Nicaragua is not a rich, but a very beautiful country. It has quite well developed tourist destinations, but the prices for tourists are reasonable. In addition to the beauties of nature and museums familiar to us, Nicaragua offers entertainment that is unique in its kind.
Where can you slide down the slope of a volcano on a wooden board? To Nicaragua! And where can you look into the crater of an active volcano? To Nicaragua! And to see the old city buried under a layer of lava? Also in Nicaragua. And this is not the whole list of unique sights of the country.
In addition to volcanoes and beautiful natural parks, the country has beautiful picturesque cities that tourists should definitely see. Despite the poverty of the country, they are very neat and pretty. Among them are Granada, Esteli, Managua.
The coasts of Nicaragua are strewn with fine white sand. Therefore, beach holidays are well developed here, hotels, restaurants and cafes have been built, and there are more and more tourists every year. In the country you can find quiet deserted beaches and places where you can dance on the sand all night.
What to see in Nicaragua?
The most interesting and beautiful places, photos and a brief description.
City of Granada
The main tourist city of Nicaragua. Here flows an independent life, separate from the whole country. Horses gracefully pass through the streets with well-preserved colonial architecture. They ride tourists, and also serve as a means of transportation among local residents. It is calm and quiet in Granada, the poverty of the state does not affect the charm of the ancient city, the beauty of churches and nature.
In the middle of the beautiful lake Nicaragua is a beautiful island. It is known for the volcanoes Concepción and Maderas. In fact, Ometepem is an isthmus connecting these two giants. The height of Concepción is 1610 m, and the Maderas volcano is 1394 m. Tourists are led to the volcanoes by local residents. There is a lagoon in the crater of Maderas, near which a forest has formed, plantations of coffee and bananas, and there are many cafes and restaurants on the island itself.
Not far from Granada is the Mombacho volcano, on which a national park has been created. It is called the "cloud forest" because of the constant humidity. It was she who caused the appearance of the most beautiful wildlife on the volcano. The park has several paths lined with wooden steps. During the walk you can see many species of animals and orchids. There are excellent views from the top of the volcano.
Corn Islands (Corn Island)
The Corn Islands are located in the Caribbean Sea, 70 km off the coast of Nicaragua. Recently, they have become increasingly popular. The white sand beaches are surrounded by coral reefs and are great for diving. They are quiet and calm, peace is replaced only by incendiary festivals. These include the Crab Festival and the Palo de May Dance Festival.
City of Esteli
This city in the northwest of Nicaragua can be called the capital of tobacco production in the country. Trade is actively developing here, so Esteli is constantly growing. It has a well-arranged water supply network and wastewater drainage. Therefore, the atmosphere in the city is very pleasant. In the vicinity of Esteli, you can see hills with rock paintings. The remains of huge animals were also found there.
Salto de la Estanzuela waterfall
The picturesque Salto de La Estanzuela waterfall is located 6 km from Esteli. A tour to it can be booked in the city. On the way, the guide will tell you about the history and features of these places. You can swim in the lake near the waterfall, and walking around the surroundings, you can see the beautiful nature. The waterfall of Salto de La Estanzuela is small, but during the rainy season it grows significantly in size.
City of Managua
The capital of Nicaragua and the country's largest city. The city has suffered from natural disasters more than once, but has retained a pleasant appearance and neatness, and people have not lost optimism and love for life. The city center is located near Lake Managua. There is also a central park and the main square of the city. The most unusual attraction of the city is the Akaulinka footprints. These are footprints of people and animals fleeing the volcano.
Old Cathedral in Managua
The Old Cathedral or the Cathedral of St. James was built in Belgium, and then in 1920 was delivered by ship to Nicaragua. It is made in neoclassical style, made of concrete and metal. The foundation for the cathedral is the foundation of the demolished church of Santiago. Its appearance attracts many tourists, but no one manages to get inside. Due to the deplorable state after the earthquake, it was closed.
San Juan del Sur beach
San Juan is an entertainment center for lovers of dancing and beach holidays. Near it are beautiful beaches with cafes, clean sand and beautiful nature. Some of them are completely deserted, and some have excellent conditions for surfing. Beginners are offered surf lessons. Dancing on the beach begins in the evening and ends around two in the morning.
One of the most beautiful places in Nicaragua is located near the pretty and neat city of Catarina. This is Lake Apoyo. Its area is 21 km², and the depth is 175 meters. Apoyo is round in shape, the water is clear and has an incredible blue color. Due to the fact that the lake is heated by a volcano, swimming in its warm water, admiring the magnificent scenery, is a heavenly delight.
City of Leon
The former capital of Nicaragua lies to the northwest of Managua. The city of Leon was founded in 1524 at the foot of the Momotombo volcano. But after its eruption, the city was moved 30 km further. Now Leon is considered the intellectual center of the country. The city is steeped in history and has retained a lot of beautiful architecture. Leon has the largest cathedral in Central America, many museums and churches.
Cerro Negro Volcano
On the Cerro Negro volcano, they have fun in a very unusual way, you can’t do it anywhere else. The volcano is considered active, its last eruption was in 1999. Its height is 728 meters. There are incredible views from the top. And those who want to ride along its steep black slopes covered with ash and sand sit on a special wooden board and rush down at great speed.
The ancient colonial city of León, built in the 16th century, was destroyed by a volcano. Many buildings were buried under the layer of lava. And so, in 1967, the ruins of the city were discovered. It is a unique 16th century colonial city that has never been rebuilt. Leon Viejo is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The volcano is located on the northwestern shore of Lake Managua. It was he who buried the city of Leon with a lava flow, forcing the inhabitants to move. The volcano has a conical shape, its height is 1297 meters. Momotombo is one of the symbols of Nicaragua and was even depicted on the country's coat of arms. And on December 1, 2015, the volcano woke up for the first time in 110 years, putting on a fire show for tourists.
City of Katarina
First of all, the city is famous for Lake Apoyo and gorgeous landscapes. Not far from it rises the Mombacho volcano, which is also visible from the observation platforms. In Katarina there are cafes, restaurants with delicious cuisine, shops with souvenirs and sweets, workshops. You can shop here for every taste and budget. Traditionally, picturesque paintings by local artists are brought from it.
The city of León is home to the beautiful León Cathedral. Its construction lasted more than half a century: it began in 1747 and ended in 1814. It was consecrated by Pope Pius IX in 1860. It is the largest cathedral in all of Central America. Its main attraction is the statue of the Virgin Mary, which was created for the cathedral in the 20th century. Many famous Nicaraguans are buried in the cathedral.
Just an hour's drive from the capital is the Bosavas Nature Reserve. Its area is 730 thousand hectares. And this is about 16% of the entire country. Bosawas are the green lungs of Nicaragua. Pines, oaks, rubber trees, redwoods grow in the reserve. Among the representatives of the fauna are alligators, cougars, ocelots, monkeys, deer and a bird, which is a symbol of the country. It is called guardabarranco and is distinguished by blue feathers on the tail.
Masaya Volcano is part of the largest national park in Nicaragua. This is the first attraction that tourists rush to see. The volcano is more than 2500 years old, and its height is 635 meters. It is unique in that it allows you to approach yourself in tight and literally lower your head into the crater. Incredible views open up from the top of the volcano, where you can also ride horses while admiring nature.
Lake Nicaragua is freshwater, its area is 8264 km². It is the largest freshwater lake in Latin America. Once it was part of the ocean, but then separated from it, while retaining some of the inhabitants. Among them are sharks. This is the only freshwater lake on the planet where these animals live permanently. The waters of Nicaragua are not very calm, waves periodically appear on them.
These are volcanic islands located in the south of Lake Nicaragua. The archipelago consists of four large islands and 32 small ones. People lived on the archipelago in ancient times. This is evidenced by ancient petroglyphs. On the rocks and stones, scientists found drawings depicting people, parrots, monkeys. The Solentiname Islands have been given the status of a national natural monument.
Montelimar beach is located in the west of the country. It is strewn with fine white sand, surrounded by picturesque nature and washed by the waters of the Pacific Ocean. The length of the beach is 3 km. It has luxurious and five-star hotels. Tourists are offered a relaxing holiday on the beach, entertainment in hotels or excursions to the cities of Nicaragua.
Fortress of the Immaculate Conception
The fortress is located in the town of El Castillo. It was erected in 1672 to protect against invaders and wild tribes. She survived more than one terrible battle, was captured and again besieged. Now the fortress houses a two-story museum, which includes the surviving premises: barracks, weapons, prison cells, a chapel. The fortress offers beautiful views of the river and the picturesque jungle.
Akaulinka Footprint Museum
These are the oldest human footprints found in the Americas. Their age is more than 6 thousand years, and they were left on volcanic lava. During the volcanic eruption, people and animals, trying to escape, fled from their settlement, leaving traces. In addition, the museum presents various household items of people who lived in that territory, and even the remains of a mammoth.
Selva Negra Mountain Resort
It is a hotel located on the territory of a historic estate, surrounded by coffee plantations. This coffee farm was founded by German immigrants in 1891. Since 1976, the place has been a popular tourist destination in Nicaragua. The resort is located 11 kilometers from the city of Matagalpa.