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Activities & Transport
- Bird Watching
- Zip Lining
- Wildlife Watching
- Car with driver
Main travel focus
In depth Eco Adventure
- Day 4: Walk through a rain forest packed with unique biodiversity
- Day 6: Zip your way through the tree-tops of a cloud forest
- Day 7: Walk right into Masaya volcano's thrilling night sights and sounds
- Day 9: Kayaking past tropical birds and through panoramic views of the Ometepe volcanoes
Here are some names you may not know yet: the San Juan River, Granada, Ometepe Island, Apoyo Lagoon and Big and Little Corn Island. These names may sound a little strange now, but, by the end of this amazing exploration of Nicaragua, they will be like dear old friends. Nicaragua is packed with unique and diverse history and nature, all the more special for being somewhat off the heavily-beaten tourist track. This trip displays all the natural treasures Nicaragua has been hiding from the world, and also how to best preserve these secrets for future generations. Nicaragua needs to be seen, and this is the way it needs to be seen.
- Airport meet & greet
- Lodgement at hotels as mentioned or similar
- Dinner on Day 4
- Flight: Managua - Corn Island (RT)
- Flight: Managua - San Carlos (RT)
- Tours mentioned
- Services of English-speaking guide during guided tours
- Ferry Tickets (1st Class)
- Information package with maps, vouchers and detailed itinerary
- Entrance fees
- VAT / taxes
- International flights
- Meals other than mentioned
- Migration fees
- Personal expenses
- Optional tours/activities
- Tips for porters
Example Trip to customize
Your Nicaraguan arrival
Touchdown in Nicaragua! As soon as you're through customs, a friendly guide will meet you to personally chauffeur you to your comfy Managua hotel, so you can sit back and relax.
Taking El Castillo
On the shores of the beautiful San Juan river, you'll find the little town of El Castillo, home to the venerable old Fortress of the Immaculate Conception. Its surrounds are absolutely packed with biodiversity, and this is one of the reasons you'll be flying off for here today. Check into your luxury hotel, and check it all out.
Take your time in El Castillo
El Castillo has a long history, and - arrrr! - thar be pirates involved! The truly impressive fortress was built to protect Lake Nicaragua's port from maruading English pirates, and although the pirates are long gone, there are still plenty of things to attract those from across the seas. Just walking down the cobblestone streets makes you feel like you're back in the times of yore, and this feeling is enhanced by checking out the handy little museum. Today is all about you reliving this piratical past, and perhaps venturing out into the rich natural ecosystems surrounding it.
An animal-packed tour of Indio Maiz Reserve
After spending a day on the banks of the San Juan, it's time to get right on top of it, as you take a beautifully scenic boat ride off to the Indio Maiz Reserve. This reserve is an important refuge for scores of rare local species, and your subsequent three-hour walk through the rainforest will make this rather obvious. Your destination is the secret hideaway of the Sabalos Lodge, where you'll be treated like a jungle king.
Granada's colonial charms
This morning, you're back on a boat, baby; as you head to the curious little port of San Carlos. From San Carlos, you'll fly off to Managua; but this isn't your final destination, because then you'll be off to another colonial treasure, the charming city of Granada. Here is where you'll rest your head for the night.
Flying through a cloud forest
Get ready, for today you'll be flying through the air past the greatest of trees. You'll be zipping through the lush green treetops from platform to platform, reaching a height of 100 feet above the canopy floor.
This is all happening in the Mombacho Volcano Natural Reserve, an enchanting cloud forest home to a majestic - though dormant - volcano. As you're zipping along, keep an eye out for glimpses of such amazing species as howler and white-faced monkeys, red-eyed tree frogs, Mombacho salamander, and deer. You'll also probably get an eye-full of some of the huge variety of orchids this climate yields. The views of Mombacho Volcano and Lake Nicaragua's valley are nothing short of breathtaking. This is the way to do Nicaragua, friends.
Crawl into the crater's mouth
The highlight of today's itinerary is definitely at night, when the Masaya Volcano puts on quite the show. It will all start a little before sunset, when you make your way up to the crater. Flocks of bright green parakeets (chocoyos) will pass overhead, heading back to their in-crater nests. Somehow, these birds have adapted to withstand the sulphurous fumes around these parts, and have thus won for themselves quite the comfy little nook. As the birds return home, the bats will be coming out to play; swarms of these nocturnal creatures will be leaving their caves, providing the second act to tonight's performance.
The thrilling third act is to come. You'll then make it right to the top of the volcano, where you'll don helmets and torches to descend into the volcano's tunnel itself. Marvel at the intricate formations made by old streams of lava; and then look inside the crater's mouth itself, where you'll see the crater formed just in 2006. You might even catch a distant glimpse of the lava itself, depending on how dense the smoke is at the time. It's not every day you get to look into the centre of the earth itself.
Ometepe Island's volcanic secrets
Once you're done with today's sumptuous breakfast, you'll be heading from colonial to times much more distant, as you're ferried from Granada's charm to the beauty and mystery of Ometepe Island, at the heart of Lake Cocibolca. This island, formed from two volcanoes, holds many archeological secrets, as well as endless natural beauty, and you'll get to explore it all.
Kayaking Istiam river's delights
After your tasty breakfast this morning, you'll be off for a few hours of the best kayaking anywhere around. Head out on the Istiam river, and you'll be rewarded with close encounters with all kinds of tropical birds, monkeys, and reptiles. Ometepe's volcanoes will also be on fine display.
Hanging with the toucans at Apoyo Lagoon
Milennia ago, a Nicaraguan volcano erupted in great fury. Water quickly filled the massive resulting crater, and this was how Laguna de Apoyo was formed. This may be an interesting little story, but what has it got to do with you?
Well, it just so happens that you'll be witnessing the beautiful results of that ancient explosion, as you head to what is now an amazing natural reserve. Having the cleanest water of any of the many Nicaraguan lakes, there's plenty to do here. You can spend your time at one of the hotels lakeside, or take a walk on the gentle wild side, where you'll come face-to-face with the enormous biodiversity of this region, including monkeys, hummingbirds and toucans. Toucans? Yes, youcans!
Get more Corn in your diet
Things - and not just the turns of phrase - are about to get a bit cornier. Big Corn and Little Corn aren't the names of Native American chiefs, but actually two islands 80 k's off Nicaragua's Carribean coast. You'll fly to Big Corn, and then have the rest of the day to soak up this island paradise's sun, sand crystal-blue water. Corn never tasted so good.
Corn Island paradise
Wake up in Big Corn luxury, dig into your delicious breakfast, and then do whatever you well please for the rest of the day. Whatever you do here, you're sure to be well pleased. The beaches are stunning, and the perfect spot for a spot of fishing, snorkeling or diving. Relax all day, and then party it up at night. If you happen to be here on a Sunday, you should really check out a local baseball match, quite the striking event.
Today, you'll bid a fond farewell to your beloved Corn, and fly back off to Managua and your comfy hotel for the night.
Today marks the end of your Nicaraguan adventure, but just the beginning of your love affair with the country. Ponder this as you board your plane back home. You might just make it back this way again soon!