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“ONE OF THE BEST TRIPS OF OUR LIFE!!!”

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CHICABRAVA Surf Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 18, 2013

My best friend and I loved our experience all around. The town, the surf house, the staff, the instruction...the beaches!

Our instructors, Candace and Shelby, were so much fun. Not only did they instruct us in the water but they were very helpful when we booked other excursions, and would go eat with us at night if we asked them to. The owner, Ashley, even hung out with us a couple times while surfing and horseback riding.

We spent the whole time laughing, surfing, and trying new food!
The yoga that was included with our packages was better than I thought it would be. It's like doing Yoga in a tree house.

*Another thing worth mentioning... My Go pro fell off my head while surfing and the instructor found it within minutes of my panic!

LOVED
-Horseback riding day (Nothing more amazing than galloping full speed on the beach)
-Yoga
-Pelican Eyes Resort (Chica Brava girls can go hang out at the infinity pools here)
-Massage (OMG just what I needed after a week of surf)
-A disc of 300+ professional photos from our week of surfing.

I blogged multiple times about our experience here, photos included.

http://www.muchomuchobuenobueno.com/2013/01/around-my-home-chica-brava-surf-house.html

http://www.muchomuchobuenobueno.com/2013/02/life-at-surf-camp-chicabrava.html

http://www.muchomuchobuenobueno.com/2013/01/greetings-from-nicaragua.html

As for the bad reviews here, I feel like people forget that Nicaragua is a 3rd world country, and you are signing up for SURF CAMP at a SURF HOUSE, not an all-inclusive resort. And for the money you spend to come to Chica Brava, I think it's a great value! You basically get private surf lessons for a full week, safe and reliable transportation to and from the airport (which is 3+ hours EACH way), transportation to all the surf spots every day, surfboards, and a safe and secure place to stay.

We have recommended Chica Brava to all of our adventurous friends, and we plan on coming back soon!

Room Tip: If you want to be able to walk around town often you should stay here. It's on the beach and wal...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Brandi L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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263 - 269 of 331 reviews

Reviewed March 11, 2013

I spent a week at Chicabrava in mid January and had such an amazing experience. It was exactly the kind of trip I needed; I came home feeling rejuvenated in mind, body and soul! I went with an old friend so really enjoyed spending time with her, but also had the best time getting to know the five other ladies there as well. We stayed at the Cloud Farm, which I'd highly recommend for anyone over the age of 25. The instructors/hosts were great - they were patient, encouraging, fun and all had great vibes. You could tell they loved their jobs, which I think says something about the place. And Ashley (the owner) spent quite a bit of time with us as well - up to the farm for yoga and breakfast, out surfing one day, cocktails etc. They all were instrumental in making the week so super fun. Oh, and yes, I did learn to surf! Tough sport for sure, but rewarding too. I look forward to doing more of it. I would definitely go back to Chicabrava, and I would definitely go back to Nicaragua. They both far exceeded my expectations. Thank you Chicabrava!!

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank rconnor20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 27, 2013

We (two of us) attended Chika Brava in early February 2013 and were both exceptionally disappointed by the experience. We WOULD NOT recommend this camp to anyone. Our room at the Surf House was not clean, had a broken fan, missing light bulbs, no hot water and was exceptionally noisy (they tell you to bring ear plugs if you're a light sleeper...but they fail to mention the that several local bars provide you with an unbelieveably loud, thumping bass that you can feel in your bed until 3:30 am). In addition, although we had communicated extensively with the camp that we were vegetarian it seemed impossible to actually obtain any type of vegetarian breakfast. The lead instructor was brand new and although she was very nice she seemed to not have any idea of how to actually teach. The group at the camp was was composed of beginner, intermediate and advanced surfers and the staff was too small to be able to provide all members of the group with effective training each day. Although we were told that the staff would assist us with side activities such as a catamaran trip, horseback riding and ziplining they had no knowledge of how to actually do that and we spent a great deal of our time trying to set trips up by ourselves. Ashley, the owner was non-existent and when she finally showed up she appeared to have little interest in how the camp was actually being run or getting involved to helps solve the many problems the group was having. This was one big waste of time and money and if one person reads this and thinks better of paying money to attend this camp I will feel like I have done my part. Several of the surfers at our camp were experienced and said that tthey got much more bang for their buck at suff camps in Costa Rica that were much better run.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with friends
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11  Thank Lori K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 9, 2013

I am the mother of Sarah Proffitt, who recently had my first grandchild. Sarah was an instructor there and Ashley so graciously rented me a room for a couple of months.
The clientele that has been through the surf camp have been amazing and my time here has been ever so wonderful. I have made many new friends from all over the world, and will cherish these times for life. My daughter has a circle of friends, who mostly came out of this camp and I highly recommend Chicabrava Surf House to anyone who would like to learn to surf!

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank herblady63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 27, 2012

If you want a relaxing, calm, thereputic, rejuvinating experience, come here. The staff is so knowledgeble about Nicaragua, local cusoms and food, surfing and the surrounding areas. I would recomend the Cloud Farm if you need a get away combined with a fantastic learning experience. The housing was clean, spacious and very well kept. The activities were well planned, relaxing, with the right amont of challenge. I have done a lot of travel in my life and would deem this one of the best trips of my life.

Room Tip: The Cloud Farm (any room) was relaxing and comfortable. The staff was very quick to clean and take...
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank Savannah V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 19, 2012

Chicabrava was my first solo travel adventure. I couldn't have asked for a better experience! I spent the week with 5 other solo travelers at the Cloud Farm which was just gorgeous. In addition to learning how to surf (after never touching a surfboard I finally caught a wave--what a feeling!), we went horseback riding through the jungle, ziplining on a canopy tour, and even learned to milk a cow--we were on a farm after all! The views were breathtaking. Every meal we ate was prepared from ingredients grown right on the farm--the house staff truly took care of us. Everything was open air so you do want to make sure you have bugspray--they provide mosquito nets if you choose to use them, but I thought bugspray was sufficient. I felt safe and comfortable the entire week, and loved that the point of this camp is to challenge yourself and conquer fears (which I believe I did). I can't say enough good things about this camp--I looked it up 3 years ago and finally did it, but I say if you're even thinking of it, DO IT. Great experience!

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank Kelly M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 19, 2012

I attended the ChicaBrava surf camp Nov. 10th-17th, and I stayed at the Cloud Farm. It was an amazing experience - I attended with five other girls, all solo travelers like myself, and we bonded immediately and had a great time together! Before this trip I had only surfed once before, but the instruction I received was so good that I improved immensely over the week, surpassing my expectations. The instructors, Kate and Sara, were incredibly nice and patient, and provided specific instruction that helped me perfect my pop-up by the end of the week and catch waves that I identified myself. After this week I definitely feel ready to start surfing more seriously at home.

The food was great, and the Cloud Farm was amazing - I highly recommend the horseback ride around the property. I also thought the balance between surfing and other activities was great - I had plenty of time to relax, shop, and check out San Juan del Sur. I definitely plan to go back in the future!

Stayed: November 2012, traveled solo
Thank Karen B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about CHICABRAVA Surf Camp

Address: Cloud Farm and Surf House locations, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua
Location: Nicaragua > Rivas Department > San Juan del Sur
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 71 Specialty Lodging in San Juan del Sur
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
CHICABRAVA is the first and best all-girls surf camp in Nicaragua. We are an elite camp for adventurous women who appreciate comfort as well as challenge. We have two locations - the Cloud Farm and the Surf House - that allow you to join no matter what your desired budget. The Cloud Farm is a private retreat within a gorgeous and secluded 500-acre private reserve and farm overlooking the town of San Juan del Sur and its picturesque bay. The Farm has hundreds of acres of indigenous forest, fruit orchards and organic gardens. Most of our food is organically grown right here! This is the perfect choice for guests who want to "get-away-from-it-all" at our gorgeous open-air surf retreat and enjoy the beauty and serenity of nature! Price is $1600/person for the ALL-INCLUSIVE week. $100 discount for traveling with a friend. The Surf House is right on the beach in San Juan del Sur. It's a great option for those who would like to be closer to all of the action and local flavor in town, and save a bit of money while doing so! The Surf House has loads of space in the hip open-air lounge area. Relax in the hammocks, on the couches, or hang out in the beachfront store at the front of the Surf House! Our three rooms are cozy and private with cold A/C and two shared baths. Price is $990/person for the week. $100 discount for traveling with a friend. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Chicabrava Surf Camp Hotel San Juan Del Sur
CHICABRAVA Surf Camp Nicaragua/San Juan Del Sur

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