- Where to Go
- The Best of Nicaragua
- Nicaragua’s Best Surfing
- Hiking Nicaragua’s Ring of Fire
- Nicaraguan Arts & Crafts
- Nicaragua’s Great Green North
- Sportfishing in Nicaragua
- Down the Río San Juan
- Nicaragua’s Celebrations & Fiestas
- Volunteering in Nicaragua
- Diving & Snorkeling in Nicaragua
- Managua’s Revolutionary Driving Tour
In Nicaragua, as in all of Latin America, women are both adored and harassed to their wits’ end by “gentlemen” hoping for attention. Catcalls and whistles are rife, often accompanied with an “Adios, amorrrr,” or a sleazy, “Tss-tss!” More often than not, the perpetrators are harmless, immature young men with struggling moustaches.
It will either comfort or disgust you to know that Nicaraguan women are forced to endure the same treatment every day and you should note how they react—most ignore the comments and blown kisses entirely, and some are flattered and smile confidently as they walk by. Angrily losing your cool is ill-advised, as it will only feed the fire.
Be prepared for this part of the culture, and decide ahead of time how you plan to react.
Physical harassment, assault, and rape are less common in Nicaragua than elsewhere in Central America, but they have all happened, especially when alcohol is involved. Take the same precautions you would anywhere else to avoid dangerous situations.
Tampons can be difficult to find, as almost all Nicaraguan women use pads (toallas sanitarias) due to custom and social stigma, as tampons are often associated with sexually uninhibited women. Try the bigger supermarkets if you’re in a pinch; most pharmacies and pulperías carry pads, usually called “Kotex,” regardless of the actual brand name.
© Randall Wood & Joshua Berman from Moon Nicaragua, 4th Edition