El Portón Verde Tours Visits the Masaya Volcano at Night, Sees Lava! (VIDEO)

Night Tour of the Masaya Volcano with Active, Jumping Lava!

Masaya Volcano Night Tour

Same spot, at night.


Masaya Volcano in day

Masaya Volcano in day

Hello kind reader(s) and robots:

With our group of three brothers and one cousin all visiting Nicaragua together, we went during the daytime and again at nighttime to visit the Masaya Volcano National Park yesterday. Here is my report:

I was there last night (23 June) and yes you can see the lava quite well. It’s pretty well down in the Santiago crater but very visible, especially from the main promontory and also on the left side of there.

Access is quite well controlled and they do limit your time. My group and I went during the daytime too so we could visit the visitor’s center, well worth it IMO. During the day they weren’t all that strict about the time limit. There was only one park ranger and he couldn’t really keep track of all the people. However, it is officially forbidden to walk the trails. The bat cave tours also are suspended.

So back the the night tour, you can start queuing up in your vehicle beginning at 5:30 pm but I would recommend waiting like we did until about 6 or 6:30 so it is totally dark when you get up to the top. You pay $10 per personl it doesn’t matter if you are a national or foreigner. You drive up to the visitors center, which is closed after 4:30, but there is a gate there and they use that to queue up perhaps twenty vehicles at a time to allow a cohort of vehicles to drive up together.
When you get up to the parking area of the crater, try to maximize your viewing time as they are limiting the time up there to fifteen minutes. I could have watched the lava for hours as it is incredibly mesmerizing. You can also hear the sounds of the lava and it appeared that there are two currents coming in from the west and east and when the pulses coincide there is a wave of sorts…as I say, mesmerizing.
There are maybe two or three park rangers up there at the crater at night and they are in communication with the other rangers at the gates, so when time is up they use a whistle to implore everyone to get back in their cars and go back down. As you’re going down, the next cohort of vehicles is making its way up.

I hope that helps and I know for a fact you will enjoy what you see! I believe there are only three places in the world where you can see something similar, Kileaua (sic) in Hawaii, someplace in Africa, and good ‘ole Nicaragua!

Cheers, Mike @ El Portón Verde, Managua

Link to video

“It’s the first time I see something like this, is very impressive” | El Nuevo Diario

Defying the intense smell of sulfur, the tourists come to look out at the seething lava pit near the surface of the crater of the Masaya volcano , whose fury the Indians tried to placate in the past by sacrificing maidens and children.

Photos: Masaya Volcano, impressive

“It is something extraordinary, unique in the world,” Noheli Pravia, a French tourist told AFP while watching the turbulent magma seen from the crater rim less than 100 meters deep.

Masaya, Kilauea in Hawaii and Nyiragongo in Africa are the only volcanoes in the world that have periodic outpourings of magma in its crater, says the Nicaraguan geographer and environmentalist Jaime Incer .

Lava of Masaya Vocano, located 20 km from the Nicaraguan capital, has been rising to the surface every 25 or 30 years since 1902 and after a while it disappears, but it always keeps emitting sulfur fumes that spread around the area, rusting roofs on houses and ravaging vegetation.

According to Incer, if the incandescent material rises its level up each occurrence, it is possible that within 150 years the volcano will make a similar eruption to 1772, when the flow reached the area where the international airport exists today.

A few kilometers from the volcano, the village of Piedra Quemada that keeps the vestiges of that eruption is based.

“Before there was no land here but stones , ” says Sandra Perez, one of the 6,000 people who have learned to live with the volcano and do not believe it is a threat.


The small cone, 400 meters high, came 5,000 years ago. It consists of five craters of which only one -called Santiago- remains active, crowned by a dense plume.

Six months ago, the hole increased activity with magma flows accompanied by sporadic micro-earthquakes.

“It ‘s the first time I have seen something like this, it is very impressive , ” says Mijaela Cuba, an Austrian nurse.

She is one of the 4,000 tourists who have climbed to the burning throat of the volcano in the last two weeks since the government authorized the entry of people, although limited to a visit of a few minutes due to gases.

Only green parrots and bats nest permanently and survive in the toxic environment of the crater.

It s “very special” adds excited young Taiwanese Sami Yen who takes photos to the crater rim where the magmatic waves are heard.

The volcano is located in the most populated area of the Nicaraguan Pacific and is part of a protected area of 54 km2, which include vast fields of petrified lava populated by white trees, the Sacuanjoche, the national flower of Nicaragua.

Snakes abound, white-faced monkeys and animals that can withstand high temperatures, says the guide Luis Solano.

The Hellmouth

The flames of Masaya, who made two strong eruptions in 1670 and 1772, frightened the Spanish conquistadors.

“It ‘s a mouth of fire that never stops burning , ” the first governor Pedrarias wrote to the king of Spain in 1525.

The friar Francisco de Bobadilla was believed that the door to hell, so he installed a huge cross at the edge of the crater.

While the greedy Friar Blas del Castillo thought the gold was melted and washed down hanging from a basket to remove material according to the legend.

Chorotega Indians who inhabited the area tried to calm the angry volcano offering a sacrifice of children and maidens They claimed that the witch “Chalchihuehe” lived in the burning pit.

In the 70s, the Somoza dictatorship launched into the mouth of the volcano an ex-colaborador of the Sandinista guerrilla, David Tejada, the Sandinista excolaboradora Vilma Nunez told AFP.

Source: “Es la primera vez que veo algo como esto, es muy impresionante” • El Nuevo Diario

Frenchman Mr. Villain: lucky to survive a non-guided hike on Consiguina Volcano, #Nicaragua

Villain gets beaten by Cosigüina volcano

Frenchman who disappeared in Cosigüina is found

Saul Martinez10/04/2016

After being rescued, the Frenchman was taken to hospital in Chinandega. PRESS / SAUL MARTINEZ

The Frenchman identified as Franck Jöel Daniel Villain, 31, who disappeared on Friday, April 8th after climbing alone on Cosigüina volcano was spotted in the Cabo de Hornos area, on the Cosigüina peninsula, the Unified Search and Rescue (UBR) team of the of the General Directorate of Fire (DGB) of Managua, with the help of local staff in Leon and Chinandega of volunteers.The discovery was made shortly after 9:00 pm on Sunday April 10 and it was learned that the Risk Management Unit (UGR) of the municipality of El Viejo, Chinandega, traveled to Potosi to give aid to the foreigner who was found to be dehydrated and with a wounded leg.

The Frenchman is recovering in hospital in Chinandega where he was taken at about eleven o’clock Sunday night. He said yesterday that decided to leave the abandoned ranch where he had taken refuge, he started walking at night and found the peasant Amilcar Lazo, who took him to his house and gave him drink. 

From there, they called the authorities and asked if they were searching for a foreigner. Mr. Villain said he works in a museum in France and wanted to know the place, before he had been in the ruins of Tical in Guatemala, then Honduras and last Monday he entered Nicaragua. It was also in Cerro Negro.

After his experience, he recommended tourists come up with a guide to avoid risks. After leaving the hospital he says he will go to Leon, Managua and has plans to go to Ometepe. He will then travel to Costa Rica.He thanked firefighters and villagers who searched for him.Volcan-Cosiguina


Dionisio Jose Lopez Ruby, first chief commander of the Fire Department of the municipality El Viejo, reported that a tour guide found the foreigner on Friday and that he had said that he would climb to the viewpoint of Tres Países  and would continue to the other side, to the northwest side .

The guide showed the Frenchman the path to take, however Villain apparently became disoriented.

Villain sent a message to a friend abroad to him know that the tourist was lost.It was known that by Villain sending a message at dawn on Saturday to his Romanian friend, letting him know he was lost and could not find the way back.

From Romania a friend of the Frenchman sent a message to a citizen of Matagalpa and this person in turn called the fire department of Managua. which then warned the DGB of Managua, Leon and the Civil Association of Volunteer Fire Chinandega and El Viejo what scoured from 9 April began.

The last thing the French had written to his friend in Romania is that it was in a desolate house where there was a bean field near something that looked like a military sector. The cellphone battery then discharged.

Frank Villain. PRESS / Photograph taken from his Facebook account.

Frank Villain. PRESS / Photograph taken from his Facebook account.


On September 3rd, Yucenly Tyyacount Israeli, who climbed from the region of El Jobo and then got lost the way, went deep in the woods where he slept and the next day was found dehydrated and lost. 

Yucenly was rescued by members of the Civil Defense in the municipality of El Viejo and people who participated in the search.


I mean really, do you want photos of you looking like this getting into the press?

Also the 1st of February three locals were rescued who went down to the lake to hunt deer. The firefighter commander Dionisio Jose Lopez Ruby suggested to the mayor of El Viejo that they better maintain the control the access to the Cosigüina Nature Reserve for visitors wanting to enjoy mountain tourism.

original story on La Prensa here–> Encuentran al francés desaparecido en Cosigüina

Villain gets beaten by Cosigüina volcano

First comment…is that it is good that the Frenchman with the interesting name of Villain survived his ordeal. We’re happy that he stumbled across a local campesino who took him home, gave him water and called the authorities. Good man!

Second…is that it appears that every once and a while foreign tourists need to be reminded that when they hike volcanoes in Nicaragua that they should hire a local guide. There was a similar story years ago about a German man who got lost on Concepcion Volcano on Ometepe Island and didn’t have a happy ending like Monsieur Villain did.


Government warns of new eruptive activity on Momotombo Volcano – Metro

 Government warns of new eruptive activity on Momotombo Volcano

by ACAN-EFE December 26, 2015

Source: Gobierno advierte nueva actividad eruptiva en volcán Momotombo – Metro

From El Porton Verde we see two volcanoes on a clear day, neither of which is this one, Momotombo Volcano. We see Masaya Volcano and in the background we can sometimes also see Mombacho Volcano.

We drove up to see Momotombo Volcano a couple of weeks ago after the initial eruption had died down and were amazed by its beauty. There is a lovely little port where artesanal fisherman head out to Lake Managua to fish. We might go again as seeing the actual eruption would be really cool!

Luckily for us this volcano is some eighty kilometers away from us, so we are safe for the moment! Cheers everyone and here’s to living on the edge!


Volcanic activity in Nicaragua attracts about 40,000 tourists a year • El Nuevo Diario

Managua, Nicaragua |



  • The Telica volcano , Cerro Negro and Momotombo , located in the “ring of fire” of the Pacific and in the “chain of volcanoes” of Nicaragua, receive at least 40,000 foreign tourists per year, reported an industry source .

The entrepreneur, promoter and tour operator of Nicarao Tours and Travel, Enrique Zamora, who promotes riding “The Maribios”, that range from the Telica volcano to the island of Momotombito Momotombo’s neighbor, told El Nuevo Diario that foreigners are attracted to adventure tourism.

  • Mainly European and American tourists love to climb volcanoes, take walks, rest and sleep on their flanks and slide down steep slopes on wooden boards, he said.

Zamora said the ride “The Maribios” begins in the community of San Jacinto, which hosts a geothermal field, bubble-pots and “is the gateway” to the Telica volcano, one of the most active volcanos, with a height of 1,061 meters.

The hot place, located in the municipality of Telica, León Department (West), offers a number of volcanic craters and provides a natural spectacle that allows the observation of the permanently boiling mud, carbon dioxide and other gases in magma that heats the water flowing under the earth’s surface.

The tour continues in Cerro Negro, the youngest volcano in Central America and one of the most active in Nicaragua, which invites adventurous tourists to practice “sandboarding”, an extreme sport that involves descending aboard a surf style board on the black ashes of that colossus of 728 meters above sea level.

The tour of the walk of “The Maribios” includes visits to the volcano Las Pilas, El Hoyo, the Asososca hill and lagoon El Tigre, there few know of these places, said the employer.

The last stop is a visit to the ruins of Leon Viejo, a community in the municipality of La Paz Centro and was the first city founded by the Spanish in Nicaragua in 1524.

That city was moved to its present site in 1610 after an eruption of the Momotombo volcano, which is currently active, when it was under administration of the Spanish Crown, recalled Zamora.

The Momotombo, 1,297 meters and located north of Lake Managua or Xolotlán scenario is undergoing its biggest eruption in over a century, with expulsion of gases, sand, lava and pyroclastic material, but has now ceased.

“The lava flow at Momotombo has been a show that has attracted many tourists,” said the businessman.

The authorities maintain vigilance in northwestern Nicaragua, hinterland of the volcano.

Source: Actividad de volcanes en Nicaragua atrae a unos 40,000 turistas al año • El Nuevo Diario

Center for Extreme Tourism Opens on Nicaragua’s Tallest Volcano

Center for Extreme Tourism Opens on Nicaragua’s Tallest Volcano

CHICHIGALPA, Nicaragua – A new attraction for fans of extreme tourism has been inaugurated at the foot of San Cristobal Volcano, Nicaragua’s tallest, in the northwestern region of the Central American country.
Volcano San Cristobal in Nicaragua, taken from an upper level of the sugar mill at the Ingenio San Antonio in Chichigalpa, Nicaragua. Ryan Ballantyne --ryos 01:28, 18 June 2006 (UTC) - Own work

Volcano San Cristobal in Nicaragua, taken from an upper level of the sugar mill at the Ingenio San Antonio in Chichigalpa, Nicaragua.
Ryan Ballantyne –ryos 01:28, 18 June 2006 (UTC) – Own work

The site, with its inn, dining hall, visitors center, tourist service facility and trails for climbing the 1,745-meter (5,721-foot) high volcano, was constructed with a budget of 250,000 euros ($276,125), funded 80 percent by the European Union and 20 percent by the Chichigalpa city government.

Its construction is aimed at promoting the comprehensive development of the tourism value chain based on the Route of the Colonial Cities and the Volcanoes, the EU said.

“We used to think that all this volcano could do was erupt, but now it’s on the national route of tourist attractions,” Chichigalpa Mayor Victor Manuel Sevilla told EFE.

Cool story from the LatAm Herald Tribune about the opening of a new tourist center located on Volcano San Cristobal, located near Chichigalpa, which is in-between Leon and Chinandega, Nicaragua. The volcano is consistently active, and is the tallest in Nicaragua at 5,725 ft. It’s part of a chain of five volcanoes in the area.
The funding came mostly from the EU with a portion paid for by the city of Chichigalpa. This new center is expected to boost sustainable tourism.

INETER scientists make measurements in Telica

INETER scientists make measurements in Telicatelicavolcanoerupting


Monday May 11, 2015 | CD SINAPRED

Faced with the constant explosions in the Telica Volcano, Leon department, scientists from the Nicaraguan Institute of Territorial Studies (INETER) continue in the giant crater performing all the relevant measurements in order to take appropriate decisions in the event that the possibility of being detected a major event.

According to INETER, the latest measurements of the day reported a decrease in volcanic temperature.

Still, monitoring continues through modern equipment purchased by the institution to track precisely the volcanoes that can endanger the life of Nicaraguan families.

The expert from INET, Jose Armando Saballos, explained during a power measurements in this volcano are installed seismic stations, GPS equipment and webcam, which are responsible for registering any event -deformaciones- and evaluate physical changes that may be occurring.

Activity is not so great

The results so far look promising. According Saballos measurements made ​​last Friday showed that the emissions of sulfur dioxide are low.

The volcano indexes recorded “below 100 tons (of sulfur) per day, which is low. For example, the Masaya walks through its 500 tons per day,” he said.

In the case of temperatures, the expert stressed that these “are not higher than is customary.”

Authorities work closely with the population

At the foot of Telica there are several communities. The authorities have urged people to protect the deposits of water both for human consumption and animal because volcanic ash can contaminate and cause health problems. Also beware call acid rain caused by gas.

Besides the INET and institutions like the Civil Defense, the volcano has been present the Red Cross, which is working with the community everything related to the prevention and evacuation routes in the event that a major eruption was given dimensions.

Francisco Osejo, representative of this institution relief, said that is being addressed with national and local authorities the issue of hostel facilities and the actions to take immediately the occurrence of the event.

Orientations pending families

Crater near the Aguas Frias community where 80 families live is located. According to its inhabitants, they are monitoring the situation and all orientations of the authorities.

“Sometimes it gets serious situation and we have to leave,” said resident Herminio Davila.

“It’s a bad situation out there” he stressed.

INETER stresses that so far the activity in the Telica is much lower than that recorded in 2011.

original in Spanish here–> Científicos del INETER realizan mediciones en el Telica.

So while volcanoes are a big draw for visitors to Nicaragua, guess what, on occasion they act like, well VOLCANOES and send out lots of ash and need to be closely monitored so that if one of them decides to really blow then some warning will be provided to the local inhabitants so they can get out of harm’s way. Let’s hope the monitoring shows further signs of the volcano calming down!

Volcano Tourism, a sleeping giant| La Prensa Noticias


Volcano Tourism, a sleeping giant

  • Entrepreneurs: if the infrastructure was improved at the volcanoes, more tourists would come

Nicaragua has the privilege of having a large presence of volcanoes in the Pacific. The potential to attract tourists is asleep. Proof of this is that in recent years the percentage of tourists coming to the country and climbing a volcano, for example, has remained stagnant.

The figures of the Nicaraguan Institute of Tourism (Intur) indicate that between 2009 and 2013, out of every ten tourists visiting the country each year, only two climbed a volcano. The Americans and Central Americans are the ones who practice this tour attraction more every time they visit Nicaragua. Only in 2013, the total passengers who said he climbed a volcano, 29.3 percent came from Central America and 21.8 percent were American.

The local tourism authorities and representatives of business chambers linked to this sector admit that there is great potential to sell volcanoes as an option for adventure tourism, mainly to North America, Europe and South America. So why is this tourist destination so nascent? The challenge is to improve the infrastructure and security conditions in these places that have been recognized to have such great potential.

Read the rest here–>Turismo volcánico, gigante que duerme | La Prensa Noticias.

Here at FEPV we have reported before on Volcano Tourism. I’m sort of suprised that only two out of every ten tourists visiting Nicaragua actually visit a volcano! As far as Farmstay visitors, I’d say a good 90% visit at least one volcano if not two or three. People really dig them, and if you think about it, you can see why.

  • Most people visiting Nicaragua don’t live anywhere near volcanoes, much less active ones or ones you can slide down or camp on top of!
  • There is something quite primal in seeing the force of nature that is an active volcano, and it is worthwhile to see at least one on your visit.
  • There are some absolutely unique things to do on Nicaraguan volcanoes that are not prevalent in other volcano tourism spots.