The turquoise-browed motmot, the national bird of Nicaragua.
(photo credit: ryanacandee, https://flic.kr/p/29hxQD9)
Welcome to Nicaragua, pen pal!
Nicaragua is in Central America, right between Honduras to the North, Costa Rica to the South, the Caribbean Sea to the East, and the Pacific Ocean to the West!
Not only does Nicaragua have the largest lake in Central America, but it also has many active volcanoes. No wonder that Nicaragua is sometimes called the "Land of Lakes and Volcanoes"!
Let me show you just a few of the amazing things that are in this beautiful country.
Have you ever tried sledding? How about surfing? How about sledding and surfing down a volcano? Well, if you're a real thrill-seeker (and a little bit crazy), you can sled down the side of a volcano!
Volcano sledding down Cerro Negro! (photo credit: Blue Sonicboy, https://flic.kr/p/aCdLUB)
At Cerro Negro, an active volcano that is in the Northwest corner of Nicaragua, daredevils have invented a new extreme sport: volcano sledding. What do you think, pen pal, would you give it a try?
The boiling mud pits of San Jacinto! (photo credit: Graeme Churchard, https://flic.kr/p/b4J8d)
If you're not into volcano sledding, how about some other volcano sightseeing? Check out the Boiling Mud Pits of San Jacinto. Volcanic activity deep underground causes temperatures to get so high in this place that the mud bubbles and boils! Be careful walking around, you wouldn't want to get too close to these hot tubs!
Granada, Nicaragua (photo credit: Carlos Adampol Galindo, https://flic.kr/p/3KQhY4)
Maybe you're looking for something a little less... volcano? Take a trip to nearby Granada, one of Nicaragua's oldest and most beautiful cities. Granada is located right on the gigantic Lake Nicaragua, the largest lake in all of Central America and the twelfth largest lake in the entire world. There's plenty to see and do in town, including eating at some tasty restaurants and seeing the architecture of the old buildings.
Little Corn Island (photo credit: Brian Johnson & Dane Kantner, https://flic.kr/p/9Ee8S9)
All the way on the other side of Nicaragua, in the Caribbean Sea, is Little Corn Island. Little Corn Island is the smaller sibling of Big Corn Island, which is just a few miles away! Even though one of the islands is called "Little" and the other island is called "Big", they're both pretty small. In fact, Big Corn Island only has one paved road and Little Corn Island doesn't have any roads at all!
Hammerhead sharks! (photo credit: Ryo Sato, https://flic.kr/p/8oskYJ)
Little Corn Island is great for snorkeling and scuba diving. You can see beautiful coral, stingrays, lobsters, sea turtles... and plenty of sharks! If you're brave enough, you can swim with hammerhead sharks.
I hope you've learned a little bit about Nicaragua and are excited to join me on my next adventure, as I travel deep into the Land of Lakes and Volcanoes in search of a lost treasure... until next time, pen pal!