Day 348 | Nicaragua | Granada | The Hills are Alive with the Flow of Lava

Happy Birthday Ryan James!

Today was the standard, get out and amongst it and get to know your city!! And why not start right next door at Iglesia La Merced. Yet another beautiful church we can add to those we have seen. This one also you could climb up the bell tower to grab some great views over the town.

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The ageing effect always manages to add so much charm to these old churches

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Views from the bell tower

From here it was a wander through the main centre of town down to the water of the Lago Cocibolca AKA Nicaragua Lake which is the largest lake in Central America, though a lowly 19th when it comes to the whole world.

Wandering back up the street and away from the lake we headed to San Francisco Convent. For a small fee we were able to enter the church and have a look around (it is one of the oldest churches in Central America). There was a creepy skeleton just hanging out in a hole in the floor – not quite sure what the go was there?!? We then wandered next door with the aim of having a look at the museum there, however once we saw the price decided against it! LOL!

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The convent from the outside

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Beautiful steps leading to the museum

Then it was back to the area around our hostel to the ChocoMuseo because…free chocolate samples – enough said! Disappointingly I wasn’t a massive fan of the chocolate, it was a little bit intense and crumbly and almost burnt tasting for my liking.

Back at the hostel we checked our messages as we had made plans to catch up with Kate & Matt later in the day so we could check out the Masaya Volcano together. So, we went and met them down at the tour company we had decided on, asked all the appropriate questions and booked ourselves in for the nights tour.

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Downtown Granada

All booked in we headed across the road for a cheeky beer at Nectar before heading back to our respective hostels to get organised for the nights tour.

Our tour basically consisted of driving up to the Masaya Volcano park entrance where you wait for 1-2 hours to be notified if they will open the park tonight (Note: as there is a bit of rain about at the moment the rain interacts with the lava and creates some toxic fumes, if it is unsafe they do not let you enter). Thankfully they did open the gates, it was a bit touch and go, however, they did open them and whilst there is only usually 20 minutes allowed that you can stay at the crater, tonight they cut this down to 15.

We were prepared before we went that the lava level is down quite a bit from where it was perhaps a year ago, however the 4 of us all decided we were still pretty keen to check it out and I’m so glad we did. Whilst I don’t think there is much ‘lava’ that you see per say, the red glow around the crater is pretty amazing. It was pretty cool just walking along the area of the viewing platform and seeing the view from various angles. Then alas it was time to go and get back in the van and driving back to Granada.

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That glow… (Here is where Anthony having a great camera benefits. These photos from the ole’ iPhone are pretty crappy, however Anthony managed to get some pretty amazing shots on the good camera with more detail of the reflective glow on the surrounding rocks)

Once back in town we all headed to a little place up the street for 2×1 burgers for dinner because…2×1 burgers – enough said! LOL!

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