The Gulf of Fonseca
El Salvador and Nicaragua are two very different countries in almost every sense. El Salvador is characterized by its mountainous green landscape and Nicaragua by its partly flat landscape with rising volcanoes and crater lakes. Each country has its own charm and both are well worth visiting. For years you could only travel between these two countries by a long bus trip (via Honduras), and consequently four borders posts, where the formalities can take up hours. For each border crossing.
Crossing the border by boat is an perfect and unique way to experience Nicaragua and El Salvador. The fringes of this fertile volcanic landscape are indented by a seemingly endless series of winding lagoons. As of yet this path is largely untraveled by tourists and still has its unpolished charm. Nicaragua’s coastline is covered with thick vegetation and towering from behind is the Cosigüina Volcano. From the boat you can observe the fishermen as they take their nets to the water in a fishing boat (locally named as lancha's). The coastline of El Salvador and Honduras is marked by several smaller islands as well as tall mountains covered by green vegetation. The houses belonging to the small fishing communities seemingly climb up the sides of the mountains.
Traveling by boat is not only more scenic, it is also faster than traveling by land. If you are looking to experience a truly amazing journey, and off the beaten path, then you should cross the Gulf of Fonseca with Ruta del Golfo, your adventure outfitter.
Interesting facts about The Gulf of Fonseca
- The Gulf of Fonseca covers an area of approximately 3,200 square kilometres, with a coastline that extends for 261 kilometres.
- The climate in the Gulf is typical of tropical and subtropical regions, with two distinct seasons, the rainy and the dry.
- Temperatures in the Gulf average between 25 and 30 °C; March and April are the warmest months and November and December the coolest. Relative humidity varies between 65 and 86% depending on location.
- The coastal area is rich in biodiversity containing vast mangroves, beautiful estuaries and natural lagoons. Various species of mangrove form the predominant vegetation in this area of typical marine-coastal ecosystem influenced by the fluctuation of the tides. Several lagoons in the rainy season provide refuge for both migratory and resident birds, as well as spawning grounds for various species of tortoise, molluscs, crustaceans, and fish.
- The vegetation of the wetland ecosystem is dominated by species of mangroves. Of the six species of mangrove identified in the Gulf, Red Mangrove (Rhizophora mangle) is the most common, mostly occupying the areas permanently inundated by the tides. Black Mangrove (Bruguiera gymnorrhiza) is the second most pervasive species and is generally found around the rivers where sediments are deposited along the shoreline. White Mangrove (Laguncularia racemosa) is the third most dominant, followed by Botoncillo (Conocarpus erectus); both are generally found further inland and are inundated by the tide less frequently. The dominance of different species over others correlates with the frequency of inundations, water quality, and levels of salinity.