Granada – Laguna de Apoyo, León – Volcán Telica & Somoto Canyon

Granada – Laguna de Apoyo

08th – 11th of November 2013

After returning from the Isla de Ometepe I headed straight for Granada. I have to admit that after being on the road now for almost seven months in South and Central America, colonial towns don’t get me too excited any more. Granada is undoubtedly a nice city, but that wasn’t the main reason why I went there (nonetheless I did the obligatory sightseeing but it fell rather short).

What got me excited was the Laguna de Apoyo just outside of Granada, a beautiful crater lake with warm, crystal clear water creating the perfect location to relax and hang out for a while. I chose to stay at the hostel Paradiso (dorm: US$ 10 / 7,41 € pp), a nice little place which offers free kayaks, tubes to swim with and a float just off the shore. So if you go to Granada, make sure you don’t miss this beautiful little lake.

León – Volcán Telica

11th – 15th of November 2013

What can I say, another colonial town. Is it beautiful? Definitely! Did I go there because it is a colonial town? Hell no! But there are some stunning volcanoes in the area and if you want to go volcano boarding, this would be the place to do it. Everyone I spoke to who had done it kept raving about it, but for some reason I decided not to go. Instead I chose to climb the volcano Telica (Guided tour: US$ 35 / 25,93€ pp in a group of seven). Or in this case climbing really wouldn’t be the adequate description. It was more like a one hour stroll up the volcano after we had been taken most of the way to the top in the back of a Toyota Landcruiser.

Telica was very different to other volcanoes I had visited previously, simply because it was the first time in my life that I had had the chance to see red hot lava. As we got closer to the top we were already able to hear the pressure being released at the bottom of the crater which sounded very much like a jet engine. After sneaking a peek over the edge of the 120m vertical crater wall with the lava at the bottom of the crater, we headed around the volcano to watch the sunset. Returning to the crater rim for a glance at the lava in darkness was, of course, obligatory.

I much preferred this tour over another day of sightseeing in a colonial town. 🙂

Somoto Canyon

15th – 16th of November 2013

The final and most exciting stop on my trip through Nicaragua was the Cañon de Somoto. I am a very big fan of hiking and swimming through canyons as well as jumping off cliffs, hence I had been looking forward to this place ever since I had heard about it. The way other travelers had described it to me made it sound exactly like my kind of playground – I was not disappointed!

The canyon is located in the North-West of Nicaragua in between the town of Somoto and the border to Honduras. The fact that this place is not (yet) a major tourist attraction made it even more special. Of course you’ll meet other tourists along the way but especially on a weekday and in the upper part of the canyon you won’t meet too many other people. Most of the guides belong to one family that lives close to the entrance of the canyon and runs the tour for only US$ 25 / 18,52 € pp, lunch included.

We reached the Río Coco after a short 1,5 km hike and started making our way down the river through the canyon with various stops along the way. Drifting downstream and enjoying the breathtaking views of the vertical canyon walls was simply mind blowing. Along the way we reached a couple of cliffs with jumpable heights between 2-20m. The fact that there were no intermediate steps in between 10-20m made the final jump a bit scarier than I had thought at first. Thankfully the guide jumped first – at least that way I knew for sure that the water was going to be deep enough. 🙂

After drifting and swimming down the river a bit more, we reached a boat which took us to the exit of the canyon. After a short 1,5km walk back to the family farm of our guide we were greeted with an amazing lunch which concluded one of the best days I had had in Central America to that point. This place is absolutely amazing and you must be soft in the head if you go to Nicaragua without visiting the Cañon de Somoto.

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1 Comment

  1. this reminds me of my route in Nicaragua! I did pretty much the same thing! 🙂


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