By Kelvin Marshall – Del Sur News
Last Saturday March 3rd, I dropped into Playa Majagual to see first-hand what the Son of a Beach Sunset Fest was all about. First let me clarify something. We were at the “real” Playa Majagual, the one you get to from the beach that most people call Playa Majagual (by walking down a narrow lane to the “Bar El Ranchito”). More on confusing beach names in another story!
I was met by Horacio Reyes, the owner of Hola Ola Hostel (on La Chocolata in La Talanguera district of San Juan del Sur). He explained that the goal of “Son of a Beach Sunset Fest” is to create a memorable day out for travelers, expats and locals. “We wanted to get them outside, away from the electronic music and experience a traditional beach day”, said Horacio.
Playa Majagual really does have an island paradise feel to it with ample sand and the only commercial establishment being Bar El Ranchito which is tucked into some trees at the very south end of the beach. There is no surf at this beach but it’s great for walking along the shore and taking the occasional dip (and perfect for this type of event).
Horacio and his crew provide the ingredients that are essentially the catalyst for the experience; safe transport in a school bus (with the only chicken in the cooler ready for the BBQ), a great beach location (that changes every week), live music and of course food and drink. The hostel guests add the human element of fun and games as well as good conversation while making plans for the next part of their trip. The event is open to non-guests to sign up. They can check out the various offers by visiting the event FB page; “Son of a Beach Sunset Fest”.
When I was there, about 40 hostel guests were enjoying the afternoon. As I mingled and chatted with them it became clear that they didn’t fit the stereotypical, or at least my; “back packer profile”.
Martina, a business manager from the Netherlands was visiting Nicaragua for 18 days and told me that she uses hostels and hotels. She said, “I make my plans as I go and never more than a couple of days in advance”. Adding, “For US $29 this is a great day out to a beach I would probably never have found myself”.
Jackie from Ontario, Canada was here for almost three weeks and planned on also visiting Ometepe, Granada and Leon. She was impressed with the trip and said, “Transport, food, live music and drinks for a dollar on a beautiful beach while Canada is freezing… I’m loving it”.
Kyle interrupted his game of catch football to talk to me. He said he worked for the forestry service in Oregon, USA and took a 12 day break between winter ranching jobs. He agreed with my observation about the hostel guests. “I’m having a good time with this great group of people”, he added before returning to his game.
To help you get there; the bus leaves from Hola Ola Hostel at 2 pm and returns at about 9pm (event wraps up at 8pm). For non-guests, Hola Ola Hostel puts on a shuttle from Parlour (Bar & Restaurant) to Hola Ola every hour starting at 11 am. Everyone from travelers to expats and locals are encouraged to become part of this family event. The Sunset Fest Son of a Beach Band is composed of: Bongo Bob, Giovanni Sirias, Alex Renaud, Horacio Reyes and Antonio Martinez.