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Grand Canyon of Somoto - Hiking Somoto - Nicaragua

Formed by volcanic rock, this geological marvel is between five and 13 million years old, dating back to the Miocene epoch. Eighty to 100 meter cliffs rise sharply into the sky, walling in three kilometers of cool, clear water, perfect for swimming. Although locals always knew about the canyon, it didn’t gain fame until 2004, when a group of Czech geologists explored the area. As part of Reserva Natural Tepesomoto-Pataste, the canyon is protected by the Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources (MARENA).


Taxis from the Shell station leave to the canyon every fifteen minutes and usually charge between 75 cents to $1 per person. Buses to the canyon leave from the station on the Pan-American Highway, but there is no set schedule. Reaching the river requires a bit of a hike, over the course of which it is necessary to pass a small stream. During the dry season stepping stones can be used to cross while during the wet season the water here can reach a person’s waist. Visitors should bring their own food and water, and leave behind anything they would mind getting wet. Following the river through the canyon requires scrambling over rocks or swimming, so visitors should be in fairly good physical condition. For a more relaxed ride it’s also possible to take a boat or rent an inner tube for 75 cents. Guides are recommended, especially in the rainy season when they should provide ropes and life vests. Amateur guides can be found at the nearby Sonis or La Playa communities or be arranged at Hotel Panamericano. There are also a couple of professional guides who charge around $15 USD per person. Raemel can arrange transport and has impressive knowledge of local legends concerning giant man-eating serpents and hidden treasures. He can be reached at (505) 817-1096. Edith has a degree in biology and can identify much of the flora and fauna native to the canyon. She also speaks a little English and can bring along a GPS tracker if so desired. Call her at (505) 667-2040.


Somoto, Nicaragua

Hiking Types:
National park, Hike

Price Description: 50 cents, USD

Relative price: Budget

Travel Skills: None

Currencies accepted
Nicaraguan cĂłrdoba

09 Jun 2009

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