Near to the Port of Granada one finds an archipelago of more than 350 islets, which form a true tropical paradise.. In Puerto Asese, 3 Km from Granada one can rent a small boat to cruise among the Islets. It's a labyrinth in the exuberant vegetation. The majority of the Islets have one or several small houses, usually under the shade of large mango trees. You can linger in one of the numerous country restaurants on the isles to savor the guapote, a fish found in the Lake. You can also spend an afternoon at an island beach, swimming and tanning yourself.
The Islets and, in the background, Zapatera Island
is my favorite place in Nicaragua. It is the largest lacustrine island in the
world with its 276 km2, and it has enormous potential for tourism. Ometepe has
two volcanoes, one active, El Concepción (1610 m), and the other dormant,
El Maderas (1394 m). In Ometepe, on e can rent horses, bicycles, or cars. It
has attractive beaches and a tropical jungle for the adventuresome.
You can climb the Concepción volcano, if you're in good physical condition. The effort of the climb will be rewarded by a spectacular view from the crater. The crater itself is quite impressive and cannot always be seen because about half the time clouds cover the volcano’s summit. You can find guides for the climb at the Castillo de Altagracia Lodge.
If you don't have the spirit for a climb to the top of Concepción, perhaps you'll find Maderas more to your liking. The climb is easier, and a thick tropical jungle rich in fauna covers this volcano. It has numerous monkeys, boas, jaguars etc... In the crater you will see the mysterious cold lagoon of Maderas. You can camp by the shore of the lagoon if you aren't afraid to spend the night in a real tropical jungle. It is never a good idea to climb Maderas without a guide because it is easy to get lost in the jungle.
You can't go to Nicaragua without getting to know Ometepe Island. One embarks for Ometepe from the Puerto de San Jorge, 3 miles from Rivas. Launches leave each day in the morning. Be careful, because the boats don't leave at the announced times, and they tend to sail earlier !!! On Ometepe you will find numerous hotels in Moyogalpa, Altagracia, and at Playa de Santo Domingo.
The Island has good bus service on weekdays.