This is a translated version of my 2007 post:
Getting to know Nicaragua was really about going to Granada, the only city we’ve been recommended.
Arriving in Granada, looking for a hostel, we met a boy who is from Isla Ometepe, a place that we wanted to spend the day while we were in Granada. He told us to stay on the island, as there is a lot to see.
1 taxi, 2 buses, 1 ferry and a bus later we arrived on the island of Ometepe, The island has 2 volcanoes, one active and one not. Ometepe is an Aztec word, means Ome = 2 and Tepe = volcanoes. It was cool to be on the bus and see volcanoes on both sides. And of the active, the Concepcion, you see the smoke on top. Not a common sight.
After we settled in*, almost 5 in the afternoon, we went swimming in the crystal clear waters of Ojo d’Agua, a natural pool but with mineral water! A delight..
*I didnt write it at the time as I didn’t want my mom to freak out, but Marina and I set our tent right at the beach and slept there. Beautiful and free, but what the hell were we thinking?
We decided to climb the Concepcion Volcano the next day, so we slept early to start the walk at 5 am. The climb of the volcano was difficult, imagine 4h of steep climbing, using both hands and feet to climb.
And we were in a hurry, because we needed to get the 4pm ferry to return to Managua and take the bus to Guatemala. The climb was getting more and more difficult, until after crossing sun, rain, forests and clouds, we arrived at the top of the volcano. Wow, I found it insane to see that giant crater, you can’t get too close because in fact the volcano doesnt release the smoke, it sucks the smoke inside. And if you fool around, you go along.
You can’t stay more than 5 min at the top, the floor is hot, there’s a lot of wind and it pushes you, plus at any moment the volcano can erupt. And the descent, that I hoped to be calmer, upset me. My legs ached and stopped obeying me, out of nowhere my knee would bend and I tumbled around 20 times. Lots of rocks, slippery floor… No danger, I could just twist or break my leg. Tranquilo.
But now thats past, I can say it was worth it. Not anyone can say they climbed an active volcano !!! (this photo is from the crater of the volcano, up there!)
Here’s a pic of the top of this volcano. To this day, I haven’t climbed another volcano.