What exactly is a "tropical island disclaimer" as noted on your home page?
We don't want anyone to be caught by surprise when they reach our little island and LCBB. We are NOT an air conditioned, 5 star (4, 3 or even 2 star) resort or restaurant with all of the comforts of home and your favorite local eatery. This is a remote tropical island that sometimes goes without power for up to 5 weeks (we do have a generator, actually we currently have 4, our primary large diesel is in Managua getting rebuilt, our secondary diesel backup has blown a head gasket twice (recently repaired and working well at this time) and we are now down to our 3rd back ups, one larger and two smaller gasoline generators.
We implore anyone considering travelling to LCI to become totally familiar with the magical yet potentially frustrating nature of traveling to a remote tropical island where the above factors and many more could potentially alter your original dream of seeing this beautiful little island. For example, LCI has no regular power, no mail service, no bank, ATM or Western Union, no reliable phone service, no reliable internet and almost everything is brought to the island in freighter which incurs large costs for any business here and means you will pay more for anything that you purchase from any business compared to the mainland.
A good example is a simple floor fan, the exact same fan you can purchase in the U.S. for $25US is sold in Managua for $75US. That price does not include tax (15%) the cost of getting it purchased, put on a truck to Rama (a river port), put on an ocean going freighter which 4 days later brings it to LCI (if you are lucky), taking it across the island in a wheelbarrow. If the freighter happens to have a bit of a leak in the hold and the fan gets wet and is ruined when it arrives at our hotel, too bad, order a new one and start the process again. These factors make the net cost around $100 (4x more than if it was bought in the USA). Worst part? Six months later the sea air will have ruined the fan and the process starts again. Please be aware that these costs and challenges happen with everything.
What you can expect is an eco-friendly resort on a wonderful remote tropical island that is doing its best to provide relative comfort, good service, good fresh food and drink and good value at a reasonable price.
Please be aware that maintaining our staffs high level of service means that we are on an on going basis reminding, training and teaching our staff about customer, hotel and restaurant service and all that it involves. We use every reasonable professional tool at our disposal to help them improve their skills at our resort. We even use fun games and contests for prizes.
If having a well trained, professional, courteous and friendly staff and the processes that need to be implemented to create such a staff is offensive to you, please consider staying elsewhere.
We know that you understand we have no control over mother nature, insects, panga captains, airlines, village generator, your trip planning, internet satelittes, etc. (though we would love to take credit when the weather is beautiful, there are no bugs and everything runs perfectly this "perfect storm convergence" acutally seldom happens).
Please realize also that when we confirm your reservation, we reserve that space for YOU! When others try to reserve your room we say no because we promised to keep that cabin available for your use. So, if something happens that prevents you from arriving on your scheduled date, or causes you to want to leave early you will be responsible for that cabin for the dates that we reserved it for you and turned down all other requests. Please be sure to read our cancel/refund policies and we strongly urge you to get "travel insurance" so you are protected financially from any unexpected events.
Our guests should also be aware, for example, that the trip from Big Corn Island to Little Corn Island is by commercial panga (an open boat) and sometimes can be very wet and rough. But also we want you to know that we have no control over the operation of the panga, the panga captains or the conditions in which it operates.
We urge you to read our “things to bring”. Examples of must haves (although not a complete list, please check out the list on our faqs page) are: flashlight, bug spray, battery operated alarm clock (we have no wake up service), sunblock and a raincoat. Another BIG must have is trip insurance. Inexpensive to procure, it makes any of travels little problems the insurance companies cost and not the travelers.
We seemingly face a million obstacles daily and strive to tackle each and every one of these challenges without you suspecting that they ever existed. Our goal is to treat every guest with the respect and courtesy they deserve and let them leave the worries to us. In short, we want you to remember our little island and our hotel with the desire to someday return.
Travel and Leisure mentioned Little Corn Beach and Bungalow on their website, did you see that?
We did and we are quite honored. We were selected along with 27 other hotels around the world as part of their "Best Affordable Island Hotels" group for 2013. You can check it out at, http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/best-affordable-island-hotels/12
Ok, so you have warned us about the OPEN panga ride that can be a bit rough/wet! Do you have any advice on how we might make the ride as comfortable as possible?
Well . . . while there is no fool proof plan, we can share with you what we do when we take the panga.
When you go from Big Corn Island (BCI) to Little Corn Island (LCI) you will mostly be traveling East. This usually takes you directly into the wind and the waves. If you want to stay the driest, ride in the middle near the bow (front) of the boat. But be aware, the front is the roughest ride (sometimes "rough" is an understatement). If you want to have the smoothest ride, ride in the stern (back) of the boat. But be aware, this is the wettest (and we mean "wet") place to be.
When we ride the panga from BCI to LCI we usually try to arrive early to the dock and select a seat either farther toward the bow (yet mid boat if we are more concerned about "dry") or a little closer to the stern (yet still mid boat if we are more concerned about a less rough ride). Remember, the captain of the panga has to take in to account ALL of the factors involved of driving the panga into the waves which means that sometimes the people in the bow get a huge bump and sometimes the people in the stern get very wet. Be safe and cover your bags with plastic bags and put important papers and devices in a zip lock bag. If this is not something that you think you can handle, you may want to consider changing your itinerary to not include LCI.
Outside Magazine's website called Little Corn Island (and Big Corn) one of the "7 Best Island Vacations" in the world! What makes the island so special?
The island is special to different folks for different reasons. Maybe because it is like visiting the Caribbean 50 years ago? You will have to come down to discover just what about this little island trips your trigger. Good news for Little Corn Beach and Bungalow is that Outside Magazine also linked directly to our Little Corn Hotel / Resort as a place to stay while you enjoy the island. Come see us!
CBS Survivor: San Juan Del Sur-Blood vs. Water for the 29th and 30th seasons is being filmed in Nicaragua to be shown in September 2014. Is Little Corn Beach and Bungalow and Little Corn Island any where near the set for the show?
While you will be on a remote tropical island, unfortunately, you will be a whole country away from the area that the Survivor will be filmed in. San Juan Del Sur - Blood vs. Water / Redemption Island is being filmed on the Pacific coast of Nicaragua in the San Juan Del Sur area. SJDR is on the west coast in the southern area of Nicaragua. We do have a cabin named after the show, "Survivor" though :)
Some of my best travel experiences have been at locales such as Paradise Island Bahamas and Cancun Mexico. Given that I really enjoy that type of travel destinations do you think I will like Little Corn Island?
It is hard to say. Maybe, maybe not. Little Corn Island is the antithesis of highly built up, very convenient vacations destinations. If you are looking to experience something totally different and are bringing along a patient attitude, you might find the difference refreshing. If you are coming expecting to have yet another experience at least similar to the above mentioned places you will probably not be happy about this vacation choice. Be sure to read our whole FAQs page and do some research on the internet to help you decide of the Corn Islands (especially Little Corn) experience is for you and your family.
Travel and Leisure mentioned Little Corn Beach and Bungalow as one of the 27 "best affordable beach hotels in the world" in 2013. Why did they choose LCBB as one of only 27?
We really don't know but we are certainly honored :)
Did I read somewhere that Little Corn Island, Big Corn Island and Little Corn Beach and Bungalow were in the New York Times #1 best seller, 1000 Places To See Before You Die?
The new edition of "1000 Places To See Before You Die" made 200 changes from the last edition. One of the new additions was Nicaragua in general but also Little Corn Island and Big Corn Island. We are excited to have our own little paradise included. The popular travel book also reccommends Arenas Beach Hotel on Big Corn as "the" place to stay there and our own Little Corn Beach and Bungalow (LCB&B) as "the" place to stay on Little Corn Island.
"I like to eat healthy, what kind of options do you have at the Turned Turtle Restaurant?"
We seem to have a few people that have made comments that our food is not very healthy. We are not sure where they get this impression.
None of our food (accept fries, onion rings and our fresh corn chips) are fried, all of our food is grilled. Breakfast options include fruit plates and cups, pancakes, yogurt with fruit and granola and eggs served a number of ways and our house made rice and beans and frijoles. We offer fruit smoothies all day long. Lunch offers a choice of salad or fruit if fries or onion rings are not your style and our menu inlcudes fish tacos made with fresh locally caught fish, cashew pesto, 2 bean arugula hummus and grilled sandwiches. We have a daily lunch special too that is grilled fresh fish, vegetables and salad, delicious and good for you! At dinner we offer grass fed filet mignon (250 cal., 52 g of protien and only 2 g of saturated fat), fresh snapper (110 cal., 1.5 g of fat, 23 g protien), chicken breast (144 cal., 22 g protien, 5 g fat), fresh shrimp and lobster and all of these choices are grilled, not fried.
Almost all the food we serve is non processed food. We serve regionally sourced vegetables with every dinner (fresh broccoli, cualiflower, wasabi green beans, spinach, etc.) along with a salad or healthy soup and regularly feature an arugula hummus, cashew pesto or Red Beet Ravioli starter.
Our parmesan crusting used on some fish and chicken dishes is basically parmesan cheese and seasonings. We add only enough salt to flavor the food, we leave adding more to our guests taste.
And of course you can feel free to skip the dessert that is included with every meal if you care to.
We do make daily our delicious sauces with real butter but instead of dairy cream we us coconut milk and you can certainly order the sauces on the side if you wish or just request "no sauce".
If you are a vegitarian, our lunch (including a vegan friendly vegitarian burger) and dinner menu offers over 20 different options to satisfy those so pre-disposed. Our dinner menu always has a 2 nightly vegitarian options and a 3rd different "special" that rotates in each night.
One thought though, if you are a vegan the choices not only at our restaurant but around the island become pretty limited.
Gluten or Dairy free? We have seperate lunch and breakfast menus for our guests that need to watch that part of their diet. Many of our dinner options can be selected to comply with those limitations too.
We serve up what we think is a pretty dynamic menu, made with great care and love, prepared amazingly healthy and fresh every day. We hope with fast service and very tasty too! You can see our menu on the Turned Turtle Restaurant page here on our site.
I am alergic to gluten and dairy. Does the Turned Turtle Restaurant have any options for me?
We have over 20 choices for vegitarians on our menu, but unfortunately, our selection for "gluten free" and "dairy intollerant" folks is a lot more limited. We do however have a special breakfast and lunch menu for folks with these dietary limitations. And, with careful selection believe that many of our dinner options can be tweaked to satisfy those concerns as well.
Not all but most of our recipes use dairy products or products made from wheat. We make all of our sauces and some dishes fresh daily and because of this it is a real challenge to alter a recipe for an individual serving.
Our wait staff is not overly familiar (although they try to learn as much as they can) with what goes in to our recipes. Our kitchen staff use that time honored tradition of doing the same thing over and over again and doing it very well. We do however have an ongoing training program in these regards and are seeing gradual improvement in our staffs ability to understand these special needs and respond appropriately.
Small changes believe it or not can really have a negative impact on the whole paradigm and every diners experience.
We now have a seperate menu for Dairy Intolerant and Gluten Free diners at breakfast and lunch. Each menu features up to 10 items that fit the bill. Be sure to ask for it when you dine with us.
At dinner our main courses include our grilled fresh fish, steamed fresh lobster (don't use the garlic butter dipping sauce if you are dairy intolerant), Dry Rubbed Baby Back ribs, Thick cut grilled Filet Mignon, Fresh grilled shrimp and our grilled breast of chicken (shrimp and chicken without the sauce) as our non dairy, non gluten options. The other part of dinner is that all of our meals are four plate meals, starter, soup or salad and dessert and a good number of those items are made with dairy or wheat flour. Be sure to alert our staff and they will do the best they cant to stear you in the right direction.
The price of your meal does not change with requested ommissions. You can however substitute something you omit with an equally priced side or order additional food off the "sides" menu at the regular price.
Please be empathetic too when you are sharing your special dietery needs with our staff as they have never been faced with not only the concept of allergies to these foods but have no previous life experience with what "gluten" or "dairy" allergies are. We guarantee that they will do their best and we teach then to get a manager to help them with your needs. Again, we train continually to help educate or staff on these and other unfamiliar (to them) circumstances.
Overall, for these types of allergies there may or may not be better choices on the island for most of your dining. We would especially warn our hotel guest that our RADDeal may not be for them with these kind of dietary restrictions.
We are trying to decide what type of cabin to reserve for our stay at Little Corn Beach and Bungalow. Can you help me determine what would be best for us?
We have four styles of cabins. In order from our "nicest" to our more basic the style design names are "Master Suite Gulliver (MSG"), "Master Suite Crusoe (MSC"), "regular Crusoe (RC)" and "Bunkhouse 1 and 2 (BH1-BH2)". Each cabin (accept for the BH cabins) are named for famous shipwrecks or references to being isolated. We have "Gulliver" for instance which refers to "Gullivers Travels", "Robinson" (Swiss Family Robinson), Survivor (after CBS, Survivor: San Juan Del Sur - Blood vs. Water), Shackleton (Ernest Shackleton and Endurance), Wilson (the volley ball in the movie Castaway), Selkirk (the original Robinson Crusoe that the novel was written after) and of course there is "Gilligan" (after what might possibly be the most famous shipwreck of all time, Gilligans Island).
Find out all the details (# of beds etc.) about each of our cabins by going to our "Accommodations" page where you will see interior pictures too. You can look at our prices on our "Rates" page. Don't forget to look over our RADDeal on our "Rates" page (below the rates) that affords among it's many other benefits up to a 15% discount on the cabin rate.
We booked a little late and because of that, we are going to have to move from one cabin to the other while we stay with you. How much trouble is that going to be?
We hope not much. We do most of the work and our cleaning staff is really good. When they need help to get things done in a timely fashion, even the managers and owners assist in cleaning the rooms so our guests can get into their new accommodation as quickly as possible.
We do however ask that anyone moving to a new cabin have their bags packed and be ready to vacate their current cabin by 8:30 AM. There will be a note placed in your cabin the day before your move to remind you of the change. Here is a sample of that note:
ALL ABOUT YOUR CABIN MOVE TOMORROW
You are scheduled for a move to another cabin as was originally noted in your reservation tomorrow morning.
"Free Wi Fi", what exactly do you mean by that?
We do offer free wi fi and as far as we know we are the only hotel on LCI that offers on deck availability. Due to the fact that we are on the remote eastern shore of LCI, the only viable alternative for internet service is via satellite. Most guests do not realize that this service is only available at a very high cost (we currently pay $425 a month for the service) that none the less offers relatively slow and unreliable service (by typical north american standards). Bandwidth availability is also extremely limited.
Because of these factors it is necessary to manage our internet much more actively than most folks are used to. We have limited hours of availability (typically from around 12 noon to 9 pm), periods of no service at all (the service was down for over 3 months recently) and we ask our guests help in preserving the available bandwidth. Over use of our allotted bandwidth can mean a suspension of service for up to 48 hours (no available internet at all). Since we promised all available internet to you our guest we ask for your cooperation in not streaming movies or downloading huge files. We know this is not what most people are used to when it comes to internet in the 21st century (the good news though is that you are on a tropical island that feels like the Caribbean 50 years ago) and for your help and understanding we appreciate your patience.
We expecially want you to be aware that there may be times (we have gone up to 3 months without internet) that there will be no internet available.
Did I read somewhere that the Turned Turtle Restaurant actually charges for a glass of water? What is up with that?
Village water from the tap is free but we do not highly reccommend that you drink it.
If you are dining with us, you get a complimentary bottle of purified water with your meal (refils are only $1).
Little Corn beach and Bungalow has created a unique program to the island which we call our "Purified Water Refill Program". Available to any island visitor or resident our program saves the visitor cash and the island some bothersome trash by attempting to encourage people to keep their water bottle and refill it with our purified water for a charge less than buying a new bottle.
MIT (yep, Massachusetts Institue of Technology) while surveying the serious problem of water bottle refuse on the island noted that our trash contained over 70% less water bottle trash than other island business. We attribute this to our "Refill program".
If you would like a glass of purified water we serve 16 ounces at a nominal charge (currently 25 cents). The alternative at other places on the island is to buy a small plastic bottle of purified water for $1, you spend more and leave behind more plastic trash when this happens. The proceeds from our program go to fund our island projects like our free spay and nueter clinics, beach cleanup programs, recycling and trash removal, reading house construction, etc..
Ok, so I have seen a couple comments on the internet about "tipping" at LCBB. What is all that about and what about tipping in general in Nicaragua?
Wow, who could have known how volatile a topic this is for some of our guests. At LCBB we make a point to let every guest know that tipping is TOTALLY VOLUNTARY at our resort! It is not added in to your bill in any way.
But . . . should our guest decide that they would like to tip our hard working all Nicaraguan staff we respectfully ask that they do so at the end of their stay and leave their tip with the managers or owners. We also inform them that 100% of that tip is distributed to ALL of our employees (night watchman, maids, cooks, waiters, gardeners, laundry gals, we currently have 28 of them). After over 5 years of running a reasonably functional resort on a small tropical island in a third world country we have come to the conclussion that hotel guests that tip our staff individually cause so many behind the scenes problems such as, jealousy, laziness, inappropriate comments, lying to guests, theft (on this one, if we don't know how they got that "tip", shoes, money, whatever, they can say "they gave it to me" when they may have actually stolen something) destruction of the "team work" mentality, that this practice is actually desctructive to our employees ability to retain their job. Some have become so motivated to capture a "personal" tip that they have actually put themselves in physical jeapordy and/or caused the remaining staff to recieve nothing while they were personally handsomely enriched.
We pay excellent wages, provide a good work environment and good benefits to our employees. What we do is use the tips you leave as an awareness tool for each and every one of our employees. They all receive a nearly equal portions, but some receive a bit more and others a bit less based on their "level of customer service" in the previous pay period. "Customer service" entails many things, team work, on time arrival for work, smiling at customers, greeting customers, fulfilling their positions duties, working well with others, etc.. They are told why they recieved the share that they did and how they can increase their share in future pay periods.
It is seems easy and appropriate to apply the standards of tipping and compensation that we all understand from where we are from (we certainly did for a while). But there is no substitute for experience when it comes to finding the best solution for this dillema on our little island.
If you stay with us, we humbly ask that you accept our recommendation so that the tip you leave behind goes to creating a better life for our employees as you intended as opposed to the potential chaos you may leave behind as we are sure you did not intend.
Most businesses in Nicaragua add a "propina voluntaria" (voluntary tip). It is added in to your bill and you have the option to "opt out". This is usually 10 to 15%. We do not add any tip, tipping at LCBB is totally voluntary.
Is LCBB ever closed during the year?
We do close seasonally from around Sep. 13 to Nov. 17 as it can be very rainy on the island at that time.
What should I bring to Little Corn Island?
Things to bring :
•Bug spray (you will be visiting a tropical island, staying at a resort on the beach that is surrounded by jungle, there ARE bugs, we do all we can to mitigate them but they are innumerable and persistent)
What can you tell me about the weather?
First and foremost, weather is hard to predict especially here on the Corn Islands.
But generally speaking, Oct. - Nov. is the rainiest part of the year, in Oct. especially you can go for a couple days with constant rain. Dec. to Feb. you see generally improving weather. The further from Oct. - Nov. the better the weather gets. Mar. to June or so are typically dry and mild. June to Aug. is a slightly wetter time where a drenching 20 minute rain shower followed by blue skies is not uncommon. During this time you might also see towering thunderstorms. Sept. is Little Corn Islands secret month (typically), beautiful weather and the island to your self makes it (in our opinion) the best month to be here. LCB&B is closed from mid Sept. to mid Nov..
To the best of our knowledge, there are no weather stations on the Corn Islands. So when you look at internet weather sites, you are probably looking at weather predicitions for Bluefields which is on the coast and has dramatically different weather patterns than the islands that are 50 miles away and in the middle of the sea.
How do I arrange for one of your staff to meet us at the LCI dock?
If you take one of the regularly scheduled panga's (typically departing BCI at 10:00am and 4:30pm each day) and have let us know which panga you will be arriving upon, you will be met by one of our staff holding an "LCBB" sign with a member of your parties name upon it.
However, if you have not let us know when you are arriving, or if you take a non commercial or not regularly scheduled panga we will not know when or where you will be arriving and will be unable to meet you. In that event, there will be "chamba" (piece labor) people at the dock that you can negotiate a price with to bring you to our place (for 2 people, about $5 is a fair price).
Wow, I read somewhere that your check out time is 9:30am. Why so early!?
We agree, it does seem a bit early. But here is our dilema. We want the people checking out to have the maximum time in their cabin before they leave. But, if you read about the panga ride elsewhere on this page you have seen that our incoming guests arrive around 10:30am. Not only do those newly arrivng guests expect their cabin to be ready when they arrive (even though official check in time is 12:00), but they often show up wet or frazzled from the very nature of that boat ride. So, we want to have their accommodation ready for them as quickly as possible so they can change clothes and/or relax.
We also strive to provide the cleanest possible accommodations which means that it can take up to 1 1/2 hours to clean a private cabin. But remember, we will treat you as an arriving guest with exactly the same respect as we treated the people that arrived before you and are having to check out by 9:30.
Your patience and understanding is appreciated as this is a very difficult situation that we have to deal with daily.
Can we get a "wake up call"?
Unfortunately, because we do not have a 24 hour desk, nor a telephone system we are unable to provide a "wake up call". You may want to bring a battery (or wind up) operated alarm clock if you need to be up at a certain time.
What time is "check in"?
The "official" check in time is 12:00 noon. But we always do our best to get our arriving guests to their properly cleaned and prepared room in as quickly as possible. Your comfort is our number one goal. We appreciate your patience.
May I have a late check out?
When you arrived to LCBB we did everything in our power to have your cabin ready for when you arrived (even though check in time is 12:00 noon). We did not know if you would be tired from your trip, wet from the panga ride or just ready to have a roof over your head but we do know that most people want to get to their cabin as soon as possible. In order to increase the probability of having your room ready for you, we had to make sure the people that were in your cabin prior to your arrival were checked out by 9:30am.
This means that late check outs are not available. The only LCBB employees that are authorized to arrange late check out should one be available is the General Manger or one of the owners. We are sorry that we can not be more flexible in this but we want to respect the folks arriving needs just as we did yours.
Tell me a little about your RADDeal package? I am trying to figure out if it is the right option for me.
Our goal as a resort with the RADDeal package is to give guests that choose to spend a little more time at our resort as opposed to spending most of their time moving about the island a better value for their stay.
On of the best benefits of the RADDeal is that among all the other things offered is it also affords up to a 15% discount on your cabin rate.
If you like to try a different restuarant for every meal or plan to spend your entire trip diving (although "fun dives" at Dolphin Dive are discounted 10% with the package) then the package is probably not for you.
On the other hand if you have looked at our menu (restaurant page) think our food and drink look good and would like to get a discount (our RADDeal guests typically enjoy a significant discount over purchasing a la carte) on all the things included in our package (see package details on our "rates" page) then this may be just right for you.
A couple recent examples of actual guests one took the RADDeal package, one did not. Couple "A" took the package and after their stay realized a 9.6% overall savings as compared to if they had purchased a la carte. Individual "B" whom did not take the package but really enjoyed our food spent $277 with us and if they had utilized the D and A package would have only paid $220 a savings of $57 or 20.5% (this individual only drank 5 beers). If you like beer, massage, yoga, kayaking, snorkeling, diving, etc. your savings will be on the higher end.
We recently enhanced the benefits of the RADDeal package to include an 15% discount on any purchases that were not otherwise discounted or included in the package. This means that EVERYTHING is cheaper for our guests that select the package.
RADDeal guests help keep us on our toes too. We strive to provide a quality experience in all ways (food, accommodation and service) so our loyal guests will never feel disappointed.
Your email with our reservation confirmation recommended "trip insurance". What is that and where can I find it?
Trip insurance is a relatively inexpensive way to make sure that lifes (or travels) little mishaps are covered by a third party (the insurer) so that you don't have to pay the price should something unexpected happen, such as flight canelations, baggage loss, illness, weather etc.. You can even choose a carrier or plan that will pay for a charter jet to take you to your home in the case of medical emergency (there is no hospital to speak of in the Corn Islands). It is suprisingly inexpensive and worth looking in to. Google "trip insurance" and look for an online "broker" that will have a myriad of choices to consider.
I have e-mailed my reservation request and have not heard back from you. How often do you check your e-mails and what should I do?
We strive to answer reservation requests daily, whether we have availability or not. We respond with a "subject" line of "Little Corn BB" to help you see our response. If you would like, you can call us at our Restaurant/Bar phone, 011.505.8.333.0956 to verbally inquire or check your "junk" mail in search of our earlier response.
Do you need/have air conditioning?
LCBB is on the breezy side of the island. Typically, nature does the A/C for us. Get ready for disclaimer now. It is almost always 82 degrees F on LCI. When it is unusually calm, or electricity is off (electricity is typically is available from 2:00pm to 5:00 am, and village power has been know to go down for weeks at a time) the island can be hot, especially if you are sensitive to heat and/or humidity. Our bungalows were actually designed to maximize air flow, BUT, when the right (or wrong depending how you look at it :)) conditions exist certain bungalows at certain times can seem warmer than the ambient air temperature. On an on going basis we are improving things by increasing natural ventilation, altering design and adding floor and ceiling fans (in some bungalows). BUT IF YOU NEED AIR CONDITIONING, their is one hotel on the island that offers air conditioning during periods of electricity. We will happily refer you to that hotel. Master Suite Gulliver and Master Suite Crusoe style bungalows now offer rechargable power which keeps the fans running for a period of time after the village power goes off which allows for a more comfortable complete nights sleep (see question below). If A/C is a major factor that makes your vacation pleasurable, please inquire with us and we will refer you to a hotel that offers A/C.
Did I read that some cabins have fans that run beyond the time that power goes off at approximately 5:00AM?
You may have. Recently, we have added rechargable power to our hotel electricity availability. Due to the limited nature of this change, only certain bungalows currently take advantage of this new addition. Reserving our best cabins, Master Suite Gulliver or a Master Suite Crusoe means that your bungalow is connected to the rechargable power source. This means that while Crusoe and Bunkhouse fans and lights go off around 5 am due to village power going off, these suites will have power for the individual bed fans as well at the light in the bathroom and the loft light. So . . . if sleeping beyond 5 am in relative comfort is important to you, consider a Master Suite Gulliver or a Master Suite Crusoe bungalow.
Is there 24 hour electricity?
The island power is typically available from 2:00 pm to 5:00 am (although there has been times when the village generator has been down for up to five weeks). LCB&B has a backup generator (5 actually, see tropical island disclaimer above), we have the ability to provide our own power for at least a portion of the time. There are and will be times the village power will go down without warning, when it does it usually happens at night. This means that your fans and lights will not function (unless you have had the forsight to reserve a Master Suite Gulliver or a Master Suite Crusoe style cabin, and even then on rare times that will not be available, see tropical island disclaimer above). Generally electricity is available at LCB&B from 2:00 am to 5:00am. Read our "Do you need air conditioning", and "Do some bungalows have power available when there is no village power" questions above.
What type of plug in do we need?
All of Nicaragua, inluding Little Corn Island uses the standard plug used in the United States.
Can I use my hair dryer/blow dryer?
You can use your blow dryer, but only while village power is being utilized. Hard to believe but a simple blow dryer uses a BOATLOAD of electricity. Sometimes, we have power available but if it is from our generator (which is hefty but not big enough to power a bunch (or even one) of blow dryers) at those times you will be asked to postpone the use of your dryer. If you do bring your blow dryer please use it sparingly and at the right time (when village power is being utilized).
Do you have ice available?
Ice is typically available at LCB&B. It is made with purified water that is safe to drink. Unfortunately, ice is also a very expensive commoditiy to have on hand.
Many factors make this so: Island power is only running about 12 to 15 hours a day. We make all of our ice with a small ice maker and ice cube trays.
We provide complimentary ice with mixed drinks and alcohol drinks purchased through our bar. BUT, if we offer ice for any other purpose, it is at a small charge. Or, if ice is in very scarce supply we only offer ice for drinks purchased in the bar that normally get ice included. We hope you understand.
Why don't you use solar or wind power.
We do! We have 1.6 kilowatts of solar panels mounted to the restaurant roof and 4 banks of 4 each 200amp hour batteries to store the power generated by our panels. Unfortunately, and this comes as a surprise to many of our guests, it is not always sunny on LCI :(
Due to the nature of wind power we have opted to not attempt to utilize this form of renewable energy at this time.
Can I spend my US dollars there?
Yes, US dollars and Nicaraguan Cordobas are both legal tender. If you bring US dollars be sure that the have no rips, tears, tape or marks on them so they will be accepted. Only Cordobas or US money (with no rips, tears, writing, marks or ink stains) are acceptable on the islands. We accept any size bill from our hotel guests to pay their hotel bill. But, we reccomend for spending money around the island that you bring some $10 and $20 dollar bills. There is no bank or ATM on LCI and change is a hard thing to find here.
Do you accept credit cards, travellers checks or personal checks?
LCBB is one of the places on the island that accepts Visa and Mastercard. We accept charge cards from hotel guests only (a 10% convenience fee is applied to any charges for the required confirmation deposit, if you choose to charge on a Credit Card at the end of your stay the convenience fee is 12%).
Our credit card transactions are routed through the U.S.. This means that the payment you make with a card has to find its way back to Little Corn Island Nicaragua which has no mail service, ATM, Western Union and no bank! LCBB has to get the money collected through CC transactions back to Little Corn to pay our employees, buy supplies and purchase other goods and services needed to run the resort. This is an expensive proposition and we apologize for the fee. To avoid this hefty fee consider bringing cash for the balance of your stay. We are unaware of any bank in Nicaragua that accepts travellers checks and for that reason, we can not either.
There are a few other mostly Nicaraguan owned businesses on the island that accept credit cards and typically their convenience fee charges are around 6 to 8 %.
We only accept personal checks mailed to our U.S. address from North American guests for the confirmation deposit. We do not accept checks here on the island as no Nicaraguan bank would honor them.
Is there a bank or ATM on Little Corn?
No. Be sure to bring all of the cash you will need for your stay. There is however a Western Union, Banpro and an ATM (occasionally out of money) on Big Corn. Consider bringing some $10 and $20's for spending around the island. Our resort accepts any size bills to pay your final bill.
Is the island safe?
Little Corn is a close knit community. Relatively speaking it is very safe. Rarely does anyone feel threatened on the island. But be aware that just because you may be on a tropical island paradise, there is still a few bad apples that given the opportunity may make your visit to Little Corn Island memorable for all the wrong reasons.
For this reason, We recommend that our guest always use practices that promote safe travel.
While you are here, take advantage of getting to know the local folks who are generally kind and friendly. But do be careful about who you choose to get to close to. If you are hanging out with the local party crowd, be aware that most criminal instances are related to the activities that sometimes accompany such revelry.
We strongly reccommend that our guests (and anyone visiting LCI) avoid the more nefarious side of caribbean life and stay away from illegal drugs of any sort. The folks you deal with for those items are more than likely the few bad apples (and because it is illegal, it might be you that ends up in Nicaraguan jail).
Please be sure to read our "Island and LCBB safety" portion of our in cabin "Island and Resort" guide for more info on island safety.
Where can I find more information about The Corn Islands, Little Corn Beach and Bungalow and Nicaragua?
Visit these links to learn more about all three:
What happens if I want to stay longer than originally planned?
Not surprisingly, this happens a lot. If you wish to extend your stay beyond your reservations we will do everything we can to accommodate your needs. We can even help to change plane reservations etc.
Are there other places to eat on the island then your restaurant the “Turned Turtle”?
Most definitely yes! We can recommend some nice places to eat around the island. One thing though, the service can be more laid back than ours, so you will want to go an hour before hungry typically.
Can I rent snorkel equipment on the island?
Yes. LCBB has some for rent and if we are out, we can send you to others that rent equipment as well.
Where are you located on the island?
Can I snorkel to the reef from the beach?
Yes. The reef stretches about half way around the island on the East and North end. The inside of the reef is anywhere from 150 to 200 yards off the beach (as it is in front of LCBB) to as close as 50 yards at other locations. However, there is Tarpon Channel, an opening in the reef directly off shore from LCB&B. We suggest that you be aware of this and plan your snorkeling accordingly. Typically, it is safe to swim and snorkel right off the beach, but please use your personal knowledge about your swimming abilities and comfort levels to determine when, where and if you go snorkeling.
Are there any stores on the island to buy snacks?
The island has a few small tienda's with a limited (by North American standards) food, clothing and medicinal items.
When I leave LCBB for my flight off of Big Corn, do I need to leave Little Corn the night before, and spend the night on Big Corn?
While anything can happen, we never have missed a plane by taking the morning panga to Big Corn the morning of our flight. The panga schedule coordinates with flight schedules, so enjoy another night on Little Corn, you will be glad you did.
What is there to do on Little Corn?
What's the diving like?
Will I be bored?
We hear this question a lot. Most people (there are some exceptions) arrive on the islands and after staying their planed time, end up either wishing they could, or actually change their plans to stay longer.
I think we mentioned this is an enchanting island.
Are the Nicaraguan people friendly?
What vaccines should we have before we come to Nicaragua or Little Corn?
Recommended Vaccines for Nicaragua by the Center of Disease Control:
Hepatitis A or immune globulin (IG).
Hepatitis B - if you are exposed to blood (for example, health-care workers), have sexual contact with the local population, stay longer than 6 months, or are undergoing various medical treatments.
Rabies - if you are in contact to wild or domestic animals through your work or recreation.
Typhoid - particularly if you are visiting developing countries in this region. As needed, booster doses for tetanus-diphtheria and measles. The Hepatitis B vaccine is now recommended for all infants and for children ages 11 and 12 who did not receive it as infants
What are your “check in” and “check out” times?
Check out time is generally 9:30am. Check in just depends on when you arrive and if your casita is ready. For RADDeal guests we will be as flexible as we can be. Worst case scenario, if you arrive and your casita is not ready, we will be happy to watch your luggage while you go off to explore the island or take a nap in one of our custom made hammocks.
Check in time is 12:00 noon. We go to great lengths though to try to make your cabin available for you when you arrive.
Is Little Corn suitable for children?
LCI is a small island and a relatively safe place. It is important to remember that the Panga ride from Big Corn is in an open skiff over 8 miles of ocean and that while you are here at the resort, the ocean is just steps away. Also, some of our accommodations have bedrooms accessed by navy style bamboo ladders. If you feel uncomfortable with that for your children be sure to book a bungalow with all the beds on the first floor. So if all that doesn’t worry you, bringing children 6 and over may not be a problem.
We have had children of all ages (6 months to 85 years) and we believe almost without exception, they have enjoyed Little Corn Island.
We have had more and more families coming with kids as we go along and they seem to love their LCI experience!
When is the “rainy” season:
October and November are the rainiest months on the island. September is our little secret month. It is usually a great month to be on the island. December, January and February are months that you will see the occasional tropical downpour and breezy weather. While some times, you may not see rain or wind for a week.
March through May are probably the driest months. June, July and August seem to be somewhat like December through February.
Keep in mind, if it was easy to predict the weather, we would all be prognosticators. So, bring an umbrella or a rain jacket and enjoy LCI no matter what the weather. If you do get a rainy day or two, our bar has a nice enclosed reading and game area where you can while away the hours.
BONUS REASON: (see “This is Spinal Tap” the movie.)
Note from the owners: We appreciate our clients understanding when it comes to our remote location and the challenges it presents. But we want everyone who comes to visit us to know, we are going to do our best because “you are the reason that we are open”.
Are there any independent opinions about LCBB available?
Visit this site for another reviewers opinion: http://rightsideguide.com/little-corn-island-page/places-fah-stay-in-little-corn-island/
Safe travels and see you when you “reach”.