Nicaragua is a small country located in Central America. The country is known for its picturesque natural landscapes with volcanoes, lakes and impenetrable rainforests. Tourists are attracted by inexpensive beach holidays, the opportunity to get acquainted with local traditions and ancient cities.
Who and why should come to Nicaragua
Nicaragua does not belong to the popular tourist destinations, but this does not mean that the country has nothing to offer curious travelers. The main wealth of this region is nature. The country of volcanoes and lakes, thanks to its unique tropical climate, attracts everyone who is interested in exotic flora and fauna.
The country has access to the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean. Beach lovers will appreciate white sand beaches for noisy youth companies (San Juan del Sur), secluded places for romantic couples or families with children (Long Bay, Montilimar). The Pacific coast was chosen by surfers. On the beaches of El Velero and Pochomil, high waves, a sea of drive and impressions await them.
In the ancient cities of Nicaragua, architectural monuments built during the arrival of the Spanish conquerors have been preserved. Local museums acquaint tourists with the traditions and peculiarities of this country.
Fishing enthusiasts can also come to Nicaragua. Lake Lago de Nicaragua is the largest freshwater reservoir in Central America. Here you can catch rare species of fish, as well as enjoy the colorful landscapes.
Cultural attractions and museums
Cathedral of Santo Domingo
The majestic temple was built in the 20s of the last century in Belgium, and then delivered by ship to the capital of Nicaragua. Such an unusual method was found by Pablo Dombache, a Belgian architect who lived in Nicaragua for many years.
The cathedral is a unique structure made of metal and concrete, which allowed it to survive two powerful earthquakes without much damage.
Aqualink Footprint Museum
This attraction will be of interest to lovers of history and antiquities. The expositions of the museum demonstrate traces of human feet and animal paws imprinted in lava layers. It is believed that they were trying to escape from a raging volcano.
Scientists say the footprints are over 6,000 years old. The museum also exhibits other unique artifacts found at different times in the country.
The construction of an architectural monument of the XVIII-XIX centuries lasted several decades. Upon opening, he received a blessing from Pope Pius IX. Today it is the largest temple in Central America.
In 2011, the building was included in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List. The cathedral should be visited for the statue of the Virgin Mary and to see the burial places of prominent figures of Nicaragua.
In the language of the Indians, the name of the island is translated as «two mountains.» There is some truth in this, since the island is an isthmus between two volcanoes. The island is a suitable place for lovers of ecotourism.
However, now the infrastructure has begun to develop here. Cafes and restaurants open on Ometepe, and locals are happy to take excursions to volcanoes, as well as to coffee and banana plantations.
Mombacho is located ten kilometers from Granada and is part of a national reserve. It is worth coming here to admire the unusual tropical plants and climb the observation deck near the volcano, where the tourist center is located. On the slopes covered with dense tropical forests, there are special trails for hiking.
But you can only go to the volcano accompanied by a local guide, as there is a high risk of meeting wild animals.
Paradise, consisting of the Big and Small Islands, is famous for its white sand beaches, the emerald expanse of the Caribbean Sea, numerous palm trees and mango trees. The islands are known for their rich underwater world, so divers often come here. There is also the opportunity to go windsurfing, snorkeling, water walks.
Due to its seclusion, the unspoiled Little Corn Island is an ideal place for newlyweds to spend their honeymoon here.
The place, which is called the «lungs of the country», is just an hour’s drive from the capital. The size of the rainforest zone is second only to the Amazon rainforest. You can come here for a walk among the relic forests and get acquainted with representatives of wildlife: jaguars, tapirs, cougars, monkeys and other animals.
Canyon de Somoto
The canyon is a deep river gorge passing through ancient rocks. It is noteworthy that the place was discovered only in 2004 by geologists from the Czech Republic. Today, descents along the rocks and visits to caves are held in the gorge, where a huge number of bats settled. The most active and courageous tourists usually agree to such entertainment.
Notable buildings and unusual places
Fortress of the Immaculate Conception
The fortification building, erected at the end of the 17th century, high on the mountain, is the most famous place in the city of El Castillo. The fortress survived many attacks, but survived and survived well to this day. Today, there is a museum on its territory, where you can see how the defenders of the citadel lived and what they did many centuries ago.
Selva Negra Mountain Resort
Today this place is known as a comfortable hotel located in an extremely picturesque place. But at the end of the 19th century, it was a coffee plantation. The estate was maintained by German immigrants. Now the plantation is gone, and the Mountain Resort has become a popular tourist attraction.
Rock paintings of El Tisei
There are many sheer cliffs in the Tisei Reserve. One of them is used by a local resident Don Alberto for his work. With the help of a special sword, he carves figures of people and animals, biblical characters on the rocks. Tourists visiting El Tisey are treated to Don Alberto’s treats of mangoes and lemons.
If you do not pay attention to the poverty of the population and the lack of a developed tourist infrastructure, and focus on the color of this picturesque town, you can get an excellent idea of the life of the province of Nicaragua. Ancient churches, shady parks, small houses with tiled roofs of the historical center invite tourists to relax and spend time with benefit.
The main attraction of the city is the Church of La Merced. By paying a dollar, you can go up to the observation deck, which offers a beautiful view of the city and its surroundings.
The second largest city in the country is famous for its churches and cathedrals, cozy parks for recreation, cafes and old streets where you can buy popsicles and other sweets. Despite the fact that Leon has repeatedly experienced various cataclysms, including earthquakes, he managed to retain his charm and grandeur of the past.
The small town is famous for Lake Apoyo and the Mombacho Volcano, which are nearby. In the historic center you can taste delicious local cuisine, visit workshops of folk crafts and order a painting from a local artist. People also come here to buy souvenirs in local shops.
Until the XIV century, this city played an important role in the history of the country. But the volcanic eruption put an end to the existence of civilization in these parts, completely destroying the city and burying it under a layer of lava.
Only in 1967, during excavations, the remains of buildings were discovered. Today they are included in the UNESCO heritage list as a colonial city that has not changed its appearance for several centuries.