The Most Epic Hikes to Take in Nicaragua

View from Telica, Nicaragua
View from Telica, Nicaragua | © Guillaume Baviere / Flickr
Nicaragua is home to some spectacular scenery, including a huge number of volcanoes. Here are some of the best hikes that will allow you to appreciate the incredible natural beauty of this Central American nation.


One of two volcanoes on the island of Ometepe, this one is the more difficult to tackle. It’s incredibly steep, and the upper sections require tiring scrambles up volcanic scree. Remember to pack a windcheater, because the wind at the top will chill you to the bone.

Volcanic landscape of Ometepe Island, Nicaragua © Svetlana Bykova / Shutterstock


In the far north of Nicaragua on the Fonseca Gulf, this volcano affords some crazy views over the sea. You need to climb through dense vegetation to get to the lip of the crater, where you can enjoy the view and then continue down to the crater lake for a cooling dip.

Sunset in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua © Bruce Thomson / Flickr

Cliffs in San Juan del Sur

If you’re in the surf town of San Juan del Sur and fancy stretching your legs, there is a good hike that begins in the centre of town. Head off on the trail that starts behind the fish market and follow it along to the lighthouse for great views over the bay. On the way back, follow the signs on a side trail that leads to an old fort that was built during the 1850s.


This volcano is part of a national park that protects the cloud forest, a habitat that is rich in biodiversity. Take the longest trail, a three-hour hike that will take you to an amazing viewpoint.

Miraflor National Park

Found in the northern province of Esteli, this amazing national park contains cloud forest, rivers and waterfalls. It’s an undiscovered gem through which you can take day hikes or multi-day trips. You are required to take a guide, but all of the profits go back into the local community.

San Ramon Waterfalls on Ometepe Island, Managua, Nicaragua © Henryk Sadura / Shutterstock

San Ramón waterfall

This is one of the best things to do on the island of Ometepe. Set off from the village of San Ramón and follow the trail up the slopes of Maderas volcano until you reach the impressive 60-metre (197-foot) San Ramón falls.


If you are staying in the city of Leon, it’s easy to get to this volcano. It’s two to three hours’ drive from town along a winding road to the trailhead, and then a fairly easy walk to the crater of one of the most active volcanoes in Nicaragua.