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Masaya and Los Pueblos

You have only to step into one of the numerous artisan markets scattered around the area to realize that Masaya and the surrounding towns rule supreme when it comes to Nicaraguan arts and crafts. Furniture, pottery, food, gardening, there is no end to the list of areas in which locals have placed their own unique stamp. That Masaya and the neighboring towns are home to so much culture and individuality comes as little surprise. These green hills were home to Chorotega tribes, thousands of years before the Spanish arrived, and locals still maintain strong ties to their indigenous roots. The Spanish left their own mark, most prominently in the form of soaring Catholic churches where elaborate murals hang over stern saints. The natural offerings around Masaya aren’t shabby either: Laguna Apoyo’s tranquil, sulfur-infused waters and the smoking wonder of Volcán Masaya are short bus rides away. Around Masaya, locals are just starting to discover how to capitalize on the many charms of their area; the infrastructure is improving drastically, new hotels and restaurants are opening and artisans are becoming increasingly savvy when it comes to marketing their product. With past traditions and culture finally catching up to modern standards, now is a great time to visit the Masaya area.









By Rachael Hanley
A sometime newspaper journalist with a heavy side of wanderlust, Rachael moved to Quito in November to work on the V!VA staff. She is currently...
10 Jul 2009

Markets of Masaya

Mercado de Artesanias

This is Nicaragua's most famous market, located in an elegant century-old structure. Every Thursday, the “Night of Revelry” features folkloric dancing and music, as well as local food. It's a ...
Market
Masaya, Nicaragua

Masaya and Los Pueblos Historical Sites

Churches

122895Masaya has several attractive churches. Probably the nicest is the Iglesia de la Asuncion, a towering baroque building located in Parque Central. The Iglesia de San Jeronimo and Iglesia de San ...
Historical Building
Masaya, Nicaragua

Iglesia de San Marcos Agradece

131411When you enter Iglesia de San Marcos Agradece, look up. Above the baby blue walls are colorful murals of religious symbols. San Marcos stands on an arch before the altar, amid waterfalls, volcanoes ...
Historical Building
San Marcos, Nicaragua

Oldest buildings in San Marcos

131416Follow the street from southwest corner of the park, two blocks down and you’ll come across what are known as the oldest houses in San Marcos. Although not markedly different from their neighbors, ...
Historical Building
San Marcos, Nicaragua

Masaya and Los Pueblos Hotels

Bar y Restaurante Suleyka

You might find a huge bucket of water in your shower at Suleyka, as the tank-run system doesn’t always work when guests arrive and the staff turns it on. Although not a standout in the hotel ...
Hotel
La Boquita, Nicaragua

Villas del Mar

If you go to La Boquita/Casares during a high holiday and find that every other hotel is fully booked, you might turn to Villas del Mar. The hotel, built in Motel 6 style and painted bright yellow, ...
Hotel
La Boquita, Nicaragua

San Simian Eco Lodge

118640 The San Simian Eco Lodge is in a secluded spot on the edge of Laguna de Apoyo. The lodge has five private bungalows, each with private bathrooms and their own interior design.Four of the bungalows ...
Hotel
Laguna De Apoyo, Nicaragua

Crater's Edge

Once a private residence (like most buildings along the lakefront), Hospedaje Crater’s Edge is hushed and lovely, with wide tiled porches overlooking the lake – although rather strict with the ...
Hotel
Laguna De Apoyo, Nicaragua

Monkey Hut

Slightly cheaper and a lot less formal than neighboring Crater’s Edge, the Monkey Hut draws more of a backpacker crowd. The stacked bunks of the six-bed dorm ($12) are located to the rear of the ...
Hotel
Laguna De Apoyo, Nicaragua

Hostal Santa Maria

The owners of Santa Maria seem to think that by adding lace curtains and a few dried flowers, they can magically turn a budget hostel into a mid-range hotel. They can't. Despite the higher prices, ...
Hotel
Masaya, Nicaragua

Hotel Masaya

Hotel Masaya is interestingly designed following a Harley-Davidson theme. The friendly staff are obviously biker fans and are welcoming to all, including of course, biker groups. This nice ...
Hotel
Masaya, Nicaragua

Madera's Inn

The family-run Madera’s Inn is a pleasant hotel with 14 spotlessly clean and very well-maintained rooms. The homey common area is fitted out with a television, chairs, hammocks, and some basic ...
Hotel
Masaya, Nicaragua

Hotel Regis

The safe and relatively clean Hotel Regis is another good budget option if you find Hostal Mi Casa full. This hotel is one of the cheapest around, and is actually slightly cheaper than Mi Casa. ...
Hotel
Masaya, Nicaragua

Mi Casa Hostal

Conveniently located inside the Fruti Fruti restaurant (see listing), Mi Casa Hostal is a good value budget option. A relatively safe place to stay with friendly service, this hostel has a range of ...
Hotel
Masaya, Nicaragua

Hotel El Casino

139637Hotel El Casino is a hidden gem just 30 miles north of San Juan del Sur. SJ can get very busy and we discovered this fishing town after jetting from the pack. What we were not expecting were solid ...
Hotel
Casares, Nicaragua
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