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Cathedral of Leon

Department: León

Municipality: León (view on map)

Type: Churches

Opening Hours

Monday - Saturday

8AM - 12PM

2PM - 4PM



  • Diana wrote on Aug 9, 2016:

    This is an impressive building, and the spiritual center of this colonial city. It is one of two UNESCO Heritage for Humankind sites in Nicaragua. (The other is the ruins of Old Leon). I highly recommend a visit to Leon.

  • Miko Ulloa wrote on Aug 3, 2013:

    Hi all, Will like to know if anyone here has the contact information for the Cathedral ? I will appreciated any contact information you might have on them .. Thanks

    Hola a todos, me gustaría saber si alguien aquí tiene la información de contacto de la Catedral? Voy a apreciar toda la información de contacto que pueda tener sobre ellos .. gracias

  • Juanita Loca wrote on May 22, 2013:

    Leon jodido! Un ciudad linda y la gente son marvilosa.. me gusta todos en Leon...

  • Lourdes wrote on May 26, 2012:

    Visite Leon en March 2010 y queda tan fascinada con esta ciudad, la architectura y su gente que pienso regresar pronto. En general los nicaraguenses son personas sencillas y muy amables. Quede impresionada con la belleza de la Catedral de Leon aun que es cierto que una pintada a la fachada de la catedral seria muy bueno no por eso debemos de desapreciar la belleza tienen tiempo visiten las iglesias a su alrededor al igual que los mercados...oh un detalle los taxis se comparten es nomal que el taxista recoga a otras personas mientras le lleva a el destino deseado a no ser que pagues el costo de los otros 3 pasajeros...

  • Joseph wrote on Mar 2, 2012:

    I didn't want to leave the beach at the Playa Roca Beach Hotel in Las Penitas, but they told me I had to see Leon at least for a 1/2 day. It was only a half hour bus trip from the beach, so we said lets take a little city tour. WOW, the cathedral is enormous, they said it is the largest in Central America and 2nd only to one in Peru. It could be much better taken care of, especially the painting of the outside looks nothing like what is inside, Magnificent. Great place to visit, but I'm not a city person, get me back to the beach and the Pacific Ocean, luckily only 15 miles away. Stay at the Playa Roca Beach Hotel, the best of the best and take tours based out of there.

  • wrote on Aug 5, 2011:

    que cuesta casarse en la catedral y a que numero llamo para reservarlo

  • marianela wrote on May 9, 2011:

    soy de mi bella nicaragua de leon de donde todos somos lindas personas soy del leon jodido arriva

  • Marving wrote on Apr 23, 2011:

    What an espectacular church this is and the locals are very friendly, I had a wonderful time.

  • David wrote on Nov 15, 2010:

    Recently visited Leon and surrounding area. At first I was taken back with all the activity going on but quickly relized how most locals welcomed visitors. This church is only one of several in the city this one is the best kept others are in not kept as well. Mass or other services are going on almost all the time but you can walk about and take pictures all you want. Some of the best eating places are in the square next to the church.

  • Anke wrote on Feb 20, 2010:

    I got to spend about half a day in the new Leon on Jan 26.09. It was excellent - yet very hot. I loved the Cathedral. I especially loved it because there were no security guards and basically no OFF limits. The architecture is awesome. That's a real church. Amazing Leon is worth a visit. I came with a group but felt very safe walking some of the streets on my own. I would love to come back someday.

  • A visitor wrote on Aug 14, 2009:

    leon is a beatutiful vcity

  • Sonia Aguado wrote on Aug 5, 2009:

    Had the oportunity to do the tour recently and even though from Leon originally was impressed with all the information they gave and that I did not know, such as date of construction, how many years it took to construct, what certain statues meant, etc. It was a wonderful experience.

  • john wrote on Mar 8, 2006:

    Church tour is very good..well worth it. Although in spanish. Great to learn about this very interesting church. Enjoyed learning about burials underneathe the church. Missed the bell ringing, but looked neat

Leave a Comment

Have you been here? Leave a comment below to share your experience.


The cathedral is the most prominent building of León. It is situated at the central plaza, and the first construction of this huge building started over two centuries ago. You can enter the building, get a tour, and set your eyes on some great architecture or enjoy superb views from the rooftop of the building. It was declared a Patrimony of the Humanity by the UNESCO in 2011.

When the cathedral was being built, rich people from the area bought a tomb below the floor of the cathedral. The money was used to construct and later maintain the building, and it offered a very special final resting place for the wealthiest people from León. The most spectacular grave is the one of Rubén Darío, the most famous Nicaraguan poet, whose tomb is covered by a stone lion in the center of the church.The other bodies are buried below the cathedral and the graves are inaccessible, but there are other subterranean areas that are still accessible.

Seven small cellars have been constructed below the building, to give the cathedral more flexibility during earthquakes. These chambers have also been used to store and hide treasures. Furthermore, one of the cellars provided access to a system of tunnels that connected several churches. In case of an attack, this provided a way of fleeing from one place to the other, underground. The treasures have also been rescued from pirates once, when they were brought to another church through the tunnel.

Out of the seven cellars of the church, three are open to the public. All three have a different story. A guide will accompany you and tell about the history of the cellars. Inside the cathedral, there is a desk where you can hire a guide for $ 2. Another option is to ascent to the rooftop of the building. You will also need a guide for this, which you can get at the same place for $ 2 as well.

From the rooftop, you will have a superb view of the city of León. You can see several other churches and other prominent buildings. You can also see the area around León, including many volcanoes if the sky is clear. The roof itself is impressive, and when ascending you will understand why it took over 30 years to complete the building. The cathedral has 34 domes, many church bells (the heaviest is believed to weigh over three tonnes) and four huge statues (copied from a cathedral in Mexico) on its roof.

Even if you are not into ascending to the top or going down to the cellars, it is still interesting to visit the cathedral. Inside, you can also see some great architecture and rich decoration. The sad lion covering Rubén Darío’s grave can also be seen when walking around in the cathedral. Furthermore, plaques, paintings, and other decoration give the cathedral a beautiful interior.

Getting There

The Cathedral is right in the center of the city, next to the Central Park.

Online Reservations

We have 2 related tour(s) available that can be booked online.

View and compare all 2 related tours