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Granada (Nicaragua)

176 bytes removed, 23:35, 22 June 2014
Small spelling error.
===By train===
The old train that once existed was shut down during the era of Violeta Chamorro. So, no, there's no possibility to take any train to get there. Nevertheless, you can have the chance to visit the old train station, which is used as a technical school sponsored by the Spanish Cooperation.
===By car===
Yes you can get there by rental car, which is often really expensive to hire, since imported cars are expensive too. The risk of theft is not so high, but it is advisable to park your car on places where a guard will watch your car. Expect to pay 10 to 20 córdoba (NIO) per night; all the guards are reliable. Most of the principal highways are in good excellent condition, however potholes and other obstacles can surprise you, so be alert. Secondary roads range from OK paved to horrendousgravel. The roads from the airport are good, then rather bad, then good - excellent on the most direct route.
From Costa Rica, take the Panamerican Highway, which leads from [[San José (Costa Rica)|San José]] through Liberia, the border crossing at [[Penas Blancas]], first bigger town in Nicaragua is [[Rivas]], after Nandaime take a right onto the Granada-Nandaime road. Look for Granada-related signs.
 
=== By taxi ===
You can hire a taxi from Managua to Granada or vice versa through [http://www.taximanagua.com Taxi Managua] for USD45.
===By bus===
Buses are available from From [[Managua on a quarter-hour basis 05]] buses and mini bus shuttle services depart regularly 5:00-22:00 from UCA (USD1University of Central America)terminal for around C$24-44 or from Mercado Huembes and will take about 1 hour. From [[Leon]], catch a direct Leon-Managua-UCA shuttle for NIO25.  Granada is easily reached by first-class buses from neighbouring Costa Rica and Honduras.
====From [[Costa Rica]]====
There are two main options, either take the chicken buses which costs half the price (USD10) and fuzz your way through, experience a lot of interesting sights and the heat or hop on one of the (often agonizingly) air conditioned coaches, which are comfortable, take you there in about 8-10 hours (border crossing might take a while, and you will have to deboard the bus twice for passports and customs) and cost USD20. The best options going from [[Costa Rica]] to Nicaragua are Central Line, TransNica and [http://www.ticabus.com/ Ticabus]. Back from Granada to Costa Rica you might as well take the Tica Bus or NICABUS. Just ask any taxi driver in whatever city you are in to take you to the Nica or TICABUS-station.
From [[Managua]], direct shuttles leave from the UCA terminal (University of Central America) for around NIO18 or from Mercado Huembes. From Leon, catch a direct Leon-Managua-UCA shuttle for NIO25.
You can take the Ticabus from San Jose, Costa Rica, to Granada. Simply ask the driver to let you off in Granada (They go through the city anyway) and once you start seeing beautiful cobblestone streets and old Spanish-inspired buildings you will know you're and Granada and you can get ready to get off. From the Ticabus dropoff, Do not take a taxi, the entire city and most hostels and hotels are within walking distance. Simply begin walking to your right and you will find this wonderful city.
===By taxi===
You can hire a taxi from Managua to Granada or vice versa through [http://www.taximanagua.com Taxi Managua] for USD45.  *Local taxis work on set prices : NIO10 by day and at night after 21:00, NIO20 per person, wherever you go within the towns borders.
===By bus===
Buses (old stylish US or Canadian school buses) go just about everywhere at about every time, you see them and if you slightly look like anybody wanting to go anywhere, be sure they'll load you on their bus. Another option are the '''mini buses''' which have a bit more set time and you can book in advance, they're more comfortable but cost a bit more.
===By carriage===
==See==
*'''Volcan Mombacho''' Lots to do on the volcano...great hikes, a real cloud forest at the top, a couple of zip lines operators, tour of the coffee plantation and processing facility is. And the most spectacular views. Cooler temperatures than Granada city make it is great place in the hot months. Just 20 minutes from the city. Mombacho Lodge is about half way up and has nice rooms so you can get a real feel for the mountain with a visit that is more than just a few hours...they do a great night hike and are right on the treetop monkey highway.
[[Image: 2644371740083883283EdeuWy_ph.jpg|thumb|A view from the Parque Central towards the Cathedral]]
 
*There are '''6 main churches''' : the Cathedral, La Merced, Guadalupe, Xalteva, San Francisco and María Auxiliadora, which all have interesting historical backgrounds and are in very different states.
*'''Fuerte La Polvora''' is an 18th century fort (built in 1748) that's open for tours. A few historical exhibits are available on the main level, you can climb the towers for views of the quiet city streets, or wander through the lovely courtyard.
*'''Lake Cocibolca''' (also known as Lake Nicaragua), is the 10th largest fresh-water lake on earth and is inhabited by Bull Sharks, informally named the Nicaragua Shark. The beach area is not the safest area in town at night and comes with a rather unpleasant smell during the day. However, during the day this is a nice place to catch a breeze, and there are many Nicaraguan families that come here to pass the time. Vendors pass selling all kinds of food. Tours of the islands are available from Puerto Asese, near the pleasant Asese restaurant (known for its boneless fish).
*A bit further along the shore is the '''Centro Turistico''', a park like area complete with bars and restaurants. It's a bit cleaner then than the beach right down from the city.
*The '''local market''' is definitely worth a glimpse, it's chaotic little market stands where you can get almost everything. The market is open everyday except holidays around and in the old Market hall, you can't miss it.
*The '''Central Park''' with the Cathedral and the Colonial houses surrounding it. The lively middle of town with a lot of handicrafts or snacks to buy, or just sit down at a bench and watch the city and its people.
*The streets themselves with their charming Colonial coloured houses Take a '''boat tour''' of the Isletas. Boats leave from the marina at Puerto Asese. Your guide will tell you how all the islands are always worth a wander themselvesowned by millionaires. You will even visit an old fort that is on the island. Not to mention you will see adorable monkeys that live in the tree.
*Take a '''boat tour''' of the Isletas. Boats leave from the marina at Puerto Asese. Your guide will tell you how all the islands are owned by millionaires. You will even visit an old fort that is on the island. Not to mention you will see adorable monkeys that live in the tree.
*<see name="Mi Museo" alt="" address="Calle Atravesada 505" directions="In front of Bancentro" phone="+505 2552 7614" url="http://www.mimuseo.org" hours="Daily 08:00-17:00" price="Free" lat="" long="">Private collection of over 5,000 Nicaraguan Pre-Columbian ceramics.</see>
 
*The streets themselves with their charming Colonial coloured houses are always worth a wander themselves.
==Do==
*[http://www.artesanic.com''' ArtesaNic Cigars'''] del Puente Papa Q 2 1/2 al Oeste" From Parque Central Granada, 5 1/2 blocks going West on Calle la Libertad 2552-6496. Daily 10:00-22:00. Offers an impressive selection of premium cigars from Esteli, martini and whisky bar, posh lounge area with high-speed Wi-Fi. Has an interesting offering of Nicaraguan Art and Ceramics. Lounge, Jazzy Atmosphere.
*Rent a bike from '''BicimaximoMapache''' located in the central parkon Calle Cisne, next to The Cathedral2nd left off Calle La Calzada. You can bike to the Laguna de Apoyo or to Puerto Asese and see the entire city in one day. They even offer packages that include a bagged lunch from '''The Garden Cafe''' - USD12 for a bike rental and lunch.
*'''¡Wow Tours!'''. Take a '''boat tour''' around the hundreds of ''isletas'' in the Lake Nicaragua. ¡Wow Tours! is a Nicaraguan owned company that offers community tours of the islands, where you will meet the local people who inhabit them.
*'''Bluemountain Horsebackriding'''. Discover local farming and the area around the Mombacho-Volcano on horseback.
*Get happy with Mangos! You can buy heaps of Mangos at the market for about 1 Cordoba each (which equals about a 17th of a US dollar).
*Take a bus to [[Masaya]] and visit the local and giant hand craftmarket (good advice: better see the new than the old market, same stuff, half the price).
*Get a very inexpensive table or seated '''massage''' at '''Seeing Hands Blind Massage''', located in Computadoras de Granada, Calle 14 de Septiembre, opposite 1/2c. south of the Bearded Monkey hostalFirehall (Bomberos).
*You can also go to the '''Volcano reserve''' and watch over the wide land, see the '''Managua lake''' and maybe get some stinky smoke in your lungs and be happy about the beautiful nature surrounding the Volcano.
*The ''Laguna de Apoyo''' is a deep Volcano crater lake and presumed to have the clearest water in Nicaragua, you can swim and even snorkel in there. Overnight stays with either the Bearded Monkey San Simian Resort or the Oasis are arrangeable tooLaguna Beach Club can be arranged. A Taxi from Granada should cost around 15US. . You can alternatively take the bus to Managua and get dropped of at the entrance to the Laguna de Apoyo. From there you can take a taxi (USD4) or bicycle along a dirt road without traffic. Down the hill on foot and bathing nude in the wonderful scenery.
*'''Local cinema''' at the Hostel named "Bearded Monkey", which shows two movies each day for only about 1USD entry-fee, has a really good selection of movies too, for friends of independent cinema, they rent DVDs all day long.
*'''The Choo-Choo train''' There's that weird train that goes all around town, originally for kids, but hey, great fun, it plays the latest reggaeton-tunes over and over again and it only costs five cordobas. Hop on whenever you find it.
*'''Casa de los Tres Mundos''' (''Casa de Leones''),The Foundation "Casa de los Tres Mundos" is an institution created to initiate, support and promote cultural projects in Nicaragua and Central America. Besides these artistic, musical and educational activities, which emphasize support for the poorer segments of Nicaraguan society, the foundation finances and coordinates an integrative rural development project in Malacatoya.
*'''Horse and carriages''' circle the city centre.
*'''Live music at Restaurant Imagine''' One street north of 1st left off Calle la Calzada, going towards the lake on Calle la Calzada from the Cathedral turn left first block (right after Pasta PastaCafe de Arte). One of the only places playing live classic rock (unplugged version) in the city. Live music starts at around 21:00 9PM almost every day of the week. Check the sign posted on the door daily to see who is playing. Very relaxed atmosphere and great food although a little bit pricey. No cover charge.
*<do name="ChocoMuseo" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="http://chocomuseo.com/" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Take a free tour of the Museum learning where chocolate comes from and the history of the evolution of chocolate.Get a hands-on lesson of how to make your own chocolate in a Chocolate Workshop for USD17. They have a great all-you-can-eat buffet brunch for USD6/person that includes plenty of chocolate from crepes, pancakes, banana milkshake, and your regular US and Nicaraguan breakfast favourites. Call at least one day ahead if you are in a large group. For the extreme chocolate enthusiast, the Museum and Factory also offers tours to a cacao plantation on the Mombacho Reserve. You also get a chance to swim in the thermal waters, see the Isletas and ride on horseback. Tour cost USD65 on horseback, USD55 to hike.</do>
*[http://spanishdale.com Spanish Dale!]is located in the heart of Granada, in the charming Hotel Spa Granada. The school boasts a team of Nicaraguan teachers educated and trained in all facets of Spanish grammar, direct and dynamic teaching methods and in effective student/teacher interactions.
*The local [http://www.granadanicaraguaspanishschool.com Red Cross] is a good option, since you can buy one-on-one Spanish lessons from them and so support them. For more options look around for flyers.
*[http://spanishschoolcenac.com "CENAC" Spanish School] is also a great option where you can learn Spanish with native speakers, in a country with much to discover and friendly people. Their goal is to teach Spanish as a second language, so that visitors to Nica can understand the culture and customs of the country. The school boasts 25 years of experience and local knowledge. Located 3 blocks east of the old hospital on Calle La Libertad.
==Eat==
There are tons of many street-vendorsquesillos, selling hot dogstamales, revueltas, carne asada, or local specialities specialties such as gallo pinto (rice & beans), fried plaintains, nacatamales, bajo (yucca, plantain, beef mix). You can have it all between 5 and NIO5-15 cordobas. But keep in mind that the standard of cleanliness can vary. The local speciality specialty is '''Vigoron''': cabbage, tomatoes, onions, and fried pork rind (or roast pork) on mashed yucca for NIO25 from the kiosks in the parque central. Great value (provided you are not a vegetarian).
*<eat name="Las Jarras" alt="" address="Calle Libertad, piedra bocona 25 metros al oeste" directions="From Central Park, 2 1/2 blocks up Calle Libertad" phone="8582-4943" url="" hours="" price="USD2.50-4" lat="" long="">Widely considered the best place in Granada to enjoy "frito." Chicken, beef or pork, marinated and char-grilled to perfection, served on a bed of fried plantains, and topped with salad, with optional side orders of gallo pinto and fried cheese. The portions are hearty, to say the least. In addition to the tables on the street, there's a nice interior patio with a bar.</eat>
*<sleep name="Mombacho Lodge" alt="" address="Mombacho Volcano Granada" directions="Past park entrance about 1 mile and follow signs" phone="+505 8499 1029" url="http://www.MombachoLodge.com" hours="" price="USD85" lat="" long="">New lodge tucked away in the forest on the way to the top of the volcano. New private cabins with all comforts but in tune with the surroundings. Bar and restaurant. Monkeys in the trees, miles of trails, night wildlife tours.</sleep>
{{sleeppricerange|budget|midrange|splurge}}
==Contact==
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