Adventurous tales of pirates and bloodshed belie the ho-hum nature of this Miskito community along the northeastern edge of the Río Plátano reserve. Waters heavy with alligators might be the only sense of thrill left to a 4,100-person town once called Brewer's Lagoon, a tribute to the British privateer "Bloody Brewer," who sought refuge in the narrow canals. Today, life centers on fishing and cattle ranching in the one-road settlement. For many travelers, Brus Laguna is a godsend for (relatively) speedy access into La Mosquitía.
Three weekly Sosa flights can eliminate days of grueling land travel. Motorized cayuko canoes wait at the boat landing to transport newcomers immediately to Raista/Belén, Palacios, and Las Marías—although newly built cabanas in the adjacent Great Pine Savanna are a good reason to stick around for a bit and enjoy the breezy beaches. The town itself is a one-road municipality with a basic medical center, a police office, community telephones, and a few pulpería general stores. The most notable asset, however, is its top-notch fishing. Snapper, grouper, jack, tarpon, and bonito fish fill the lagoon, which stays salty in the dry period and floods with fresh river water in the rainy months.