Managua may not be the main destination for your vacation, but, sooner or later, everyone ends up in Managua!
Despite what your travel book may be telling you, Managua is actually a safe, modern and bustling city, with lots of activities for the adventurous traveler. Having taken a few decades to shrug off the earthquakes that all but leveled the city, Managua is rebuilding itself with renewed thought to it’s inhabitants and visitors, comfort.
Still best explored by taxi, there are now many new parks, restaurants, cafes springing up throughout the city.
Here are some options for getting to know Managua, both new and ‘old’:
- Visit the Metro Centro Shopping Center. It’s located just a 5 minute walk from the hostel and offers banks, ATMs, cinemas, food court and many shops.
- Admire the “New” Cathedral. It’s a 15 minute walk from the hostel and is a unique contemporary architectural design.
- Grab a ball game and a hot dog or two at the new Dennis Martinez National Stadium. Its’ a 10 minute taxi ride from the hostel and offers baseball and other sporting, religious and cultural events.
- Feel cultured at the “National Palace of Culture” which is located in the ‘Plaza of the Revolution’, located a short 15 minute taxi ride away from the hostel. This building contains the National Museum and was one of the few buildings to survive the earthquake of 1972.
- Admire the Tiscapa Historical National Park which offers a fresh-water lagoon located in the heart of the City. The peak features the best views of the city as well as the famous silhouette of Sandino. Also take a zip line down to the water.
- Get dressed up for a trip to the Ruben Dario National Theatre. The theater is located in the Plaza of the Revolution and is among the most modern theaters in Central America. This building offers concerts and cultural events.
- Pay a visit to the “Old” Cathedral, located in the Plaza of the Revolution. This cathedral was damaged during the earthquakes of ’31 and ’72. The building itself is not currently open to the public but does provide a great photo opportunity.
- See the museum of the “Ancient Footprints of Acahualinca” which is located a 15 minute taxi ride from the hostel in the northwest section of the city. This museum offers a glimpse at the ancient history of Managua, including the 6,000 year old footsteps of native inhabitants engraved in volcanic ash.
Shop like a local at the Roberto Huembes Market, which is located a 15 minute taxi ride from the hostel. This market offers a unique mix of vendors catering to local Managuans and also vendors offering handicrafts, including hand made hammocks, chairs, t-shirts and much more. This is a must-see for those looking for souvenirs and gifts.