Gems of Nicaragua

Discover Nicaragua's charming colonial cities, hike trails along the top of Mombacho Volcano with its breathtaking views, and relish a stay at one of the most exclusive boutique resorts in the world – a luxurious yet relaxed private estate by the ocean.

Country Information

Guatemala, Honduras & Nicaragua

Gems of Nicaragua Enrichment Series

(Countries Visited)

Guatemala, Honduras & Nicaragua

(Interest Type(s))

Romantic Getaways


Adventure Travel

(Tour Length)

8 Days

Tour Highlights

Starting at: $4,340
  • New copyExplore the charming and historic city of Granada
  • See the active crater of Masaya Volcano and hike on Mombacho Volcano with its breathtaking views
  • Venture out on a treetop canopy tour, sliding from platform to platform through lush jungle
  • Relax at Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa  on the Emerald Coast
  • Golf on a course designed by master  architect David McLay Kidd

Day 1: Managua, Nicaragua / Granada
Welcome to Nicaragua. Upon arrival in Managua, you proceed through Immigration and Customs. After claiming your luggage, exit the Customs Hall where a representative from Big Five will be waiting to greet you and transfer you to the colonial city of Granada. Founded in the year 1524, the town grew up along the shores of Lake Nicaragua. Named after the city of Granada, Spain, it echoes of another time with its colonial church architecture, narrow streets and large, colorful homes constructed around beautiful indoor patios. Hotel Plaza Colon

Day 2: Granada
This morning, you will discover Masaya Volcano National Park, Nicaragua’s first national park established in 1979. The park includes a beautiful volcanic lake, Masaya Lagoon. You will note the influence that volcanic activities have had in the shaping of the area. Only ten minutes from the entrance is the environmental interpretation center, a museum where you can see a model of the park, paintings by Nicaraguan artists that depict the history of the volcano.  Learn about tectonic plates and the effect they have on volcanic regions of the planet.  Continue your trip to the summit of this volcano to see the  Santiago Crater, active since 1946. Just fifteen minutes away, visit the Masaya arts and crafts market for local handmade hammocks, wood and leather goods as well as ceramics. Nearby, the tradition of fine ceramic artwork is carried on through the master artisans of San Juan de Oriente.  This evening, you see the town during a romantic horse carriage ride. At the main plaza, a walking tour explores the surrounding area including La Merced Church, the museum within Casa de los Tres Mundos, the colonial house of the Zamora family, who has lived here for generations, and the San Francisco Convent. The convent, and the church it is attached to, was first erected in 1525. Pirates burned down the convent 1665. Today the convent-cum-museum is noted for its ancient catacombs beneath the convent and church. Priests and other citizens of Granada have been buried here since 1546. An estimated 75,000 people have been buried in the catacombs’ walls.  UNESCO is considering listing Granada as a Heritage of Mankind Site.  Hotel Plaza Colon (B)

Day 3: Granada
Today, you head to Mombacho Volcano for a nature walk. You drive to the foot of the mountain and meet the park keepers. Then, you switch to a four-wheel-drive vehicle to explore the volcano, passing through cloud forest surrounded by exuberant vegetation and offering breathtaking views. You hike trails and learn more about the geology and people of the area. Visit a biological research station for a cup of coffee before you set out on a canopy adventure. Enjoy the view from the tops of enormous trees as you slide along sturdy cables from platform to platform. Lunch is served at Casa Hacienda between activities. Conclude the day with a relaxing boat ride around some of the islands formed by Mombacho Volcano. Hotel Plaza Colon (B,L)

Day 4: Granada / Rivas
This morning, you are privately driven about two and a half hours to Rivas and the Mukul Beach Golf & Spa resort.  This luxury boutique hotel is located in Guacalito de la Isla, a 1,670-acre low-density private beach community on Nicaragua’s Emerald Coast.  Mukul, the Mayan word for secret, features 37 spacious accommodations.  The resort amenities include Spa Mukul, with six private spa-treatment casitas, a beach club featuring dining and lounge areas; a swimming pool; and the 18-hole Guacalito Golf Course designed by David McLay Kidd, named the hottest architect in golf by Golf World. Don Carlos Pellas, named by America Economia as one of the 50 most influential persons in Latin America, is the man behind this luxury property. He succeeded in creating one of the most exclusive boutique resorts in the world – a luxurious yet relaxed private estate by the ocean.  The hotel and its 37 accommodations are designed in a style that combines modern elegance with the work of Nicaraguan artisans, who crafted fine furnishings from local materials such as sustainable local teak for tables, headboards of woven sugarcane twigs and lamps made of clay from nearby Masaya Volcano.  Your room, bohio, is 621 square feet and features high ceilings and a wall of glass that opens onto a sweeping wooden deck with a private plunge pool. The spacious bathrooms are finished in Nicaraguan travertine marble and showers with a view.  Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa – Bohio  (B,L)

Days 5/6/7: Rivas
These free days are the perfect way to end your Nicaragua adventure.  Explore the Emerald Coast on your own terms. Enjoy an excursion to nearby Anciana Island, popular with pelicans and frigate birds and  features a wave free shoreline perfect for swimming and snorkeling.  You can bike through the rainforest, relax on the beach or unwind at the spa. Golfers will love the 18 holes designed by master architect David McLay Kidd that teeter over the edge of ocean bluffs and plunge down to the sandy shore. Each hole has been designed around existing trees and each is irrigated by natural arroyos. Bridges and cart paths are made from local wood and volcanic stone. Be as active or laid back as you choose.  Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa – Bohio  (B,L)

Day 8: Rivas / Managua / Depart
Depart on a three-an-a-half hour, private transfer from your resort to the international airport for your flight home. (B)

Land price, per person, double occupancy: From $4340

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