Jicaro Island Ecolodge - Granada Isletas, Nicaragua
Private Casitas


Pack for a PurposeHarmony with nature and the local community were a key consideration in the development of Jicaro Island Ecolodge. The resort was built with minimum impact to the island and with very careful planning in terms of water supply, wastewater treatment and electricity usage. The team in charge of management of Jicaro has a 10 year track record of running ecolodges and sustainable hotels in Costa Rica and has brought this accumulated know how to Nicaragua. Just a few examples of how the hotel is sustainable. Jicaro Island Ecolodge is a member of the Cayuga Collection of Sustainable Luxury Hotel

  • Water is heated with solar panels for guest and kitchen use.
  • No air conditioning is installed on the island. Cross ventilation and ceiling fans create enough of a cooling effect to ensure guest comfort.
  • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. While there is a strong recycling program installed, the focus due to the island location is on reducing. Bring as little trash to the island as possible.
  • Wastewater is treated on the island with a treatment plant complying not only with Nicaraguan but internationally accepted standards.
  • Hiring of a local staff is essential to the success of the lodge. We want to spread the potential wealth that tourism brings to Nicaragua by hiring locals as employees, subcontracting services locally and buying and producing locally.
  • Use of organic and biodegradable soaps, cleaning detergents and spa products.
  • Chlorine free systems to clean water in the pool.
  • Energy efficient lighting and illumination throughout the island.
  • Underground electricity system that does not interfere with the surrounding wildlife.
  • And much more.

What is "sustainable tourism"?

"Sustainability, as a model for development, establishes the need to satisfy the requirements of today’s society without making it impossible for future generations to satisfy their own.” The development of a country cannot be achieved by the unrestrained exploitation of its resources--natural, cultural, social--to the point of eradicating or destroying them and at the same time seeking to fulfill the needs of the present population with food, housing, health and work.  These existing resources are the potential assets that future generations depend on to meet their needs.

For tourism, sustainability is not only a response to the demand factors of the industry; it is now an indispensable condition to be able to compete successfully in order to survive into the future.  The ever-deteriorating world ecological and social crises have had a significant impact on human consciousness and impacted the growth rate environmental tourism has experienced in the last decade; there are greater demands for changes and expectations by tourists.

Today’s tourists are seeking a more interactive tourism, with greater respect for the social-cultural and ecological interests of the local communities, higher standards of service, along with the ability to protect and regenerate the natural environment and local customs.  More and more hotels today are created to meet the demands of these “conservation tourists” and demonstrate their commitment to sustainability throughout their organization. To learn more about the management team that is in charge of the operations at Jicaro Island Ecolodge, please take a look at the Cayuga Collection’s Sustainabl e Practices.

Suggested Reading on Sustainability Topics

Environmental Protection and Stewardship in Nicaragua

Nicaragua’s political and economic histories, combined with frequent natural disasters, have caused it to lag behind in environmental stewardship and protection. During the Somoza regime, little thought was given to the environmental implications of industrial development and, as a result, many of Nicaragua’s lakes and rivers became polluted by pesticides, raw sewage and industrial waste. Current environmental issues facing Nicaragua include waste management, deforestation, soil erosion and water pollution.

Over the years, however, Nicaragua has made a concerted effort to revamp its environmental protection programs. Under the Sandinista government, extensive programs were put into place to restore and protect the environment. Additionally, with the help of worldwide organizations such as the United Nations and the World Bank, as well as nonprofit organizations and agencies, many are hopeful that Nicaragua will be able to restore maintain its rich natural beauty and resources.

Nicaragua has currently designated 76 different spots as protected areas, covering approximately 18% of total land within the country. Biologists consider Nicaragua to be an important biological corridor connecting large tracts of mountains, rainforests, volcanoes, beaches and reefs. It is home to a number of unique forms of wildlife, including monkeys, harpy eagles, sea turtles, American manatees, tapirs, woolly opossums, giant anteaters, Honduran fruit eating bats, and more.

Nicaragua’s most famous national parks and protected areas include:

Indio-Maìz Biological Reserve

Located in the southeast corner of the country and bordering the San Juan River, the Indio-Maiz Biological Reserve features lowland rain forest and contains a number of endangered species such jaguars and giant anteaters. It is also home to over 400 species of bird, four species of wild cat and over 200 species of reptiles.

Los Guatuzos Wildlife Refuge

Los Guatuzos Wildlife Refuge is located on the southern side of Lake Nicaragua and borders the San Juan River. It is one of the best spots for birdwatching and also features monkeys, sloths, caimans, iguanas and agoutis.

Mombacho Cloud Forest Reserve

The Mombacho Cloud Forest Reserve is situated at the base of the Mombacho Volcano. The reserve features more than 800 species of plant life, including bromeliads and orchids. The park has incredible trails and on a clear day you can see Granada, Lake Nicaragua and the Las Isletas Archipelago as you make your way around the volcano.

Chocoyero Nature Reserve

This nature reserve may be small but it is rich in wildlife. Its most notable creature is the chocoyo, which nests along the cliffs next to a tiny cascade. The park is largely tropical dry forest and has wonderfully diverse flora.

La Flor Wildlife Refuge

The La Flor Wildlife Refuge is a coastal sea turtle nesting sight where over 30,000 Olive Ridley Turtles come to nest each year. The refuge features beautiful beaches, tropical dry forest and mangrove swamps.

El Jaguar Cloud Forest Reserve

The El Jaguar Cloud Forest Reserve is also a privately owned forest reserve with an organic shade coffee farm. It features prehistoric ferns, giant oak trees, bromeliads, orchids and strangler figs.


According to National Geographic´s Center for Sustainable Destinations, “geotourism is defined as tourism that sustains or enhances the geographical character of a place—its environment, culture, aesthetics, heritage, and the well-being of its residents. Geotourism incorporates the concept of sustainable tourism—that destinations should remain unspoiled for future generations—while allowing for ways to protect a place's character. Geotourism also takes a principle from its ecotourism cousin,—that tourism revenue should promote conservation—and extends it to culture and history as well, that is, all distinctive assets of a place.”

Since its construction, Jicaro Island Ecolodge has worked diligently to become a geotourism destination by participating in the following activities:

  • Serving as an example of conservation and sustainable development in the surrounding community with the local community.
  • Providing guests with ample information about local culture and customs.
  • Basing its architectural design on the concepts of being low impact and culturally sensitive.
  • Incorporating local dishes, flavors and ingredients into its menu offerings.
  • Striving to achieve the highest levels of sustainability in its operations and architecture by installing technologies such as solar panels, non-chlorinated pool cleaning systems and more.

For more information on Geotourism, visit here.

Email. info@jicarolodge.com
Phone. (505) 2558-7702
(505) 2552-6353
1,000 Places to See Before You Die, the second edition Winner of the 2010 Global Vision Award for Environmental Leadership Travel+Leisure Winner of Conde Nast World Saver Award 2010
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