Nicaragua People

Colonial city of Granada

Granada was founded on the shores of Lake Nicaragua (Lake Cocibolca) by Francisco Hernandez de Cordoba in 1524. This makes Granada, Nicaragua one of the oldest settlements in Central America. Francisco named Granada after his home in Spain.

Historically Granada was the sister capital of Central America to Antigua, Guatemala. During the colonial period Granada became one of the most important harbors in Central America. Granada had ports on the Atlantic, through Lake Nicaragua and on the San Juan River.

Granada horse-drawn carrieage The city is famous for being captured by many pirates. The most famous of whom was William Walker who set up residence in Granada and attempted to become the ruler of all of Central America. Walker set Granada ablaze before making his escape, destroying most of the ancient city and leaving only the famous words “Granada Was Here.”

Granada is at once both the oldest city on the continent and the most developed tourist destination in Nicaragua. The city is famous for its classic colonial architecture and postcard cathedrals.

Today Granada has an approximate population of 116,000 making it Nicaragua’s fourth largest city.

Granada is a warm city year round with a climate very similar to Managua. Granada has experienced a real estate boom similar to other tourist destinations throughout Nicaragua

Some consider this "colonial jewel" to be the future of Nicaraguan tourism, the vanguard of what could be; true, if one is holding up Antigua, Guatemala as the archetype. Most agree that the city's charm will never be taken over, many of the distinctive buildings are private homes of well-off, proud Nicaraguans who wouldn't think of giving up their piece of Granada. And there is a reason for Granada's recent boom.

It is a fascinating city - full of bright colors, violent history, lake breezes, and the sounds of horse-drawn carriages.

Granada Real Estate doors Granada Real Estate doors Granada Real Estate doors

Granada Real Estate

visit Granada's colonial churches Granada is the place to meet other vagabonds with whom you'll swap stories over a few liters of Victoria in the tropical shadow of Volcán Mombacho. This is also your base-camp for boat trips through the Isletas and canopy tours in the Mombacho cloud forest. There's even a ship to Ometepe and the Río San Juan--but hold your horses, bucko, and check into one of the funky hospedajes for a couple of nights.
Take in some Granada before going back to the wilds of Nicaragua. Nowhere else in the country will you find such an array of excellent restaurants set against a rainbow of architecture.

This is less a "city" than a large, relaxed colonial town, where most evenings find the people out on the sidewalks, talking and laughing. Walk the streets, tour the Churches, then enjoy a free concert in the park; there is much to love about Granada.

Contact Us if you want more information about Granada, Nicaragua.

Tourist Attractions in Granada

Granada Real Estate sculptures
Stone sculptures

Granada Real Estate mombacho
Mombacho volcano behind Granada

Apoyo Lagoon Real Estate
View of Apoyo Lagoon

San Francisco Museum
The San Francisco Monastery is one of Granada's principal antiquities. It was founded in 1529 by Toribio Benevante, a Franciscan clergyman, and named the Immaculate Conception.

The museum has:
- A collection of photos of Granada taken at the end of the 1800s and the beginning of the 1900s depicting life before the advent of concrete and asphalt.
- Dioramas illustrating the daily life of the natives who lived in this area prior to the arrival of Columbus and tools and crockery uncovered from diggings around the city.
- A collection of zoomorphic statues found on the island of Zapatera where they were carved by the pre-Columbus natives between 800 and 1200 A.D.

Volcan Mombacho
This national park is located 10 kilometers outside of the city of Granada. The volcano has a height of 1400 meters and contains 700 hectares undisturbed cloud forest rich with Nicaraguan flora and fauna. There are a few trails, a small museum and restaurant at the top.

Here is the first zipline tour of Nicaragua. It's a beautiful experience between trees with an awesome view.

Laguna de Apoyo
This 48 square kilometer body of water is located a few kilometers outside of the city of Granada. It is clean, and a great place to spend a day swimming and soaking in the rays on one of the hotels or restaurants right on the shore.

It is a great place for scuba diving.

Las Isletas Tour
Las Isletas were formed when Mombacho blew it’s top around 20,000 years ago. The 365 island archipelago is found in Lake Nicaragua. The islands are inhabited by a few hundred campesinos and some wealthy Nicaraguans who have built luxurious vacation homes. The islands can easily be accessed by rented boat on the shores of the lake.

Isletas Granada Real Estate
365 islandsIsletas Granada Real Estate
Isletas de GranadaIsletas Granada Real Estate
House on an IsletaIsletas Granada Real Estate
Isletas port


Contact Us for more information about things to do and places to visit in Granada, Nicaragua.

Bars, discos and restaurants in Granada:

El Club
Upper end hostel/hotel/bar/restaurant.
Address: Piedra Bocona 1 cuadra oeste Calle La Libertad
Phone: 552-4245

Hotel Alhambra
Beautiful renovated hotel on the central park.
Phone: 552-4486

Hotel Colonial
Nice colonial style full service hotel.
Address: 10 yards west from the central park
Phone: 552-7299

Hotel Gran Francia
First class colonial style hotel and French restaurant
Address: The south east corner of the park.
Phone: 552-6000

Hostel Oasis
Nice backpacker hostel with a pool and good service.
Address: Calzado Sandak 50 mts oeste.
Phone: 552-8005

There are hundreds of restaurants in Granada, but these are the ones we recommend with their addresses and phone numbers.

La Gran Francia
Gourmet French Restaurant
Address: Across the street from hotel Gran Francia

This is a great Spanish Restaurant in a beautifully remodeled colonial building.
Address: Half a block east of Gran Francia
Phone: 552-6764

El Zaguan
Upscale Nicaraguan style Grilled Steak restaurant.
Address: Behind the Cathedral.
Phone: 552-2522

El Club
New European hotel with bar and restaurant. Unique mix of Asian, European and Nicaraguan food. See info under hotels.

As you walk from the park west towards El Club you will find 4 bars that are pretty fun on any given night:

First you find El Flamingo a local bar then a block further you come across.

La Fabrica and Café Nuit which are across the street from each other.