Category: Nicaragua

The lovely & contested Rio San Juan: Erin on the radio

Erin on the radio, talking about the Rio San Juan

Boys diving into the Rio San Juan, the river between Costa Rica and Nicaragua, which is once again under dispute. Photo by David W. Smtih

On October 8, 2010, the Nicaraguan government began dredging the Rio San Juan, the fluid border between Nicaragua and Costa Rica. They also sent troops to a small island in the river called Isla Calero, which is owned by Costa Rica.

The ensuing conflict was only the latest in a series of Costa Rica – Nicaragua border disputes that dates back at least to the 1850s, when the CaƱas-Jerez Treaty set out the terms under which both countries could navigate the shared river.

A few months before this latest conflict arose, I explored the beautiful and remote Rio San Juan area, writing about a riverside fishing lodge, a gay Borders Cafe in a riverside town, and a new tourism initiative for the little-visited area sponsored by the Nicaraguan government.

In December 2010 I spoke with KPAM radio’s The Travel Show with Pat Boyle about the river, its history, and the most recent border conflict. Click on the link at the beginning of this post to hear the 10-minute discussion.