Summit the Masaya Volcano
Nicaragua › Masaya, Nicaragua
Added by Brandon Eckroth
An international adventure with amazing scenery.
The most memorable adventure of this truly unforgettable trip to Nicaragua was the day we hiked the Masaya Volcano. By truck or car, you have to ascend the steep incline of the mountains to get to the entrance to Masaya Volcano National Park. It is possible to hike up, but the hike is long and steep (the height of the volcano is just over 2,000 feet).
All trails are guided. They vary in distance between 0.8 and 3.6 miles, and tour prices range from C10 to C20 (córdoba is the currency; C20 works out to about $0.77) per person. The volcano erupts at least once a week, sending small boulders to scatter themselves among the valley below, so more often than not, smoke hangs in the air, creating a remarkable atmosphere. We began the ascent up a winding path through the rock fields that were a result of the constant eruptions.
The hike to the edge of the crater takes about an hour. At the crater's edge, the smell of sulfur is potent, and dense smoke rose can be seen rising from the vibrant orange lava. Be sure to take some time exploring the edge; the views are particularly spectacular at sunset. This is most definitely a sight to see if you are ever in Nicaragua.
- Sturdy shoes
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Did this many years back, but it was one of the most memorable experiences during my tine in Nicaragua. You can arrange to sand board down one of the faces of the mountain, at a lower level. Extremely fun! :)
Up close and personal
As Brandon said and his pictures show you can get right up to the rim of Masaya. If you're lucky the wind will blow through and give you a decent view of the crater. I would like to add a little stronger warning to the smell than given though. Basically, the sulfur is so strong be ready to feel like someone farted in your mouth for the rest of your day. It's pretty brutal, so if you're really sensitive I'd make it a quick stay.
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