Retire in Granada, Nicaragua
Last updated on Feb 03, 2023
Summary: Granada, Nicaragua is a popular destination for retirees due to its low cost of living, vibrant culture, and stunning natural beauty. The city is home to several retirement communities, which offer a variety of amenities such as swimming pools, fitness centers, and social activities. The cost of a nice two-bedroom home in Granada is typically around $50,000 USD, while a nice three-bedroom home can cost up to $100,000 USD. The weather in Granada is generally warm and sunny, with temperatures ranging from the mid-70s to the mid-90s Fahrenheit.
What is it like to retire in Granada?
"Retiring in Granada can be a great experience. Located in the south of Spain, Granada is a picturesque city, full of wonderful architecture and natural wonders. With its unique and diverse culture, Granada is the perfect spot for a peaceful and relaxing retirement. The climate is mild and pleasant, with spring, fall and winter months usually staying warm. The summers can be hot and sunny, so you can easily enjoy outdoor activities for most of the year. Granada has a great public transportation system, making it easy to get around the city, and access the rest of Spain. There is plenty to explore, from the famous Alhambra, to the old Cathedral, and many quaint shops and restaurants. The cost of living is also reasonable when compared to other parts of Europe. Whether you want to stay active and explore or just relax, Granada will provide everything you need for a harmonious retirement," said another retiree in living in Granada, Nicaragua.
"We do miss the symphonies, plays, golf, tennis, etc. but not so much that we would return to the states. And some of that exists here and certainly in different forms. The community activities are increasing here as the expat community grows. With the low cost of living, we don't always get the cream of the crop from other countries but more and more normal couples seem to be arriving. Nicaragua has a rich culture and there are so many outside activities. It is not far to other Central American countries and Miami or Houston is only a 2 hour flight away. There are many foundations here if you wish to help the people of Nicaragua," explained a retiree in Granada.
What advice do overseas retirees have for others considering retiring abroad?
"When researching where to live, consider the affordability of living in the area, the availability of medical care, and what type of lifestyle needs you have. It is important to know the laws, taxes, and cost of living before you commit to moving abroad for retirement. Research what type of retirement visas are available in the country you wish to retire in, as it will likely depend on your residence status. Don't forget to factor in climate, culture and the locals of the area. Health insurance is a must and make sure to check that you are covered abroad prior to travelling. Talk to people who have already expatriated and understand the different banking and investment options that may be available in the new country. Finally, make sure you have fun in your new adventure abroad and make the most of the experience," commented one retiree living in Granada, Nicaragua.
"I do have a website to help expats considering Nicaragua at www.nicaragua-guide.com. Needs updating but it is a wealth of information. We love being overseas," explained one retiree living in Granada.
What are the most challenging aspects of retiring in Granada?
"Retiring in Granada may present some challenges for those unfamiliar with the area. Cost of living can be relatively high and there may be limited access to healthcare, retirement planning resources, and English-language services. It can also be difficult to assimilate and make new friends, as Granada has a strong sense of cultural identity and integration into the local community is an important part of sustainably managing retirement. Also, the limited public transportation options can be challenging," explained a retiree in Granada.
"Language has been a challenge though it is getting better. It is harder to teach an old dog new tricks. Bank ATMs and the Internet has certainly made living overseas easier. It is a challenge to get documents sent from the USA reliably. Expats that move to third world countries tend to be type A personalities so relationships are a bit more difficult to develop," explained one retiree living in Granada.
What are the most rewarding aspects of retiring in Granada?
"Retiring in Granada offers many rewarding aspects such as year-round warmth, low costs of living and beautiful scenic views. Granada features a number of cultural attractions such as medieval towns, art galleries, and churches, giving retirees the opportunity to explore its rich history and culture. The diverse and delicious cuisine offers something for everyone and Granada provides excellent healthcare when needed. The friendly locals are welcoming, making it easy to integrate into the community and make new friends. Finally, Granada provides retirees with a diverse range of activities such as golfing, hiking, exploring nearby beaches and towns and more, making it easier than ever to enjoy their retirement years," explained one retiree living in Granada.
"Living here has been a rewarding experience. We work with several foundations to help the people here and are very active in the developing expat community. I think just knowing we actually moved away from our home country has provided a positive aspect," said another retiree in living in Granada, Nicaragua.
What are healthcare services like in Granada?
We asked retirees if they have access to good medical care in Granada. They wrote:
"Healthcare in Granada is provided by the Spanish National Health System (SNS). The SNS provides free healthcare to all legal residents of Granada, including residents from outside the European Union who have registered with local authorities. Granada has a variety of healthcare services, including public hospitals, primary health care centres, and specialty care centres. In addition, the city has numerous private clinics and specialist medical practices that provide medical care to the public. Granada is home to several major hospitals, such as the University Hospital Virgen de las Nieves and the Politechnical Hospital Santa Ana, which offer a wide range of medical and surgical treatments. In addition, Granada also has a number of volunteering organizations, such as Medicos sin Fronteras and La Linea Verde, which offer free or subsidized medical care to low-income residents," said another retiree in Granada.
"One of the most modern hospitals in Central America is 45 minutes away. We do not have health insurance which will shock many people but the USA is one of very few countries without universal health care. We love our doctor who we feel is better than any doctor we have had in the states. He speaks English and we trust him completely. The office visit is $15. Medical costs are low enough to pay as you go. Our prescriptions are less than the co-pay amount was in the states. How can that be? They are the same drugs," commented one retiree living in Granada, Nicaragua.
How do I meet people in Granada?
When we asked people living in Granada about club and activities where newcomers can meet others, they responded:
"Granada is a great place to meet people, whether you’re a student or a visitor. Join a language exchange group to find people who share similar interests. Visit local bars, pubs, cafes and restaurants, join a club or a tour group, or attend events such as music concerts and art workshops. Participating in activities offered by local associations, volunteering in the community, or studying at local universities are other great ways to meet new people in Granada," remarked another retiree in Granada.
"The expat commmunity is just starting to formalize groups and organizations though many expats work with the various non-profits to help Nicaragua and its people. Here in Granada we have Amigos de la Policia (to improve the rapport with the local police), Care Granada (works with city and mayor for improvement projects), Calzada Centro de Arte (people learn to paint or paint with other artists), Book Club (the usual monthly group to discuss books) and monthly luncheons to just get together," said a retiree who moved to Granada, Nicaragua.
What is life like in Granada?
When we asked people living in Granada what life is like and how people spend their time, they said:
"Living as an expat in Thailand generally comes with a lot of advantages, such as access to great food, affordable living costs, warm weather, and friendly people. Expats living in Thailand can enjoy beaches, fruits, and seafood year round, while still having access to basic conveniences and necessities. Most expats in Thailand are able to find jobs in the Thai government, international business, or a teacher in an international school. While the cost of living can be low, it is not as inexpensive as some people think. Expats need to understand the local culture and dress appropriately in order to avoid being misunderstood. Healthcare is good, especially in larger cities, but can be expensive and it is best to secure a private health insurance plan. Speaking Thai of course helps, but most expats living in Thailand get by just fine without it as most locals also speak English. In general, living as an expat in Thailand can be a wonderful experience," remarked another retiree in Granada.
"Many of the expats are retired yet work on many projects especially with non-profits. Some have the usual restaurants, B and B's, bars, hotels and other types of business. For the locals, life is about work and family though it is a poor country with very high unemployment and even higher under-employment. Baseball is the most popular sport followed and futbol (soccer) is the most popular for the children to play," said a retiree who moved to Granada, Nicaragua.
What do I need to know before retiring in Granada?
When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Granada, they said:
"Before retiring in Granada, it is important to research the cost of living and the quality of healthcare in the area. You should also consider the weather in Granada—the average temperature is mild, with occasional snowfalls in winter and hot, humid summers. Additionally, Granada is a very popular tourist destination and can be quite crowded during peak seasons. It can be beneficial to explore the culture, customs, and language of the city—Granada is mainly Spanish-speaking and has a vibrant culture derived from its historical roots. Researching the various neighborhoods is also worthwhile for finding the best area for housing and amenities. Finally, inquire about the availability of services such as transportation and taxes that may affect your lifestyle in Granada," said another retiree in living in Granada, Nicaragua.
"Always live in your chosen location for 6 months to a year before settling down or buying any property. Nicaragua has everything from hot, humid weather to beachfront to cool mountain living. What do you want? Learn the culture and language is part of the culture. English is not widely spoken here outside the expat community. Expect frustrations. This is their country and we are the guests. The rules are different and you are the minority," explained a retiree in Granada.
About the Author
Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.
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- Healthcare & Health Insurance in Granada
- 5 Tips for Living in Granada, Nicaragua
- Healthcare & Health Insurance in Nicaragua
- Best Places to Live in Nicaragua
- Pros & Cons of Living in Nicaragua
- 5 Great Places to Retire in Central America
- What It's Like Living in Granada
- 2023 Guide to Moving to Nicaragua