Rivas

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The Rivas station is a classic busy bus station in Nicaragua. There are a ton of buses coming and going and it seems impossible to fit them all in such a small spot. This is also one of the less fun stations to pass through since the taxi touts are frequent and many. 

We were here in May 2017 to ask the station manager about the schedules and prices.

 

Rivas to Granada

Every day of the week buses to Granada go at 6:10am, 8am, 10:15am, 11:15am, 12:10pm, 1:55pm, 3:10pm 4:20pm and 5:55pm. It takes about ~2hrs and costs 50C$ (Dec 2018)

Granada to Rivas: (ordinary bus)  The bus goes 7 times per day at: 5:50am, 6:30am, 8:05am, 9:30am, 11:30am, 12:40pm, 1:10pm and 3:10pm (no 3:10 on Thursdays and Sundays). The bus takes about 2.5hrs and costs 40C$. I would arrive at least 15 mins early just to be sure you get the bus, I have asked the bus drivers at this station on two different days for the schedule and a couple of the times are different by about 20 mins. The earlier ones are listed above.

 

Rivas to San Juan del Sur

Every half hour. Takes about 45mins and costs 30C$. Last one 5:30pm.

San Juan del Sur to Rivas: 5am, 5:45am, 6:30am, 7am, 8am, 8:25am, 9am, 9:30am, 10am, 10:45am, 11:30am, 12:10pm, 1pm, 2:20pm, 3:20pm, 5pm, 30C$,  about 45minutes

 

Rivas to Managua

The regular chicken bus goes every 25 minutes until 5:40pm. Arriving at the Mercado Roberto Huembes. They cost 56C$ and take about 3hrs.

You can also get an Expreso bus (72C$) but it leaves from the in front of the Puma gas station at the rotunda about a 10 minute walk from the Rivas terminal. This bus is starting in San Jorge and passes every half hour or so. It takes about 2hrs and 20 min. The rotunda is a roundabout at the edge of the city.

There are also 4 Expreso buses/day from Peñas Blancas to Managua which also pass by the Rotonda in Rivas. They are a slightly more comfortable bus. They leave the border at 12:30pm, 1:40pm, 2:20pm, 4:20pm. They will pass Rivas about 20-30 minutes from these times. They cost 72C$ and take about 2hrs 20min to get to the Mercado Roberto Huembes 

 

Rivas to Peñas Blancas

Buses leave about every 20minutes. The cost is 20C$ and it takes about 40min.

The Expreso bus to Peñas Blancas also passes the Rotonda – read above. Though I am not sure it’s worth walking there to get it since its a short trip and there are so many leaving from the main terminal.

 

Rivas to Playa Gigante

There is only one bus per day to Gigante that goes all the way there, which leaves in the afternoon at 1:30pm from Rivas. Important to note: this bus does not run on Sundays. In the past it didn’t run on Saturdays either, however a traveller recently told us the bus now goes on Saturdays now too! The cost is about 40 C$ and takes about 1.5 to 2hrs.

 

If you miss the 1:30pm direct bus you can grab the bus to Las Salinas, which leave every hour, and get off at the junction for the road that heads to Gigante.  The beach is about 5km from here and your options are to hitch hike or walk.

 

Rivas to Tola

Every 40 minutes until 5:15pm

 

Rivas to Gigante via Tola

There is another option to consider if you miss the once per day bus all the way to Playa Gigante. You can get the bus to Tola and change to the school bus bus going to Gigante. You will have to time this one correctly since there is only one bus per day at 12:30pm from Tola to Playa Gigante from Monday to Friday but not on weekends.

 

Rivas to Las Salinas

Bus goes at 5:30am, 9:10am, 11am, 12:50pm, 2:30pm, 4:00pm, 4:50pm.

 

Rivas to Astillero

Two buses per day at 5:30am and 4:50pm.

Important: If you trying to get to Popoyo be aware that this bus will drop you to the entrance to Guasacate (Popoyo) but that’s it. You will have to walk the rest of the way, which is several kilometers.

If you are coming from Managua we are told you can also go to Nandaime first and then get the bus to Astillero from there. This bus goes at 9am and 2:30pm.

 

Rivas to Popoyo

If you are heading to Popoyo from Rivas be aware that if you are staying in Guasacate then your bus will not get you to the front door – or even very close. You have two options:

You can take the bus to Las Salinas. The bus will get you to about 7km from the strip of hotels in Guasacate and so you will need to walk or taxi the rest of the way.

 

You can take the Astillero bus but it will only drop you at the entrance to Guasacate (Popoyo) and it is still a few kms  until you will reach the majority of the popular hostels. You’ll have to walk or hitch a ride if you’re lucky.

 

Rivas to San Jorge (then to Ometepe)

If you are headed to Ometepe then you will go through San Jorge. There is a bus that runs every hour and costs 7C$. The bus doesn’t pull into the station but passes by on the street on the north side. Here is the San Jorge Ferry Schedule . You can also get a taxi from Rivas to San Jorge for 20C$.

 

Rivas to Jinotepe

5:50am, 7:05am 8:20am, 10am, 10:50am, 1:30pm, 2:30pm, 3:35pm, 5:10pm

 

Help your fellow traveller

If you have taken any of the buses on this page, please drop us a comment below about how the trip went, what time you left, how long it took and what it cost. And, definitely let us know if we have anything wrong.

 

Lets help each other in our travels!

 

Notice:

We have been getting more and more reports of microbuses and chicken buses charging tourists extra for their baggage. This started about a year ago. It seem that drivers/attendants have turned onto the idea that they can make more money by charging tourists for their bags. Sometimes they want more than the cost of your seat! This used to just be a problem in Costa Rica, but it’s moved north. Most travellers say they have negotiated the extra fee down to a lower amount, which you can try too! You could also just refuse and see what happens. I give no formal advice here and you can decide your course of action in the moment. I am not sure the best way to address this – perhaps it’s complaints to the Nicaraguan Tourist board. Unlikely anyone will do anything or care, but if enough tourists complain it could help.

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FINE PRINT

We do not 100% guarantee that all schedules, times and prices are exact. The information in this website is based on personal experience and by information submitted by other travellers. Information has been gathered from station schedules, station managers, bus drivers and driver helpers. We have done our best to get as much accurate up to date information as possible, but prices and times change. Also, remember that you are responsible for your own health and safety. Travel safe and travel smart - and have fun!

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63 travel tips for Rivas - share your tips below!

  1. Leah

    Haha I was charged US$15!! for my surfboard bag – I refused and the amount that they wrote onto a piece of paper that looked like a ticket was ripped up in front of my face and I was told to get off. This was after they just took a few hundred cordoba off of my hand in a rush and scramble of yelling and pushing for me to get on. This was my first day arriving in Nicaragua (Managua) to San Juan Del Sur and I didnt understand the cordoba well enough or speak spanish well but I knew this was outrageous. I was a single female travelling a lone and had no other option but to get off with them taking my money and leaving me stranded (that was the last of my cordoba I had on me) or stay and pay. When I arrived to Rivas I was told there were no other buses that day until 5pm (it was 12pm) and was forced into a taxi that cost way more that my ego will allow me to say. The trip cost me the same as a private shuttle and ruined my budget.

  2. Alegria

    Same thing happened to us on the bus granada – rivas, they wanted to charge us an extra 50c per bars. My partner and I we have 40L bags and we always manage to get our bags under our legs or over our knees in order to take only one seat each, even though it s super uncomfortable, but the bus guy simply refused. We thought it unfair to pay an extra seat if we are willing to use only one seat each. We argued with them foe a while and in the end they reduced the price to 70 Cordoba each, bags and journey. So an extra 40c for both our bags, I think it was fair enough then. So please people, don’t accept to pay the gringo price because it will only go higher until absurd (yesterday my hostel tried to charge another guy 9USD for a laundry), please insist.

  3. April

    This JUST happened to us on the bus from Rivas to Granada. He told us “ciento cordobas” (100C$) before we got on. I thought he meant meant TOTAL (he meant EACH)

    I argued with him because he charged the people in front of me 50C$ but he insisted our backpacks cost an extra 50C$ each) they’re 65 L so not small at all but they’re stowed up top 😑.

    My boyfriend gave in and paid him 200C$ so… He got 200C$ out of us.

    Anyone reading this ***ask for the cost PER PERSON or in total before getting on the bus (and ask if your luggage/ backpacks are is included in the price)****

    Also yes the price is listed in the front but if it’s a crowded bus it’s hard to get up there to see it.

    I wanted to refuse, charging us 100C$ for pur 2 backpacks is bullshit. But it does happen a lot.

  4. Alex

    All you need to do is read the reviews on the Rivas bus terminal on Google Maps to know what you are in for at this terminal.

    Going from Granada to Rivas (for Ometepe) we were warned by our hostel to not get off before the Rivas bus terminal. The bus stopped 3 times before the terminal with the driver and conductor telling us to get off for Ometepe. We refused each time and they weren’t happy. The first time was for a bus that took you directly to San Jorge ferry. Someone who got the bus did get there before us but paid 100 cordoba for the 2nd bus.

    The other two times it stopped was outside Rivas where you were at the mercy of whatever price the taxi drivers wanted. This is what our hostel warned us about. Do not get off here, go to the end of the route with all the locals. At the terminal, we were hounded by taxi drivers but eventually found a decent driver who took us to the ferry for 30 cordoba per person (4 in a taxi).

    On the way back… Rivas to San Juan Del Sur. Getting a taxi to the bus terminal from the ferry was no problem. But at the terminal we were hounded again (of course). We found the San Juan Del Sur bus and gave our backpacks to the man on the roof. He demanded we pay before getting on the bus. The bus was full so we figured this was to stop him having to push his way down. Nope, on the bus a different man asks us to pay again. Says he knows nothing about the man we paid earlier. Learn from me, do not pay anyone outside the bus. They are probably all in it together (unless they just let random people on the roof of their bus??) so it’s all a bit dodgy. The reviews on Google do say TRUST NOONE and it’s unfortunstely very true. Funny how the real conductor is nowhere to be seen until the bus leaves.

  5. Hanna

    We just took the bus from Granada to Rivas and the bus drivers at the terminal are not open for discussions about the price at all.
    We needed to pay 100 Cordoba per person ( 50 per person + 50 per luggage). We tried to argue about the price but they didn’t reduce the price at all. So we angrily took the bus in the end.

    In Rivas the taxi drivers were all over us and they try to overcharge you too. 30 Cordoba is a fair price to go to tge ferry station, but almost no taxi driver whats to go that low in price so you really need to bargain with them.
    On the way back from the ferry station to Rivas it was easier to find a collectivo taxi for 30 Cordoba (if there are other travellers takeing a taxi together helps reducing the price).

    For the bus from Rivas to San Juan del Sur, the price is 30 Cordoba per person + 30 Cordoba per luggage (only for tourists, of course) no chance to argue either, so we needed to pay.

  6. JD

    You can catch a bus to San Jorge from the Uno at the rotunda on the highway, I dont think theres any set schedule, just buses doing runs between trips to Managua, etc. It cost 20c which seemed overpriced, a taxi back cost 30c all the way to the market. I didnt negotiate but I think that is the actual price for a collectivo taxi since thats whats locals paid too.

  7. Daan

    We took the bus from Rivas to Granada at 1:50PM. It took nearly 2 hours. The guy told us to pay 200C$ for 2 people and one backpack which surprised everyone. After the locals said it was outrageous he went down to a 100$C. In the end we paid 40C$ per person and 20C$ for our luggage. Don’t fall for this! The price should be 40C$ from Rivas to Granada.

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