Bluefields, named for the Dutch pirate Abraham Blauvelt, is Nicaragua's principal Caribbean port. The city spent part of the 1700-1800's riddled with British and French colonists and today its inhabitants comprise a real melting pot: asian, black, indian, latino, white, and mixes of all of these. A sign near the airport claims a population of just about 46,000 people but Bluefields feels a lot bigger than that. Right now Bluefields is easily accessible by air or water. A road from the west was recently completed but I'm told it's not for the faint of heart.
I'm always surprised when I read things that downplay what Bluefields has to offer to residents and visitors alike: two universities; a growing young museum; a wide array of restaurants ranging from Chinese to an Italian place with linen tablecloths to the ubiquitous fast food chicken place with a kid's playroom; jewelry shops; street vendors and markets; a multitude of furniture, appliance, paint, hardware, and building supply stores that claim if they don't have in stock what you want they'll bring it in for you; carpentry and metal working shops; and more... Most of the businesses bear the names of their Nicaraguan owners but there are a lot of familiar names, like the Yamaha dealership, and Sherwin Williams and Radio Shack. In other words Bluefields is a typical city.
Below shows a few blocks in the center of the city. Upcoming posts will outline what's available at the lettered locations...a purely subjective selection I assure you.