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Our Real Latin America Expert

Paul Winrow Giffen
Paul Winrow-Giffin - Travel Expert

After graduating in Computer Science, Paul spent seven months travelling from Colombia to Argentina and came home hooked on Latin America.

Ometepe

Known as the land of volcanoes, Nicaragua is home to some of Central America’s most impressive magma mountains. Read on to find out which volcanoes you shouldn’t miss when visiting Nicaragua.

Maderas and Concepción

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A pair of conical peaks responsible for the creation of Ometepe Island located in Lake Nicaragua, now one of the country’s most popular destinations for tourists as well as locals. Despite its fame, the island maintains a relaxed and laid-back atmosphere with an abundance of birds, mammals and tropical fruit trees. Climbing either is a challenge, particularly Concepción (still an active volcano), which takes the best part of 10 hours!

Momotombo

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The perfectly shaped Momotombo Volcano rises 1,297m and towers over Lake Managua and the smaller island volcano of Momotombito. It played an important role in history when, in 1625, it buried Nicaragua’s former capital, the old city of León, under layers of volcanic ash. A challenging climb and scramble to the top results in some fantastic views.

Cerro Negro

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This volcano really stands out from the surrounding region as a towering, jet black mountain rising up from the ground an hour or so outside of León. There is a winding trail up to the summit, first over craggy volcanic rock and later on softer black ashy dunes formed by cooled lava. The hike is tough but enjoyable and the views are rewarding, however the fun is in the journey down! Hop on a make-shift ‘ash-board’ and slide down the side of the volcano all the way to the bottom – the experience is much like sledging, but in a hot, tropical country!

Masaya

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This is one of the best-known national parks in Nicaragua with some fantastic opportunities for walking with wonderful views over the surrounding lands. For me, the real stand-out experience here was being able to peer down into Masaya's crater and see a pool of magma bubbling away around 1km below. This felt like a very primordial experience seeing the bright red molten rock splashing on the dark sides of the crater.

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Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.

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Real Latin America Experts

  • Evie Oswald
    Evie Oswald - Travel Expert

    It's hard to believe that Evie has had time to cram so much in to her life so far. Having lived as a child in the Americas and Europe she found herself immediately attracted to Latin America.

  • Carrie Gallagher
    Carrie Gallagher - Travel Expert

    A former JLA tour leader, Carrie brings a wealth of on-the-ground experience to our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours department.

  • Lina Fuller
    Lina Fuller - Travel Expert

    Lina's passion for the continent where she was born really took off when she moved to Córdoba (Argentina) to study, spending the holidays travelling between Argentina and her native Colombia.

  • Chris Rendell Dunn
    Chris Rendell-Dunn - Travel Expert

    Anglo-Peruvian Chris grew up in Lima and spent much of his adult life in between London and Cusco as a tour leader, before settling permanently in our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours sales team.

  • Mary Anne Nelson
    Mary Anne Nelson - Travel Expert

    Born in the Atacama Desert in northern Chile, Mary’s insider knowledge and dry sense of humour make her a highly valued member of the Tailor-made Holidays and Group Tour sales team.

  • Sophie Barber
    Sophie Barber - Travel Expert

    Sophie lived in Chile before joining us and has travelled extensively across Latin America, from Mexico to the furthest tip of Patagonia and beyond to Antarctica.

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