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Nicaragua is a country defined by the majesty of its natural environment. Volcanoes soar above enormous lakes and the white sandy beaches extend for kilometres along its Pacific coast. The capital is Managua, a bustling urban centre with that special something that visitors will only discover when they wander from the busy central district. Naturally, travellers can't miss the historic places like the National Museum, the Old Cathedral and the Rubén Darío National Theatre. However, for a completely satisfying experience, guests of the best hotels in Managua are recommended to stray from the beaten tracks.
Travellers are likely to discover some authentic local colour, watching Los Diablitos dance, for example. This is a street show with a group of boys dressed up with devil masks dancing to the rhythm of traditional music. Taking a stroll down the Avenida Bolívar, which is the main thoroughfare of the city, travellers will find themselves beneath 22 tree sculptures, whose twisted yellow branches shine with hundreds of little lights both night and day. And let us not forget the giant portrait of the former Venezuelan president, Hugo Chávez, which beams from a roundabout next to three of these trees. The Managua Lake promenade is a very interesting place for a walk; you can enjoy an aperitif, have an after-dinner drink and feel like a giant, as there is a miniature replica of the city there. Visitors can stroll through the scaled-down version of the beautiful monuments in Managua.
The stroll could finish around the Roberto Huembes Market, a handicraft market next to the central bus station. There, travellers will find beautiful Nicaraguan hammocks, textiles, paintings and leather goods. Anyone looking for a genuine python-skin bag will find it here.
Guests at hotels in Nicaragua who want to explore Spanish colonial architecture will find it in Granada. Located on the banks of Lake Nicaragua, the largest lake in Central America, this town enchants visitors with its coloured buildings, which date back to the 17th century. A walking tour passes six churches and an old fortress. A climb up the bell tower of the La Merced Church offers panoramic views over the town, Lake Nicaragua and Mombacho Volcano National Park. Adventurous visitors can walk right up to the edge of the volcano crossing fields of petrified lava and meadows of wild flowers. The bravest visitors can fly across the forest on zip lines. Visitors can take a boat trip on the huge lake to visit to an archipelago of 350 islands and enjoy a tour of the biggest island, Ometepe, where twin volcanoes create a majestic profile. In addition to the luxuriant vegetation that surrounds the area, visitors will discover places of archaeological interest, with the 1,700 petroglyphs that decorate the volcanic rocks. It appears that the island was as attractive to its pre-Columbian inhabitants as it is to people nowadays.
Some of the best hotels in Nicaragua are located in this peaceful stretch of the Pacific coast, where the waves break on white sandy beaches lined with palm trees. Here, the hotels offer privacy for romantic breaks, family holidays and business meetings. Guests who choose an all inclusive package can enjoy all the advantages. These hotels in Nicaragua are conveniently located one-hour's drive from Managua and offer enormous swimming pools, luxury restaurants and sports activities. Winding paths lead through tropical gardens to private bungalows, where guests can relax in perfect seclusion. There is also a casino to enjoy, which used to be the mansion of Nicaragua's previous ruling family, the Somozas. The dictators fled in 1979, but the 80-hectare property still remains a paradise by the sea.