Granada, Nicaragua – Gigantic, unique: Lake Nicaragua

In fact the volcano’s emissions diminish this morning so that we can hike up to some viewpoints and to San Fernando crater without risking our health. This crater is covered with forest and green while Santiago has coloured bare walls and a huge hole from where steam escapes.

The city of Granada just 30 km east is situated at Lago de Nicaragua, a lake of superlatives. It is Central America’s largest lake with 8100 sq km. It houses Ometepe Island, the world’s largest island in a freshwater lake. Not yet enough: Lake Nicaragua is the only stretch of water on earth where freshwater sharks live. Probably they came from the Caribbean Sea via River San Juan and got accustomed to the lack of salt by time.

Like in most cities camping is difficult in Granada. The traveller-known Turicentro right on the lake shore allows access for 50 Córdoba per vehicle and camping as well. Unfortunately there is actually no possibility to do that. The one-way road is too narrow, the only option is in front of one of the restaurants (small lots only). The parking lot we were told to camp in the end of the Turicentro road is behind an open-air live discotheque. Besides the noise to be expected it doesn’t seem to be a good place to overnight. The man who runs the discotheque describes the site as absolutely not safe. We continue to drive down the road where we find a long and wide hard shoulder of gravel with beautiful lake view. It is not attended, as the place in the Turicentro would have been, and it would have been free of charge.

Turicentro Granada, unattended, N 11°55’31.9’’ W 85°56’30.1’’, 50 NIO, or right after at the lake, FOC, along the road, N 11°54’50.4’’ W 85°56’00.3’’.

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