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Cailagua Petroglyphs

Department: Masaya

Municipality: Masaya (view on map)

Type: Petroglyphs



  • wrote on Oct 31, 2019:


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The Cailagua petroglyphs are part of the artistic expressions of the chorotegas from Monimbó. These ancient carved stone prints has the history and lifestyles of the early settlers of this area. On the walls of the natural course of Cailagua --an ancient stream that ends in a cliff overlooking the Masaya lagoon-- you can see approximately about 50 meters of zoomorphic images of bodies, circles, spirals, fauna and flora from that time , that the Indians made ​​before the Spanish conquest.

Among vegetation, the sound of birds singing and huge stones that are part of the scenic landscape of this place, you can appreciate the scenic beauty that make up the Masaya lagoon and Masaya Volcano National Park. From the main wall of indigenous prints you have to walk about 300 meters to the end of the natural stream, which ends in a drop of water into the lagoon. Over there visitors can enjoy a spectacular view of the beautiful water mantle, which when touched by the rays of the sun gives the viewer a silvery color that contrasts with the arid parts of the national park and green.

It is believed that this wall which hosts a valuable part of the history of the tribe, has approximately 200 expressions carved in stone, of which no one has been able to accurately interpret their meaning. The indigenous people of Monimbó has managed to preserve this type of archaeological and part of their customs through their roots and traditional values​​.

Practical information

To visit the place is recommended to take mountain climbing shoes for the ground conditions, a water bottle and encouragement to meet a new territory of Nicaragua. Both, the location of the remains and the surrounding neighborhood are very safe places, and you can always count on the hospitality of the people. However, it is preferable not to visit the vestiges at night.
There is no cost to enter the petroglyphs site, but ask the young people of Barrio Bombonaci (neighbors from the place) to lead you there, for a fee you can negotiate with them.

Getting There

To get to the petroglyphs the first thing you should do is to enter the city of Masaya, and reach Neighborhood Monimbó, all the way to Colegio Salesiano. Look at the photo gallery on our site of a map showing the route here described.

From the main gate of Colegio Salesiano, take the road that starts in front of it and that goes to the East. On that street, we walk 3 blocks to get to the Colegio Anexa Don Bosco, located on a curve. In this second school continue for a few meters East. At the end of that school's wall, also ends cobbled main street. Continue down a narrow dirt road down to the natural stream. Once you are there, continue to the left, following the course of the stream. After walking a few meters, you will start to see the petroglyphs, and some meters after you will see the end of the channel and the lagoon.