Little Corn Island is Pure Caribbean—a fantastic getaway retreat on the Caribbean side of Nicaragua. If you plan well, you can be here in a day, whether flying or arriving by boat!
With a well-planned itinerary, it is possible to travel between Little Corn Island and major cities in the US, Central America or South America in a single day. First, you must book a flight to Managua. There are several airlines flying into Nicaragua: American, United, Delta, Spirit Airlines and Copa. Kayak.com is one of the best resources for finding cheap airfare. We suggest visiting their site for a comprehensive list of flights and prices available. Great deals are typically available in the fall and spring.
From Managua, fly La Costena to Big Corn Island. Their ticket counter is just outside the main terminal. The flight takes just over one hour total. Sometimes there is a brief stop in Bluefields on the way. They leave Managua three times daily, at 6:30am, 11:00am, and 2:00pm, so book international flights that arrive at least 90 minutes before these times.
Return flights to Managua from Corn Island arrive at about 10:00am and 5:00pm. Round trip airfare on La Costena between Managua and Big Corn Island is approximately $165.
¬ Get more information on La Costena flight schedules
¬ Book a flight on La Costena
Once you have arrived on Big Corn you will want to make your way via taxi to the wharf. The taxi ride is about 7 minutes and should cost $5. At the wharf (as you enter the gate) you will need to pay a 5 Cordoba tax allowing you to leave Big Corn via boat. The boats to Little Corn run at 10am and 4:30pm and the return boats to Big Corn run at 6:30am and 1:30pm daily.
The boats between Little Corn and Big Corn are timed to coincide with the morning and afternoon flights. Of course, due to weather and sea conditions, these schedules are occasionally disrupted. The boat ride is $7 (160 cordobas) one way. Be sure to bring exact change as the captains do not carry much cash on them. The trip is approximately 20 minutes and has the potential to be quite wet. It is best to assume that you and your luggage will be soaked by sea water as the ride can get bumpy on rough days (on days like this sitting toward the back of the boat can make the ride more comfortable). Pack with this in mind!
If you’re more adventurous or traveling on a stricter budget there are other options once in Nicaragua to get to the Corn Islands (this will consist of a bus ride and several boat trips). First you will need to get to El Rama. There are a few buses that will get you there from several cities. From Managua, there is a 9 pm bus (Bluefields Express) that connects with the boats leaving for Bluefields early in the morning.
¬ Vianica full listing of bus schedules
¬ Detailed information regarding boat schedules and fares
There are "fast pangas" which go down the river to Bluefields or El Bluff and cost between $10 and $15 and take approximately 1 hour. From there you can catch a passenger or freight boat to Big Corn Island. This can take between 4 and 8 hours (look out for Island Express, Captain D, Bluefields Express or Umberto Promer). From Big Corn you can catch the $7 pangas, which operate twice daily at 10am and 4:30pm.
Upon arriving on Little Corn there will be a staff member to greet you with an island map and direct you toward a hotel or hostel. If you don’t know where you are staying, we can help you decide.