Living in Nicaragua, Christmas shopping gives me a new outlook on the importance of shopping local. Buying local stimulates the economy, creates new jobs provided by local businesses, reduces the environmental impact, and nonprofits receive greater support. Although Nicaragua is still in its infancy in high-tech shopping online, there are a few websites devoted to selling their products from Nicaragua.
Enjoy the list I have compiled and Happy Local Shopping.
1. Masaya Market-Handmade Gifts One of the few websites where you can buy online.
2. Sexy and Sexy One of Nicaragua’s first online-only stores. Warning: This is an adult erotic supply website. Leave it to Nicaragua to develop a virtual sex shop as a way to help innovate the way the internet is used in Nicaragua.
3. Vidalife Granada This website focuses on shopping in Granada, Nicaragua. Check out the directory of services.
4. Una Buena Chica Nica A Facebook page displaying her fine local crafts in San Juan del Sur.
5. Empowerment International Give a gift of education for impoverished Nicaraguan children through this wonderful organization.
6. Nicaraguan Cultural Alliance a U.S.-based organization that works to support the arts and community development projects in Nicaragua.
7. Fabretto Fabretto’s mission is to empower children and their families in Nicaragua to reach their full potential and improve their livelihoods through education and nutrition.
8. Nica Nelly Purchasing pottery, hammocks, Nicaraguan coffee, and other crafts from NicaNelly directly benefits the artisans from Nicaragua who take pride in their craftsmanship.
9. La Esperanza Granada Give a gift of educational supplies that will last a lifetime.
10. Opportunity International Shop in the Ojala Store The Ojala brand represents the creativity and potential of Nicaraguan microentrepreneurs
In addition to these online stores and NGOs that support local craftsmen, below are a few resources from Melissa, an expat friend who has lived in Nicaragua for 10 years. Thanks Melissa for the pictures and contacts.
An awesome locally made eggnog, with or without rum. 8-404-1816 for info on where to get in Managua.
From Pesebres, hand-carved jicaro shells, and baby Jesus is in a cradle made from pine needles from Cusmapa, firstname.lastname@example.org
An early Christmas gift made using gorgeous woods by Crearte. Maria and Gerardo Gutierrez run the place and have a shop in Masaya. email@example.com
Again, happy local shopping this holiday season. If you have any additional links for Nicaraguan products, please add the link in a comment below.