Located adjacent to Lake Nicaragua and a one-time Spanish colony, Granada is a city of colonial grandeur with elements of Moorish and baroque design. There’s loads to see and do in Granada, a city that is a marvellous introduction to Nicaragua and a great starting point for any fun-packed trip.

Observe the colourful cityscape

Pastel colours create a stunning panorama, with red roof tiles interspersed with palm trees. Founded by the Spanish in 1524 and later fought over by the English, Dutch and French, today Granada is a laid-back, colourful city in the middle of Central America. The range of architectural and artistic influences makes for a feast for the eyes. Travellers with an eye for the aesthetic will love the villas and venues that come together to form a bold landscape.

Learn about those who’ve called the city home

Granada has a rich history in the transporting of precious metals between Spain and the Americas. Once a city beloved by pirates, today Grenada draws tourists and settlers alike, all keen to explore the contemporary, refreshing culture of the city. As well as a fascinating colonial history, the city’s many museums and galleries tell the deeply interesting stories of Nicaragua’s indigenous cultures. The Convento y Museo San Francisco, in particular, should be top of the list for anyone looking to learn about the authentic history of the city.

Enjoy city life and shop like a local

One of the best places to visit is the Main Street in the heart of Granada, Calle la Calzada. Here you’ll find an array of shops, restaurants and cafes that are typical of life in this vibrant city. Amongst the best things to see is the Catedral de Granada, a bright yellow church which opens out onto the Parque Central. Here you’ll find a market selling colourful, traditional Nicaraguan goods, including handmade treasures to take home, and fruits and sweets to boost your energy levels for even more exploring. You’ll even find tropical birds for sale here, their colourful wings blending in perfectly with the rainbow cityscape.

Be at one with nature

Outside of the hustle and bustle is the stunning scenery of Lake Nicaragua, one of the largest lakes on the planet. The island is home to a number of volcanoes and islands including the volcanic Isla Zapatera, a protected region. You can rent a kayak near here to explore tropical forests and observe the area’s wildlife at close quarters.