In Nicoya, nothing happens. The town is dead. There is never a party. Please! You don’t know what you are talking about. So you don’t make that mistake again for being a stranger or visitor to the colonial city. Here, I’ll explain how it works.
Nightlife in Nicoya has a dynamic that changes according to the day. There are bars that are only attention-grabbing one day a week, there are some that offer special events and there are other small bars that never have a long face on any day of the week.
Look out during the week!
It’s a luke-warm day, but it’s the start of the week. Many restaurants and bars close on Monday but there are some like the Rancho el Estribo (next to the Red Cross) that doesn’t close on Monday. If you visit this place I recommend trying the chifrijo, which comes with fried plantains. They also offer craft beer, made by the owners of the place. If it’s a game day, you can be sure the Estribo will have it on for your viewing pleasure.
Tuesday’s are a great day to enjoy the small bars that always offer great bar snacks and drinks for a great price. You want options? Los Jocotes (in Barrio Los Ángeles), Los Ranchitos (Barrio La Virginia), La Primavera (La Cananga) or El Bosquecito (Barrio San Martín).
Both Los Jocotes and Los Ranchitos have the wonderful, old-school custom of offering a courtesy snack for each cocktail or beer you order. The upside of Los Ranchitos is that it always has the karaoke machine ready for those who like to sing. La Primavera wins with cocktails, since they have everything from mojitos to margaritas. El Bosquecito is known for its 1,000 colon ($1.80) snacks that will fill two people. I recommend the rice with beef and the house hot sauce.
By mid-week the party starts to pick up. People are more upbeat and willing to get home a little later. Wednesdays are a good day to go Más Coyol (on the road to Santa Cruz) karaoke bar. Between all the songs, the dancing starts to roll.
In Nicoya Thursday is treated almost like it were Saturday and payday. Few people stay in on Thursday. The tradition is to go to Tio Juan (in front of the La Alianza gas station). The place always opens with karaoke, but after 10pm people hit the dance floor as if it were New Year’s Eve (Nicoyans love to dance!). Without a doubt, it’s one of the most lively days in Nicoya.
Peculiarly, the party options on Friday aren’t as generous as Thursday, but there are still things to do. El Guayacán (2.5 kilometers toward La Mansión from the Nicoya crossing) has dance night. This place also has a reggae night, but these are usually special events geared towards kids, usually people under 30, but if you enjoy it, go on in.
Saturday also has an end of the world spirit. The big party on this day moves to El Bosque (across the street from La Mansión) and it's not only full of Nicoyans, but people from Hojancha to Nandayure too. The place is a large barn with wood tables and good dance floor where many come to shine.
You can also add a final stop at El Cóndor to this daily agenda, since a big night out should close with a plate of gallo pinto and eggs, a large glass of Kolita soda or a good hot chocolate to recharge the batteries and mitigate the effects of the hangover the day after.