Climbing Volcanoes & boarding down them, camping, rappelling, swimming, this trip is certainly for the adventurous. If you enjoy getting to know a country though adventurous activities and experiences then this is certainly the trip for you.
This is a suggested itinerary. Dates, stops & activities are all flexible.
14 Days:Apoyo Lagoon - Masaya - Granada - Ometepe - Matagalpa - Somoto - Esteli - León
Activities: Hiking, White Water Rafting, rappelling, camping, wildife, community engagement, nature, boat rides, bird watching, waterfalls, swimming.
Day 1: Welcome to the stunning land of lakes and volcanoes! You will be met in arrivals and immediately drive suoth to Apoyo Lagoon Nature Reserve. Shared by the provinces of Masaya and Granada. This impressive dormant cone last erupted about 20,000 years ago and has been filling with clear fresh water ever since. The interior, where the tropical dry forest meets the crystal-clear waters of the lagoon, is a nature reserve and home to more than 225 species of birds, mammals ans endemic species of fish.
Day 2: Hiking in the forest that surrounds the Apoyo Lagoon with a specialist guide is a magnificent way to observe flora and fauna. No less than 225 bird species have been documented in this area. You hike through tropical dry forest and may spot hummingbirds, golden orioles, toucans, and falcons. But you may also encounter howler- and white-faced monkeys, iguana's and the blue morpho butterfly.
Then it is on to Masaya Volcano National Park, one of the most popular volcanoes in the pacific region of Nicaragua due to its constant activity. It offers the unique experience of observing an active volcano up close, watching as boiling lava flows just a short distance below inside the volcano crater. (B)
Day 3:The island of Ometepe is situated in one of the world´s largest fresh water lakes, Lake Nicaragua. The two volcanoes on the island, Concepción and Maderas seemingly rise out of the water and create the islands iconic image as you approach form the water.
Y]After dropping your bags your Ometepe nature experience starts at the Peña Inculta nature reserve where lava rocks are overgrown by primary forest, home to white-faced monkeys, howler monkeys, squirrels, iguanas, bats and many birds. After hiking the reserve for approximately 45 minutes, you visit Hacienda Finca Magdalena, a community-run farm founded in 1888, where you get insight into the process of organic coffee cultivation. A further short hike brings you to a site with remnants of pre-Columbian times. Your last stop is Ojo de Agua, a pristine natural spring surrounded by dense forest. (B)
Day 4: Its time for your 1st Volcano hike!An early morning pick up takes you back towards Finca Magdalena, where the hike to the dormant Maderas volcano begins. The climb is quite steep and difficult, but the trail is well-kept but the reward is worth the effort. At the summit you can oversee the mystical crater lake wit inspiring views over the Island and beyond. (B/L)
Day 5: Granada or the "Gran Sultana" is one of Latin America's most beautiful colonial cities. This ancient town founded in 1524 on the shores of vast Lake Nicaragua is full of history and Spanish colonial charm and is famed as one of the oldest European settlements in the western hemisphere.
Once you have settles it will be time to get ready for you Kayaking adventure. As you navigate through the calm waters with your guide, be sure to keep an eye out for many species of birds and other wildlife that inhabit the lake and its surroundings. You'll also pass by local fishing communities and observe their daily island life. (B)
Day 6: Puma Trail: Situated in a beautiful cloud forest and home to a wide variety of vegetation and wildlife, a visit to Mombacho Volcano is a great way for any nature lover to spend the day. Drive to the top (1150 meters) of the volcano in a 4x4 vehicle. After a quick trip to the scientific station explore this impressive volcano on a guided walk. Wind through the Puma Trail, on one of the most beautiful and challenging hikes of Mombacho Volcano. (B)
Day 7: Early transfer from Granada to Matagalpa, where you will enjoy a fun white water rafting tour before heading to Peñas Blancas Massif area for a two night stay surrounded by nature. The rafting consists of a stunning 15 km ride that takes around 5 hours. The rapids are classified between 2-3 and 4, offering a perfect mix of crazy white water with plenty of opportunities to admire the forests and wildlife along the way.
After this adventure it is on to El Cuá , a small town located in northern Nicaragua. In its surroundings we find Wiwili, El Tuma-La Dalia and Jinotega, besides other communities. The region is well known for its mountains and abundant vegetation, including the Peñas Blancas Massif and Cerro Kilambe. The weather is cooler than the rest of Nicaragua and here you will be staying in basic accommodation but as part of a Biological station! (B/L/D)
Day 8: You will take a hike at the border between the provinces of Matagalpa and Jinotega, and part of Central America´s largest reserve, Bosawas. You encounter crystal clear rivers, water wells, large and small waterfalls, giant trees, and a wide variety of tropical plants as you make your way through the reserve, while the fog that seems to be everpresent adds mystery to this magical place. The reserve is inhabited by pumas, jaguars, ocelots, wild boars, deer, paca´s, sloths, monkeys and birds such as hummingbirds, wranglers and the rare resplendant quetzals.
Day 9:Transfer from Peñas Blancas Massif to Somoto Canyon for a camping adventure at this marvelous pristine area The main attraction of Somoto is the stunning canyon just outside the city, known as Namancambre. These rock formations of about 4 kms long can be discovered by rappelling, hiking and swimming.
The camping adventure starts with rappelling down 100 feet/30 meter of a high cliff while admiring the amazing view of the canyon beneath you; followed by activities such as swimming, walking and climbing through the longest river of Central America. Continue to the campsite, located in a local farm with a viewpoint looking over the landscape of Honduras and perfect for seeing the sunset and sunrise the next day. A delicious Nicaraguan meal will be prepared for you by a local chef, with the possibility to enjoy a campfire afterwards. Next day, the local chef will prepare an energizing breakfast for you. (B/L/D)
Day 10: After breakfast you will make you way up and out of the Canyon and back to civilisation as you drive on to Esteli, where you will have the rest of the day free to relax. Estelí is situated in the Northeastern part of Nicaragua, in a still relatively underdeveloped tourist area. The city is rich in history and cultural heritage and visitors will find lots to occupy their time here. The city used to be a refuge for Cuban cigar makers and this culture is still present here and can also be discovered in the citys museum.
Accommodation in: Hotel Los Altos (B/L/D)
Day 11: Mud & Tortillas; This experience involves a visit to boiling mud holes heated by the nearby volcanoes. Once you have explored this magical moonscape continue to a local home to participate in a local tortilla-making workshop; where you'll learn to make this traditional staple food on a woodstove. Once they have cooled, you'll get the chance to taste the freshest Nicaraguan tortilla of your trip before heading to the Colonial town of Leon.
Day 12: Enjoy an incredible adventure in León volcanoes and Asososca Lagoon. The journey starts with a visit to Cerro Negro, the youngest volcano in Central America, for a volcano boarding tour. After a tasty lunch in the nature reserve, the tour continues with a hike to volcano El Hoyo, where the campsite will be set for overnight and dinner. (B/L/D)
Day 13: Next morning, after breakfast, hike down the volcano towards Asososca Lagoon, known as El Tigre, to swim and relax before returning to León. Where you will have the rest of the day free to explore.(B)
Day 14: Sadly all good things come to an end… today it’s time to pack up and head to Managua airport for your on wards flight, leaving Nicaragua with lots of amazing memories and photos! (B)
Prices from: £2040 per person
Services included: hotels on shared room basis, meals, transfers and activities as mentioned, entry fees, English speaking guide, 24 hour assistance
Services not included: flights, drinks, tips and personal expenses.
This is a suggested itinerary. Dates, stops & activities are all flexible.
Best Time To Travel
Best time to visit: December - April
Dec – Apr sunny and dry but cooler than the Summer. Jun – Aug rain showers, hot and humid. Sep & Oct heavier rain, hot and humid.
Nov & May are a mix and great for avoiding other tourists