The Masaya Volcano National Park is one of the most popular tourism attraction in the Pacific region of Nicaragua. The reason is that you can here get in direct contact with its most active crater and its surrounding, as well as with the special flora and fauna on place. The volcano park offers at night, also, a unique scene which amaze the night visitors: the so call “lava lake” wich could be appreciated from the crater border.
The visit to the Masaya volcano is divided in two moments, with deferents schedule and entrance fee. The first moment is during daytime, and the second one during a brief tour to watch the lava lake. Read below about each visit, and check at the text bottom available tours with online reservation activated.
The park open to the public for the daily visit everyday at 9 AM, and until 4:45 PM. Visitors can go to the main gate located in Masaya-Managua road, from where they will be registered and will get the intruction to buy their tickets. It is not necessary to make a reservation. This visit has an entrance fee of C$100 for foreigners visitors and C$30 for Nicaraguans.
From the main gate you will access the internal road that go across the impressive volcano settings (dry forest flora and fauna adapted to a volcanic soil environment). The road goes to the Visitors Center; there a permanent exhibition offers details about the park history, structure and nature, as well as information about other volcanoes on the zone. Near you will also find the Pic-Nic area, with some structure to take a rest, take a snack or a meal or a drink, and appreciate the panorama.
Following the rute you will get to the Plaza de Oviedo, an amazing scenario located just next to the Santiago crater, the most popular on the park and the only one wich is now opened to the public. Here you will be able to park and take a look to the enormous crater (in and around), wich is all the time emitting gases; in the bottom of it you will observe the incandescent lava that come from the depths. In front of the plaza you will look a hill which has on the top the historic Cruz de Bobadilla.
Until recently it was possible to visit other areas of the park, as the Tzinaconostoc Cave, the San Fernando crater, the Cruz de Bobadilla and several trails of different distances. However, those areas remain “clsed until further notice” because of several moments of activity reported at the volcano.
Everyday, since sunset, the nocturnal visit of the Masaya Volcano starts. This visit is also available withaout reservation, from 5 PM to around 8 PM, depending on the visitors flows. You just need to get the road main entrance; if there are peoplo or groups before you, you will need to stand in line, as visitors are alowed to enter and go to the crater in order of arrival. The vehicles are parked one after the other next to the main road. The entrance fee for the night tour is US$10 per person.
When the turn comes, vehicles area allowed to enter, visitors are asked to pay the entrance fee, and then are tell to continue inside for around 5 kilometers until the Plaza de Oviedo. Bellow you can read about tours with transportation included offered by tours operators.
There the spectacle begin: the sky is getting dark or is already dark, allowing you to see thousands of stars. The wind flows free. You heard a sounds like the rumbling of the sea. And, from the edge of the crater, right into the bottom of it, you see an amazing lava lake that move with its incandescent color. The visit to the crater lasts between 10 and 20 minutes (depending on the total number of visitors at the entrance). After that time you will be asked by guides and park ranger to leave the area and go to the main gate.
The Masaya Volcano National Park comprises an area of 54 km² and includes two volcanoes and five craters. The volcanoes have erupted several times in history, and were feared by both the indigenous people and the Spanish conquerors. The Spanish baptized the active volcano "La Boca del Infierno" or "The Mouth of Hell". They planted a cross, "La Cruz de Bobadilla" (named after Father Francisco Bobadilla), on the crater lip in the 16th century in order to exorcise the Devil.
The eruptions have had a dramatic impact on the surroundings. Rocks and volcanic ashes still cover the area surrounding the volcanoes. The nature is rough yet peaceful. Different types of vegetation appeared after the eruptions. The park is also inhabited by many different kinds of animals. The park's wildlife includes coyotes, skunks, raccoons, opossums, deer, iguanas, and monkeys.
There are several trails that lead to the other craters and the Tzinaconostoc Cave in which hundreds of bats house. Those trails distance vary between 1.4 and 5.9 kilometers, but are closed to the public for now.
The park is open every day from 9:00AM until 4:45PM for regular visits. It is located on the highway to Masaya (Carretera Masaya), kilometer 23.
The park lies less than half an hour away from Managua, and ten minutes from Masaya. From the entrance of the park it is five kilometers uphill to the Masaya Volcano, located at the center of the park. Visitors can drive uphill themselves or ask a taxi driver to drive to the crater. Hiking uphill is another option, but it takes a while and the road is steep, so a good condition is necessary.
We have 6 related tour(s) available that can be booked online.
Masaya Volcano - Lava Tour
By: DeTour, Viajes y Cultura
Combo Adventure: Granada Islets and Masaya Volcano
By: Explorer Tours
Masaya and Santiago Volcano
By: Servitour Monimbo
Three Volcanoes Tour
By: Café Las Flores - Mombotour
Masaya & Granada City Tour
By: Café Las Flores - Mombotour
wrote on Mar 25, 2021:
I went on a filed trip here we got ice ceram that was the best part dint give a shit about everything else
qwfds wrote on Aug 23, 2020:
wrote on Feb 6, 2018:
me very good smart
wrote on Dec 7, 2017:
Maurice wrote on Dec 5, 2017:
Is this relevant.
julio rios wrote on Oct 25, 2017:
i never go to the volcano but i can see the photo on line , its beutiful place congratulation for give a lot of imformation. i want to know this place
julianna wrote on Feb 9, 2017:
i wish ther was more history
Mitchell K Harris wrote on Aug 22, 2016:
No reservation necessary. If you go at night, expect a hour wait. Amazing at day and at night.
Francis wrote on Jul 27, 2016:
Still close ?
Lied METCALF wrote on May 28, 2016:
I have been trying to call since Wednesday to make (recommended) reservations and only get a machine (in Spanish and English). Anybody have any advice?
Charlotte Fournier wrote on May 2, 2016:
it is beutiful :)
Sarah wrote on Apr 2, 2016:
Any news if or when the Masaya Volcano National Park will be open soon? thankyou
Siggy in CR wrote on Mar 8, 2016:
Any news as to when the crater will be accessible again?
Kyla wrote on Feb 12, 2016:
This is a different adventure in our country, We are so happy because this Natinal Park has been utulized to discover new experiencies! Love my Nicaragua.
wrote on Oct 13, 2015:
Thanks for the info
Brier wrote on Apr 20, 2015:
thanks for the info
u.m wrote on Mar 15, 2015:
want to take my 6yr grandaughter for a natur adventure horse riding ,seeing jungle animals&jungleziplines and little corn islandmild water raftingand volucano surfing thanks for any help
nagisa furukowa wrote on Mar 25, 2014:
im from clannad
Leah wrote on Oct 6, 2013:
It's so big and beautiful!!!!
rasta man wrote on Sep 24, 2012:
I love 1D!!!!
Mollie wrote on Jul 3, 2012:
Last eruption was 4/30/12. Beautiful! Bat cave fantastic. Guide Joel spoke excellent English. Saws the green parrots too. Dusk tour very good, arrive early to see museum. So glad we came!
wrote on Dec 12, 2011:
im doing project on this and i think ill do great thanks to this website!!!
Paola wrote on Nov 17, 2011:
omg i love this volcano its the best!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
David Podgor wrote on Oct 20, 2011:
Masaya is beautiful. Here is a video of the park:
Carlos Mondragón wrote on Nov 12, 2010:
I've had two exciting trips to this park. I posted my shots at my blog:
lily wrote on Mar 18, 2010:
Excelent experience and really close to Managua. I recomended. Made a blog with pictures http://volcanmasaya.blogspot.com
A visitor wrote on Jun 19, 2006:
I just went to this volcano today. It was really wonderful and awe-inspiring to hear the rumble of the bubbling lava, and to see all the geological features of the area. It was an easy trip in a taxi from the hotel in Managua. I recommend it strongly to other travelers.
Erwin wrote on Jun 29, 2005:
When we went to the Masaya Volcano National Park today, the volcano itself was hard to see, due to the rainy weather which caused steam in the hot vulcano, and not much more than white steam could be seen.
Nevertheless, we found a guide that was willing to show us one of the 100 caves around the vulcanos. After watching the entrance of a cave called 'the witch', we entered 'the bat', which, obviously, was home for much bats.
The tour in the cave took us about an half hour, which could have been more but we were a bit late and the park was already closing, and in that time we saw a lot of bats, and got a good describtion of everything we saw and the whole history of the caves and the vulcano by the guide. Shame he didn't speak English. But maybe other guides in the park do.
After the tour we got to hurry a bit cause the park had already closed 10 minutes earlier, so we didn't got that much time (no time) to look around and see the rest of the park, but I liked it.