"New Costa Rica",
But super in its own right,
Ripe for exploring.
Nicaragua was country number 4 on mine and my wife's Central American adventure in 2015, and it was one of our favourite places along the way. People say that it's becoming the "new Costa Rica", in that there is loads of tourism potential. They're probably right - and Nicaragua has the advantage that it's cheaper and less touristy, though of course that comes with the fact that the facilities are not quite as advanced as in Costa Rica.
After a really long coach ride from El Salvador, we arrived at Managua. The city itself isn't exactly 'beautiful', but after wondering around (mainly by car actually), we found it pretty cool. The next day, we took a trip to Granada, which is a lovely old colonial city by the enormous Lake Nicaragua. We took a boat ride on the lake, with a local tour guide, which was really relaxing as well as interesting. We just about held it together in spite of the 'threat' of both crocodiles and sharks (in a lake!).
We particularly enjoyed the easygoing atmosphere, the scenery, and the fact that it's not as touristy as other places in the region.