Exploring Nicaragua's Volcanoes

Posted by Adam McGeehan on Nov 23, 2015 12:59:37 PM

Volcanoes, who doesn’t love them?  They're arguably some of the most interesting geological structures on the planet. For many, volcanoes are a fairly foreign and rare occurrence, but some areas are much more abundant with volcanoes than others. Nicaragua, for example, is home to 19 volcanoes, many of them active. Here are some of the most intriguing ones. 

volcano nicaragua

Telica
Telica is a highly active volcano located in the northern region of Nicaragua, about an hour north of the capital city of Managua as well as an hour inland from the beach. It is one of the most active volcanoes in the country, and in fact a reported eruption of Telica occurred on September 23rd!  In addition to hiking Telica, one can enjoy bubbling mud pits in the nearby town of San Jacinto, located at the base of the volcano.

Masaya Volcano National Park
One of the coolest natural wonders in Nicaragua is the Masaya Volcano. This volcano, which is at the center of the Masaya Volcano National Park, the first national park of Nicaragua, is a stunning 2083ft. high, almost half a mile tall. Naturalists can hike all the way to the top, winding up through the volcano’s face until they eventually reach the top. And for those who want the beautiful view but don’t want to put in the work, there is a drivable road leading to the top. It’s not just the scenic view that makes this volcano such an attractive adventure prospect, it is also the local fauna. The Green Parakeets have adapted to be able to live not just near Masaya, but actually inside the volcano!  Right around sunset, these birds return to their nests which are built in the interior of the still active volcano. 

nicaragua volcano

Concepcion and Maderas
Now imagine an island…in the middle of a lake…with two volcanoes in the middle of the island!  These are the volcanoes Conception and Maderas, located on the island of Ometepe in the middle of lake Nicaragua. Ometepe is an hourglass-shaped island in the middle of Lake Nicaragua that was formed by these two ash-and-debris spewing monsters. They loom over the island on each end, like some sort of monolithic stone parents to Ometepe. Each is hike-able. Concepcion reaches a height of 5300 feet, while the slightly smaller Maderas goes up to 4600 feet.

San Cristobal
Last, but certainly not least, we have the volcano San Cristobal, colloquially known as El Viejo. At 5725 feet, this is the tallest volcano in all of Nicaragua. It is also one of the most active. It’s most recent eruption was in 2012, but it has had some sort of recorded eruption almost every year between then and 1997. Most of the activity was plumes of smoke and some rocks shooting out. It’s safe to say, this is a highly active volcano.

Adam McGeehan

Written by Adam McGeehan

Adam is a recent graduate of Allegheny College. There he majored in Economics with a minor in Spanish. He has always been interested in traveling abroad and is thrilled to have recently taken up residence in Managua, Nicaragua to work as an intern for ECI Development. He is excited to take in all of the culture of this wondrous nation.

Topics: Natural Attractions in Nicaragua