Granada was founded in 1524 by Cordoba, just like Leon. The architecture is beautiful, but the streets are a little rougher than Leon. We took a long day tour of Granada and the surrounding areas. It included a city walk in the old district, visits to a chocolate factory and ceramic workshop in the white village, a short market stop, swimming, and a volcano visit. It was a long day, to say the least. The Cathedral of Granada, seen below, is located in the main plaza.
The old stone doorway below was the only surviving structure after an accidental explosion of the armory.
Iglesia de la Merced was originally constructed in 1534, but has been restored numerous times. We climbed to the top of the bell tower for some gorgeous views of the city.
Across the street from Iglesia de la Merced is the Hotel Real La Merced, an elaborate old home of an Italian family with the original pink marble stairway preserved.
We stopped at an overlook of Laguna de Apoyo before heading down for a swim in its crystal clear water.
Visiting the islets of Granada is a must see in my book. We took an hour long boat ride on Lake Nicaragua, the second largest lake in Latin America where cranes, crocodiles, spider monkeys, and fresh water sharks make their home.
The last stop of our tour was Masaya Volcano, which is still active. It was amazing to see flowing lava only 300 meters away.