Day 304: Have a cigar

The land around the northern Nicaraguan city of Estelí is considered ideal for growing cigar tobacco and the region is home to several farms and cigar factories.  The small town provided refuge for Cuban cigar makers who fled their country during the Cuban Revolution and has become one of the most important cigar-producing cities in…

Day 303: Thanks for the lift

We decided to visit the eco-lodge, organic farm, and bird-friendly coffee estate of Selva Negra after getting a suggestion from someone at our hostel.  Opting for the indirect but more economical public bus route, it took us more than an hour to traverse the 11 kilometers and arrive at the country’s most famous hotel.  The…

Day 302: Rain delay

After a brief but thorough stroll through downtown Matagalpa, we headed south of town to the Cerro Apante Natural Reserve.  We were told that the short, easily accessed hike leads to the best views of the city from a nearby mountaintop.  We were surprised when an organized 10-year-old greeted us at the entrance and charged…

Day 301: Pearl of the North

Matagalpa is the capital city of the mountainous department with the same name and has diverse urban and natural attractions along with year-round spring like weather.  The city was built on a hilly terrain that is encircled by mountains and the cool climate was a welcomed change for us after feeling the heat of the…

Day 300: That’s some lava

There are a couple of places in Nicaragua where night time hikes provide the opportunity to peak over a volcano’s crater and get a glimpse of lava.  Telica is an active volcano about 30 kilometers from Leon and has a large crater 120 meters deep and 700 meters in diameter.  We talked to a guy…