My wife, our one year old daughter and I have a farm in the mountains of Nicaragua. We have cows, pigs, dogs, bananas (lots of bananas!) and are expanding our list monthly. We are about to plant an acre of passion fruit to see how the goes.
We were going to build cabanas and offer farm stays/horse back tours through coffee country,.. and we will when the tourists come back. There are currently only very adventurous travellers here at the moment, although the political situation is up in the air at the moment, Nicaragua is still far safer than other countries in Central America.
As our number of animals increases we are constantly building new accommodation for them, just finishing stage one of the new pig house and planting an acre of sorghum and beans to keep them fed.
Our goal is self sustainability including food for ourselves, 3 full time workers and the 50 odd animals roaming about the place.
I am Canadian, my wife is Salvadorena and Trixie is probably qualified for 4 passports.
DIY and building projects
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
You will definitely learn Spanish if you work with our guys. You will learn a lot about rural Nicaraguan life and more technical stuff like how to tube a cow, how to shoe a horse, how to pull a stuck calf, even how to administer IV fluids if you choose.
If you choose to work around the house and gardens instead of the barn, you will learn how to compost, build a raised garden, manage an irrigation system. Opportunities are endless. Our typical week includes welding, carpentry, brick laying, gardening, animal wrangling and cooking. Lots of cooking! I am a former chef and my wife an excellent baker, hopefully our brick oven will be up and running, if not, you can help build it and learn how to make refractory cement at home!
Opportunities to volunteer at the local school (which is next door) are available teaching grades 1 through 7. Distributing smokeless wood stoves, training horses (our foreman is a master horse trainer- requires good knowledge of Spanish obviously) learning about the coffee industry, cultivating, picking, pulping...
Lots to do here.
Gardening, building stuff, looking after baby cows if they aren't feeling well. We are also involved in distributing smokeless stoves to the community with the financial assistance of a group of vet clinics in Canada. Hopefully bringing tourists on horse back tours through coffee country will be a thing again soon as well.
As of now, you will be living in the main house in the guest room, private bath, garden access, mountain view and all the dogs you wish to cuddle with. Guest house, 100 metres away is ready to be built. Foundation in place, stones and wood ready,... come build it! Dinner will be with us (Saturday is pizza night) where you will eat with a very entertaining 1 year old. We eat simply for breakfast and lunch (oatmeal or eggs for breakfast, bruschetta or quinoa for lunch and extravagantly for dinner,.. roast chicken with garlic mashed potatoes, butternut squash, arugula/beet salad for dinner tonight)
We are 40 minutes from Matagalpa, a vibrant coffee centre city of Nicaragua. 20 minutes up the mountain is deep jungle and coffee plantations. Quetzals and exotic birding, jungle walks at Esperanza Verde, indigenous villages, but really, you will just want to sit on the steps, stare at the view and pet the dogs, play fetch with Spooky the cattle dog and have a cold beer after a day of work. That is what we do at least.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
More than two
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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