Visualising leading a life more simply and getting off the tread mill? Dreaming of an affordable holiday with sun, surf and coconut trees? Nicaragua has all of this but many people are so concerned about the aspect of personal safety and property crime that they never come to see what Nicaragua has to offer. Certainly the countries previous political history have put Nicaragua in the spot light for the wrong reasons.
Despite this Nicaragua is in its second decade of a stable democratic society.
Crime is always a concern in any country and it is true that many of the countries in Central America have a very high crime rates.
Nicaragua however reports only 14 crimes for each 100,000 inhabitants per year. By comparison El Salvador reports 71 in 100,000, Honduras 67 in 100,000 and Guatemala with 52 in 100,000. All significantly higher.
According to http://www.numbeo.com/crime/rankings_by_country.jsp Nicaragua has a moderate crime index of 42.37, which is just slightly higher than Australia's index of 42.16. The USA has a much higher index of 50.01.
Most people are surprised to find that Nicaragua is the second safest country to visit in the Americas. Only slightly behind Canada.
There is a lack of wealth for many people in Nicaragua but with an open mind set this provides an opportunity to learn and understand the differences. Despite the absence of wealth most Nicaraguans are generous, and regardless of appearing to have nothing they always have something to offer.
There are still very poor regions in Nicaragua where people live without electricity and running water, however, due to this the natural environment has remained mostly untouched.
All travel, from commuting between work and home to being in a new country requires awareness of your surroundings and minimising the potential risks. Nicaragua is no exception, and as a developing nation is certainly met with challenges. Nevertheless, as the statistics show, it is as safe or safer than many of the more developed nations around the world.
So whether considering a permanent move, thinking of building a holiday house or contemplating a surfing holiday, yoga retreat or relaxing vacation you need to come and see for yourself. Letting preconceived beliefs and fears stop you can only limit your possibilities.