A malecón is a jetty, but in Nicaragua it is more like a boardwalk and a port. The San Jorge port, where people make connections to Ometepe Island is undergoing a facelift.
When it is completed, it will be a hub of activity with shops, new docks for the ferries, a new parking lot, hotels, restaurants, and a ferry station. When we returned from Granada to San Jorge to catch the ferry home, colorful banners and hundreds of swimmers greeted us for the upcoming Semana Santa week (Easter week).
Freshly planted coconut trees lined the pavement and waved a greeting to the new arrivals.
Vendors hawked sunglasses galore.
Nicaragua’s commemoration of Holy Week comes at the hottest and driest time of the year and so, along with attending the religious services and processions that mark Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday, two million people visited bathing spots on the country’s ocean coasts, lakes, and rivers this Holy Week. The Health Ministry reported that 34 people drowned between Palm Sunday and Easter, more by far than last year’s ten deaths by drowning. Last year many people stayed home out of fear of tsunamis when the country was under alert because of a series of earth tremblers. In contrast, other deaths were down from 2014. Traffic deaths this year totaled 12, while 15 people were murdered, down from 20 and 16 respectively last year. Crime in general dropped 34% over last year, according to the National Police who had mobilized 13,000 officers to all the vacation spots and religious processions in the country.