Discover luxury safari lodges and tented camps in Granada, Nicaragua
Kaleidoscopic in style – each adobe house wears a different sun-kissed hue – and left with a treasure trove of historic landmarks after centuries of invasions and pirate attacks, Granada is an eye-catching culture clash. It was settled in the 16th century by (somewhat self-proclaimed) ‘founder of Nicaragua’ Francisco Hernández de Córdoba, and gradually the city’s been elaborated with Italianate villas, colonnaded neoclassical townhouses and Moorish flourishes – its crowning glory is the buttercup-yellow cathedral ruling over the centro storico. The cobbled streets are too narrow for cars, they were built for horses and carts (which can still be seen), but they’re just right for tranquil walks through to peaceful plazas. Savvy travellers make this their base for exploring the wild wonders that lie yonder: hikes and hot-spring soaks around the base of Mombacho volcano, animal spotting in lush rainforests, hopping around the Isletas de Granada and cooling dips in the jaw-droppingly beautiful Laguna de Apoyo. And for a history lesson that’s a little less overwritten, Zapatera Island’s pre-Colombian petroglyphs are a short boat ride away.