So, you have decided you want to retire in Nicaragua, now what?
If you’re looking to retire in a beautiful country with an authentic Central American culture, then you’ll want to take advantage of Nicaragua. Once retired and living abroad, there are many popular categories to consider, like costs of living and the availability of amenities that should factor into your decision on where to settle. Nicaragua is known for its affordability, with low costs of living and high quality of life. A big bonus to retiring in Nicaragua is the availability of many amenities that are scarce in other developing countries.

Finding somewhere to live in Nicaragua won’t be an issue as real estate has been increasing in the last several years. Whether you choose to rent or buy, there are many budget-friendly options for you all over the country.

Retire In Nicaragua: What To Consider Before You Go

You may be asking, Is Nicaragua a good place to retire?

It has been rapidly becoming a popular place in the minds of many ex-pats who seek retirement abroad in Nicaragua. This region has great opportunities with low property taxes and an affordable income. It is considered one of the safest countries in Central America.

There are several types of communities you might consider when planning to retire in Nicaragua. Whether it’s a lively beach town on the pacific coast, colonial city center, or a quiet mountainous village, there are plenty of options for everyone. Check these 14 places to visit in Nicaragua!

The following will break down some ideal options for retiring in Nicaragua. From gated ex-pat communities to local Nicaraguan neighborhoods, it is important to remember that this is only a general outline of what the different communities have to offer and not an extensive list. Depending on where you retire, there are many other factors to consider when choosing your retirement location, such as climate, crime rates, and health care options.

Choosing The Perfect Retirement Destination


If you are looking for a family-friendly location with a community of many ex-pats, then San Juan Del Sur is the right choice for you. This pacific beach town is located just two hours and a half south of the capital, and it seems to have more charm and character than its neighboring city. The fine sand beaches are perfect for spending the day soaking up the sun or taking in the scenic views.

The city offers a vibrant nightlife with plenty of low-cost bars and restaurants to choose from, as well as various shopping opportunities. Strolling through the main street is fairly safe, but being aware of your surroundings at all times is good practice no matter where you are in Nicaragua. The locals here are very friendly and hospitable, and even though there is a bit of an influx of foreign travelers, the city still retains its Nicaraguan character. Check out more things to do around San Juan del Sur.


If you prefer a more traditional way of life, then Granada is probably a better fit for you. This city boasts a wide variety of historical and cultural attractions, making it a popular tourist destination. There are several museums in the city that offer unique insight into Nicaragua’s past, including its tumultuous relationship with colonial cities like Spain and Britain.

The city also has various traditional Nicaraguan eateries, a waterfront promenade, and a few malls. Granada mostly caters to foreign visitors, so the prices here are high compared to other cities in Nicaragua. As for safety, it is still recommended you take precautions when going out at night, but there is generally less crime than in other cities.


If you prefer a more cosmopolitan setting, then Leon may be your best bet. Like Granada, this city is full of historical and cultural attractions. The local art scene here is vibrant and there are plenty of museums to explore. You can also visit the nearby Masaya Volcano, which still has active lava!

Leon offers many restaurants specializing in local Nicaraguan cuisine, as well as a few bars and pubs. It’s relatively safe to walk around at night, but be aware of your surroundings.


If you are looking to get away from it all, then La Isla de Ometepe is the place for you! This island in Lake Nicaragua has very few amenities and is much more isolated than other locations in the country. It’s the perfect spot for backpackers and people who want to enjoy the outdoors.

Many people come here just to hike one of Ometepe’s dormant volcanoes (Maderas and Concepcion), or to stay in an Eco-lodge that is completely off-the-grid. You can also fish, go bird watching, or take a boat tour around the other islands in the lake.


If traditional culture and history are more to your liking, Matagalpa may be a good choice for you. The city has a pleasant climate and the streets are lined with various cafes and bars. It’s also located in a very fertile valley so there is plenty of local produce to enjoy.

Matagalpa also holds several annual festivals which you can learn about at the local museums. The area is relatively safe to navigate by yourself, but be careful during lunchtime when many people are out on the streets. This is when most crimes happen so try not to look too touristy!

Nicaragua’s Retiree Benefits Program

Nicaragua and Costa Rica have a similar retiree program. To obtain a Nicaraguan retirement visa, you must first obtain residency; then you may apply for one. In order to acquire Nicaraguan residency, applicants must fulfill the following criteria:

  • Provide a copy of your passport
  • Provide two passport photos
  • Provide a birth certificate or naturalization papers.
  • Posses no criminal recordProvide a certificate of healthShow proof of assets that are equal to or greater than the value of a return ticket home.

To qualify for a retirement visa, individuals must show that they have a permanent monthly income of $600. This might be Social Security, a pension, or other out-of-country earnings. The applicant must also spend at least 180 days in the country each year. After five years, the visa holder can apply for citizenship.

Healthcare In Nicaragua

Nicaragua has a great healthcare system with many highly specialized medical centers and hospitals in the capital city of Managua. The Vivian Pellas Metropolitan HospitalHospital Bautista, and the Military Hospital are three of the most prominent hospitals in the country which serve all people.

Leon, Granada, and Matagalpa have a number of high-quality hospitals and private clinics that provide excellent care at an affordable cost. All of the cities mentioned above have a Centro de Salud (Health Center) that provides a thorough examination, along with any medicine you may need, for minor cuts, stomach/intestinal problems, cold and flu symptoms for free.A doctor’s visit in Nicaragua is typically about $25. A house call will cost you between $35 and $50. Depending on the extent of the job, a blood test may cost anywhere from $10 to $15.

There is no such thing as standard health insurance in Nicaragua (you may look into worldwide medical coverage), but Vivian Pellas Metropolitan Hospital offers a two-tiered plan that functions similarly. For a minimal yearly charge (based on age and pre-existing conditions), you can get significant savings on lab testing, operations, hospital stays, illness management, and prescriptions.

Cost Of Living In Nicaragua

The cost of living in Nicaragua is very low compared to other countries around the world. Depending on where you go, a meal at a restaurant can run from $3 to $8, while a full meal from a street vendor runs between $1 and $2. The cost of rent is very low in Nicaragua compared to other countries around the world, though it varies depending on where you are planning to live. Renting a 1 bedroom apartment in the capital runs between $150 to $300 per month. Renting a similar apartment in Granada, León or other popular tourist destinations costs around $300 to $800 per month depending on location and amenities. Electricity expenses in Nicaragua are much lower than what you would find in other places in the world. The average power bill runs between $30 and $80 per month and phone and internet costs average $45 per month.

Buying VS. Renting In Nicaragua

It is always better to own property in Nicaragua as opposed to renting it. There are a number of reasons for this:

Property ownership is a form of savings as prices will only appreciate over time. Land and apartments are available at incredibly low prices compared to other countries around the world and your land can be used as collateral when securing loans. If you choose to, you could also buy land in Nicaragua and rent it out for income purposes. It would make more sense for someone who has residency in the country because they would not have to pay any taxes or fees for owning their property.Check these 8 tips when buying property in Nicaragua!

Renting has become a common option for those moving to Nicaragua as it allows individuals to move around the country more freely by not being tied down to one property. If you want to explore different retirement locations in Nicaragua, renting may be the better option for you.

Pros and Cons of Retiring in Nicaragua

Are you thinking about retiring in Nicaragua? If so, you’re not alone! Nicaragua is a popular destination for retirees due to its low cost of living and beautiful beaches.However, before you retire in Nicaragua, it’s important to consider the pros and cons. In this blog post, we will discuss the pros and cons of retiring in Nicaragua so that you can make an informed decision.

Pros of Retiring in Nicaragua

  • Low Cost of Living:One of the biggest pros of retiring in Nicaragua is the low cost of living. In Nicaragua, you can live a comfortable lifestyle on a budget of $800 to $1000 per month (depending on location). This is much less than what you would need to live comfortably in the United States or other developed countries.
  • The Climate: Another pro of retiring in Nicaragua is the climate. The weather in Nicaragua is tropical, which means it’s warm year-round. If you retire in Nicaragua, you can enjoy the beach all year long!
  • Beautiful Beaches: Another big pro of retiring in Nicaragua is the beautiful beaches. Nicaragua has some of the most stunning beaches in Central America, and they are all easily accessible from Managua, Granada, and San Juan del Sur. Think about how good retiring right by a beautiful sunny beach would be on your physical and mental health!
  • Friendly Locals: Nicaraguans are known for being friendly and welcoming ex-pats, which makes retiree life easy and enjoyable.
  • Large Ex-Pat Community: Cities like San Juan Del Sur are known for their large communities of ex-pats, many of which are also retirees. Having this community at your disposal is perfect for newcomers that are looking to feel welcome when moving to a new place.

Cons of Retiring in Nicaragua

  • Insecurity: One downside to retiring in Nicaragua is safety concerns. Although it is generally safe to travel in Nicaragua, there are areas that are not as safe as others. It’s important to do your research and avoid these areas when possible.
  • Poor Infrastructure: One of the biggest cons of retiring in Nicaragua is the poor infrastructure. The roads are often in disrepair and there are few hospitals or medical facilities. This can be a problem if you need consistent access to medical care.
  • Language Barrier: Another potential con of retiring in Nicaragua is the language barrier. Unless you know Spanish, you will likely need to learn some basic phrases before retiring to Nicaragua.
  • Healthcare: Another consideration when retiring in Nicaragua is healthcare. Healthcare in Nicaragua is not as developed as it is in other countries, so retirees should make sure they have good health insurance.

Ready To Live Out Your Retirement Dream?

There are many more amazing benefits to choosing the Nicaraguan retiree lifestyle. Retiring in Nicaragua is an excellent option for those who want to live in a country where the cost of living is low, the healthcare system is highly advanced and affordable, and there are many opportunities for investment. If you are intrigued by the idea of retiring in Nicaragua, now is the time to consider taking the first steps towards your new life here.