Bluefields and its doors wide open to the Caribbean
The town was founded in the early 17th century by Mr. Blauvelt, a Battalion pirate, whose Bluefields was his headquarters for the departure of freebooter expeditions and storage base for his booty. Bluefields or the blue fields is the translation of the Dutch surname of the master of the place at that time.
The history of the town was more marked by the shipwreck of a Portuguese boat off Bluefields. African slaves had been stranded in 1641 on the central American territory, lost in the ebony trade triangle of the time.
1861 marked the creation of the protectorate, the Caribbean area of Honduras and Nicaragua were then under the yoke of the English. The architectural style of Bluefields still reflects this today. Victorian style houses, made of colorful wood, are still present in the town. We learn a lot of historical anecdotes.
Bluefields: a cosmopolitan city
Bluefields is the capital of the Autonomous Region of the South Atlantic, between Kukra Hill and San Juan del Norte, the Caribbean Sea and El Rama.
It is a municipality where more than 6 ethnic groups converge, a real mix has taken place here, between Africans, mestizos, Spaniards, English and natives, a Caribbean community of nearly 50,000 people. Creole is spoken here and the atmosphere is very “local” and rustic.
Wooden houses dress the village, without logic or respected development, it floats a Caribbean air, the music is omnipresent, the sun, the palm trees, it’s another Nicaragua, again!
May Pole: a traditional festival in Bluefields
Stemming from its history and British customs, the town of Bluefields celebrates the first day of May every year. This date corresponds to the arrival of spring in Europe and the beginning of the rainy season in Nicaragua. Festivities are held throughout the month in the streets of the town with dances to the rhythm of trumpets and drums, a culinary competition, parades and the crowning of the Queen at the end of the month.
What to do, what to see in Bluefields?
The city has no particular charm and is not a must in Nicaragua. However, you can enjoy strolling through the streets of Bluefields to discover the old buildings and the local population.
The most important sites of the city are the following:
- The Catholic and Moravian churches
- The central park, el parque de Reyes, in front of the municipal palace, where you can relax in the shade of its trees
- The Atlantic Coast Research and Documentation Center (BICU-CIDCA) to deepen your knowledge of the history, culture, marine biology, ecology and demography of the Caribbean coast
- The historical museum of the Atlantic coast
How to get there ?
From Managua, the capital, you can reach the town of Bluefields by plane, with daily flights from the airline company La Costeña.
Bluefields is also accessible by land, although the journey is much longer and is a real expedition for which you must have the time. You will first have to take a bus to the town of El Rama and then a panga on the rio Escondido before arriving in Bluefields.
For a glimpse of the roads of the great Nicaraguan west, watch the France 5 program “Les routes de l’impossible – Nicaragua, au nom de la loi”. (Roads of the impossible – Nicaragua, in the name of the law).