This is a retrospective post from the beginning of year 2014,
when I was looking for new destinations not far from Miami!

As it quite often happens to me in the end of January I was looking for a place to go from Miami for a week or so. And this time I decided that Nicaragua will be it. Initial plan included 10 days, but later on I shortened trip to 7 days.

Granada

My trip started and finished in Managua Airport. But Managua itself wasn’t in the itinerary as there are not much stuff to see there. Right after arrival to Nicaragua I took a bus to Granada.

Granada is the oldest colonial city in Nicaragua. It is located on the north west side of the Lago Nicaragua. I spent the afternoon exploring the city – Central Park, Cathedral, local markets, etc. The city is very pleasant just to walk around.

Masaya Volcano

On the next day I took a tour with local Tierra Tour company to Lake Nicaragua Islets. In the morning shuttle bus picked my up from the hostel and with group of other tourist brought to the pier at Lake Nicaragua. There we were divided into two boats and rode around the lake. Unfortunately it wasn’t that spectacular to post some pictures, but it was nice.

The second activity for the day was much more spectacular in my personal opinion. It was evening trip to Masaya Volcano. It is an active volcano with constant flumes of sulfuric smoke spewing from the vents in its main crater. Lava flows have not occurred in over 200 years, although explosions are fairly frequent.

Isla de Ometepe

After nice visit to Masaya Volcano I moved to an island that has two big volcanos – Isla de Ometepe. The way a little bit complicated – first I took a bus to Rivas, then kind of taxi to San Jorge and then a ferry to the island. Finally in two hours I arrived to Moyogalpa – a nice harbour village. There I found some hostel, rented a bicycle and rode around the island looking for its wonders ;)

Volcano Conception

On the next I departed on a short but nice trip to the crater of Conception Volcano. All in total it takes about 8 hours roundtrip. The trail is pretty easy to find, but after the first half it is pretty steep with very strong winds.

Leon

After climbing Volcano Conception I rushed back to Moyogalpa and back to San Jorge to get in time for the last ferry and last bus to Granada. I wanted to get to Leon on the next day and the easiest way I think is to catch one of the shuttle buses. I bought a ticket from Tierra Tour for about 20 USD and on the next day departed to Leon.

León is one of the oldest cities in Nicaragua. It is named after León, Spain. After Granada, which is better preserved, León has the best colonial architecture in Nicaragua.

Volcano Boarding

And my last activity in Nicaragua but one of the most exciting ones – Volcano Boarding. It is one of the unique Nicaragua experiences. You can board down Cerro Negro, another active volcano, with a board.

There are two companies that run this kind of tours – Quetzaltrekkers and Tierra Tour. I chose Tierra as I already used them plus they claim to provide a suit that fully covers your body. And this, believe me, is important ;)

Full Itinerary

Miami - Managua
Managua Airport - Granada
Around Granada

Central Park, Cathedral, La Merced, Guadalupe, etc

Hostel Oasis Granada
Lake Nicaragua Isletas

Tour with Tierra Tour [20$]

Volcano Masaya

Evening tour with Tierra Tour [30$], it is possible to do trip on your own, but gives much more headache unless you have a car

Hostel Oasis Granada
Granada - San Jorge
San Jorge - Moyogalpa
Around Isla de Ometepe

Rent a bicycle and just go around as far as you can, many enjoyable places

Hostel in Moyogalpa
Climb Volcano Conception

Takes 8 hours return, strenuous in second half due to strong winds

Moyogalpa - San Jorge
San Jorge - Granada
Hostel Oasis Granada
Granada - Leon

Shuttle by Tierra Tour, 20$

Around Leon

León Cathedral, Iglesia de San Juan Bautista de Subtiava, and just around...

Hostel in Leon
Volcano Boarding

Volcano Boarding at Cerro Negro, by Tierra Tour [25$]

Hostel in Leon
Leon - Managua Airport
Managua - Miami