

4/5

Solo travel experience

Nicaragua is my favorite country in Central America. I felt very safe there all the time (I was traveling alone) and I used buses for locals, it was an extraordinary adventure. Ometepe is my favorite place.

Posted: December 25, 2023
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Solo travel experience

Nicaragua is an incredible country. I felt safe there while traveling, maybe just a little less in the city of Granada, but it's nothing to worry about, just a bit of aggressive whistling. The nature is beautiful, and the people are exceptionally friendly and kind. I particularly loved the island of Ometepe and the Apoyo Lagoon.

Posted: September 19, 2023
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Solo travel experience

I spent 5 weeks alone in Nicaragua, having no other means of transport than the chicken bus and walking. Not once did I feel in danger. In fact, all the time I only encountered friendly and sincere offers of help, and that's one of the main reasons why I loved this country. Of course, I never did anything I wouldn't do at home, like walking alone at night, being drunk and unaware of my surroundings, or getting myself into dangerous situations.

Posted: September 15, 2023
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Solo travel experience

I traveled alone as a woman and felt quite safe. Walking the streets was uncomfortable, as gentlemen usually shouted comments. I took buses (during the day) and did not go out / did not drink at night.

Posted: September 15, 2023
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Solo travel experience

I was here alone as a single woman for 5 weeks before my partner arrived. I traveled by bus by myself. I walked alone in San Juan del Sur and Rivas and felt absolutely safe. Everyone was incredibly kind and helpful.

Posted: September 12, 2023
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Solo travel experience

I was in Nicaragua alone as a woman traveling with a backpack and I felt safe, but I did not go out at night nor did I party/drink. People were understanding and respectful.

Posted: September 11, 2023
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Solo travel experience

I felt safe traveling alone in Nicaragua for 2 weeks. The whistling on the streets was intense, but other than that, I felt safe. I was cautious at night. Locals were mostly very nice and I had amazing conversations. Overall, I highly recommended Nicaragua for solo travels.

Posted: September 8, 2023
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Solo travel experience

About a year ago, I went on a two-week backpacking trip and had a great time. I never felt in danger and met very friendly people.

Posted: September 6, 2023
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Solo travel experience

I travelled alone through Nicaragua and I consider this place very safe, but I found the persistent hassling rather intense, even by Latin standards. Especially in the north of the country.

Posted: September 5, 2023
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Local experiences

Meet locals in Nicaragua

Diana

Diana

About Me

Hola! Me gusta mucho hacer amistad, intercambiar ideas, conocer culturas nuevas. Me gusta la gente alegre, honesta, integra, culta y educada. Busco amistades con valores e intereses en común.

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Stay with locals in Nicaragua

Diana

Diana

Granada

Can host for:

2 days

About me

Hola! Me gusta mucho hacer amistad, intercambiar ideas, conocer culturas nuevas. Me gusta la gente alegre, honesta, integra, culta y educada. Busco amistades con valores e intereses en común.

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Upcoming visitors to Nicaragua

Chrissy

Chrissy

About Me

Hello I’m Chrissy and I work in Veterinary Medicine I’m a nurse. On my free time I enjoy traveling and amusement parks.

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Kristina

Kristina

About Me

Hi :) would like to explore the area, grab something to eat or join for a yoga class?

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Safety in Nicaragua