Follow the Rama Carretera east out of Managua.
All of the bus routes to and from Juigalpa can be found at Mercado Mayoreo in Managua. Juigalpa is approximately three hours by bus in an ordinary route and two hours in an express bus. There are also charter helicopters available from Managua as well. Taxi cabs are the predominate means of transportation within the city.
Taxi Cabs are the predominate means of transportation within the city. Taxis within the city limits cost C$10 per person. Costs increase for places outside the concentrated part of the city.
There are also several bus routes that cost C$3 per person.
There are three well-maintained parks within the city. Parque Central, Parque Palo Solo and Parque Ruben Dario. Juigalpa also features the Thomas Belt Zoo, with a rather impressive selection of animals considering the size of the community. There is also the Gregorio Aguilar Barea Museum in Juigalpa featuring several stone carvings and other artifacts found in the Amerrisque Mountains. Many of these artifacts are from the Chontal natives. Cinema Popular is a movie theater located one block west of the central park.
Come for the patron saint festival. The patron saint celebrations on the week of August 15 celebrate the Assumption of Mary. This patron saint festival is renowned as one of the best in Central America, drawing people from neighboring countries. Much of this celebration takes place in the Plaza de Toros near the center of town. Here the highlighted event is bull riding. On average five people die every year from bull related injuries. As a result, there is a saying in Juigalpa, “It is not a good patron saint festival if nobody dies”. There are two fairs during the patron saint festival. One is put on by the mayor’s office in the center of town. The other, and larger of the two, is organized by a microfinance NGO, PRODESA, and takes place in the PRODESA fairgrounds located on the western side of town. Plaza Taurina de Chontales, located on the north end of town, has a rodeo every middle weekend of the month. The design of this arena was inspired by the rodeo arena in Houston, Texas.
There are two markets in town. One is the municipal market in the center of town, east of the central park. The other market “Mercado Nuevo” is located along the Rama Carretera at the southern end of town near the hospital.
La Embajada is located 100 meters west and 200 meters south of the Esso gas station. Meat is sold by the pound (2 pound minimum) and a proportionate amount of avocado, cuajada, tortilla, and onion salad is included. The recipe for the marinade has been passed down for generations.
La Quinta is located along the Carretera on the southern side of town and serves many typical Nicaraguan platters in a clean atmosphere with decent service.
Pollos La Toya is located 200 meters east of the cemetery’s east entrance. It is famed for its “Pollo Asado con Chile” (grilled chicken with chile).
Restaurante 7/24 can be found one block east of the central park and has a menu that includes Chinese, Italian, fast and seafood.
Restaurante Palo Solo is located in Palo Solo Park and serves many typical Nicaraguan platters but with more creative modifications.
Juigalpa is also home to the only beef jerky producer in Central America. Casey Welch’s Carne Seca can be found at Esso and Texaco.
Juigalpa has three discotecas:
Café Iguana is a two story complex with a pool and wet bar located on the western part of town.
Hotter’s (Caracoles Negros) is a discoteca on the northern end of town along the Rama Carretera. It is most popular on Thursday nights (Ladies’ Night).
La Quinta is located along the Rama Carretera on the southern part of town. It is most popular on Saturday nights and occasionally features a mechanical bull (especially during the Fiesta Patronale)
There are a few popular bars as well:
Bar 7/24 one block east of the park has the largest selection of liquor in Juigalpa. It is a good place to go with some friends. They offer beer bucket promotions on Wednesday nights.
El Coral located half a block east of the gas station PetroNic, is another good bar that is especially busy on Wednesday nights.
Restaurante Tacho on the Rama Carretera in front of the Esso gas station is open all night and often features mariachi bands.
Casa Country in Juigalpa located one block west of Palo Solo Park. It features unique architecture, internet and 24 hour service.
Hospedaje Nueve Milenio is available for budget accommodations near the municipal market.
Hotel Quintanilla is located in the western part of town along the street leaving for Puerto Diaz. It includes private parking and breakfast.
Hotel La Quinta offers simple, yet air conditioned rooms and is connected to a restaurant and discoteca.
Las Miradas is a boutique hotel with many amenities. There is air conditioning, internet in all of the rooms, gym, spa, and an excellent view of the Amerrisque Mountains. The price is about $50 per night.
It is recommended to take care if walking at night in Nicaraguan cities, including Juigalpa. It is better to stay in groups or take taxis from one destination to another. There is an increasing amount of violence cased by groups of delinquents due to a rising crack cocaine problem. Avoid the barrios on the northern end of town. Also, avoid unpaved streets as these are typically poor neighborhoods outside the center that are not as well patrolled by the police.
You can leave through the domestic bus routes from the municipal market or catch any bus heading north to Managua on the Rama Carretera.