Sunday, June 2, 2013

Nicaragua: Ometepe

My last trip in Nicaragua was to Ometepe, an island in the middle of Lake Nicaragua that consists of two volcanoes: Concepcion and Maderas. I headed over with some new friends from my hostel in Granada. We grabbed a bus to Rivas, a ferry to the island and finally a cab to Finca Magdalena, an organic coffee farm, where we stayed.

The taxi was great! The window winder wasn't attached, some of the doors had to be opened from the outside only and the seat covers were actually red polo shirts. I loved it and it got us there.

Once we'd settled into our room (which was very pretty with colourful mosquito nets) we headed out to find some food.

 The view from the room.

The path to town.

 We found a lovely little place by the beach and ordered some food. This is the classiest dog I've seen in a while - crossed wrists and everything.
 Having recovered from Leon we ordered a couple of small bottles of rum and set about turning ourselves into pirates.
 This plan failed when we realised that the lake was freshwater and we had no ship. However, we took the last of the rum swimming with us in the twilight anyway. When we emerged it was full dark and we were surrounded by fireflies. A pretty magical night all in all.
 The next day we committed to climbing Maderas - the smaller of the two volcanoes. We got up bright and early but mucked around until about 9.30.

 We eventually got on the road.

 The temperature higher up was much cooler and we entered into cloud, but the hike was steep and on rough terrain so you didn't feel particularly cool!

 Luckily we had breaks pretty often.

 It took us a little over 3 hours to reach the top and we were all reasonably disgusting by the time we did. Luckily, there was a lagoon at the top of this volcano - the idea of which was all that had kept us going.
 Unluckily the rainy season hadn't quite kicked in yet and the lagoon was unswimmable. However, we were determined to get in.
 It didn't work out too well.

 On the walk down the clouds had lifted a little and we got some nice views of the bay and Concepcion.

We finally got down and spent the night playing cards. I tried to teach 500 but it was viewed as far too complicated - amateurs! I spent the next two days avoiding going downstairs!

The next morning Alex (boy) and I shared a taxi to the ferry and sailed back to Rivas. From there he was going to do some work (he's actually on a business trip, the lucky bastard!) and I headed back to Granada.

These guys were doing some laundry in the lake, others were fishing nearby.

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