This southwestern beach town forms one corner – along with Granada, where we just were, and Ometepe Island, where we’re going next – of the Nicaraguan tourist triangle. SJDS’s main draws are surfing and nightlife. We understand it’s become a destination for actors and whatnot, and they say you often run across a celebrity or two on the beach or in the bars. Mathew McConaughy rather famously lost his flip-flop in the sewer here a while back. Not being much into surfing, clubbing, or sewer-celebrity-spotting, we decided to stay outside of town, where Lonely Planet assures us the beaches are cleaner and life is quieter.
We stayed in a family-run place a little north of the town called Enpalme a las playes. Its name means between the beaches, because it’s a short walk to either Playa Maderas or Playa Marsella. Our host gave us a little tour of the area when we first arrived. We liked Playa Marsella better than Playa Maderas. Not as good for surfing, so it was quieter. Also we are less likely to get hit by a surfboard when we’re out playing in the waves.