South Coastal Highway Nicaragua – Pacific Coastal Route

By Nica Biz – April 27, 2021

Last weekend’s news of the La Cruz (Costa Rica) Coastal Tourism Corridor just south of the Nicaragua border has evoked stories of the “South Coastal Highway of Nicaragua” (aka The Coastal Road or Tourist Route) as some of the players in the Nicaraguan tourism industry began lamenting about how the project would have been (and still could be) the perfect complement to the La Cruz project.

Comments in the press since the weekend also revisit the idea of a new border post between both countries at El Naranjo (Nica side) and Conventillos (CR side) as being a good start. It has always been a good suggestion to create a border crossing for tourist traffic, leaving the Peñas Blancas location for trucks and buses on the commercial Pan Am route.

Lucy Valenti, the President of CANATUR, the National Chamber of Tourism of Nicaragua commented that with Liberia being so close to the border with Nicaragua and a new crossing, it would really open up the possibility of promoting the multi-destination packages that the La Cruz initiative is talking about. In addition, Valenti said that the construction of the coastal highway would help to stimulate and promote the development of tourism.

South Coast Highway – A Brief History

The Project: To build a 141 kilometer (88 mile) tourist route from Costa Rica (with a new border crossing at El Naranjo south of Ostional) that would follow the coast line all the way north to Masachapa and span the departments of Rivas, Carazo and Managua.

This project was conceived in 2004 under Enrique José Bolaños Geyer, an engineer and the President of Nicaragua from January 10th, 2002 to January 10th, 2007.

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