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Jamie Quirk on Living Abroad…

Jamie Quirk

Ever consider living abroad? 

If so, you’re not alone…

According to the Association of Americans Resident Overseas, there are 6.3 million non-military U.S. citizens living abroad.

And my good friend is one of them…

Jamie Quirk has been living abroad in the coastal town of San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua since 2010.  But don’t expect another bitter hippy, escaping U.S. life to become a permanent beach bum sipping beer all day long.

Nope.

Jamie strives to make a difference in the lives of all around her by volunteering and teaching yoga.

But don’t take my word for it…

Jamie shares her experiences and why “living in Nicaragua has completely changed [her] life for the better!” in this exclusive interview…

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Colonial Granada, Nicaragua

Granada – Nicaragua’s former capital – is one of the most attractive cities in Central America. It greets visitors with open arms, sweeping town squares, colonial architecture and beguiling street cafes which serve up mojitos and Tona beer to help you keep cool.

Yes, Granada is attractive. Beautiful, in fact.

But like the best-looking girl in high school, its looks begin to wear off after awhile. Sure, there are several nice walks, impressive views of Volcán Mombacho (on clear days) and oh-so-charming carriage rides around the historic center.

After a few days, though, most visitors are ready to move on.

Located just 31 miles (51km) south of Managua – Nicaragua’s current capital – Granada is an ideal jumping off point to Ometepe, a collection of two volcanoes inside Lake Nicaragua. The lake is within walking distance of downtown.

The following is a list of things to do during your few days here. Three to four days should be sufficient.

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Caribbean Paradise; Corn Islands, Nicaragua

Shhh… don’t tell anybody, but… Nicaragua’s got a secret.

Two, actually.

Located just 50 miles (83m) northeast of Bluefields on the Nicaraguan mainland, the Corn Islands are a low-budget version of the Caribbean dreamscape: white sand beaches, crystal clear waters and endless plates of cheap lobster, shrimp and yellow tail (which is – among other methods – fried and served in a spicy tomato sauce with fried plantains and salad).

It’s an ideal tropical setting where no one hassles you to buy sunglasses, whistles or pirate DVDs.

But there’s something, well, strange about the islands.

Here you have an island off the coast of Nicaragua – a land of Spanish-speaking Latino culture – with predominantly English and African heritage, and they listen to country music.

Old school country music.

Hank Senior. Willie Nelson. Kenny Rogers. All heard blasting – alternating with bouts of reggae – from small waterfront restaurants.

Life here proceeds at a slow pace. So slow, in fact, that you can take a taxi anywhere on the island for less than a dollar.

And speaking of places to go…

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Surf and Sun; San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua

The town of San Juan Del Sur is often misunderstood.

Most weekenders would done this small surfer town as a place for permanent beach bums and entrepreneurial expats.

However, beneath the surface lies a community of warm-hearted locals trying to better their lives and those around them.  It’s not uncommon to see the same person repeatedly in the small town so strike up a conversation, make new friends, and gain a better understanding of San Juan Del Sur. Continue

Volcano Boarding; Cerro Negro, Nicaragua

Half way down the volcano, you realize you’ve just voluntarily signed up for a complete desperate act of insanity, all for the thrill seeking adventurer deep within you.

Totally stupid, but incredibly fun.

Volcano boarding is all the new rage on Cerro Negro, Nicaragua’s 2,388 foot (728 m) tall volcano located near León.  Adventure seekers young and old alike are joining in this new and unusual adventure sport.Continue