Sunday, March 23, 2014

Leon- The Saturday City

Leon – A City Filled with History
 
Leon
The city is named after Leon, Spain and after Nicaragua gained independence in 1800 from Spain, the elites of Leon as well as Granada struggled over which city would be the capital with Managua eventually being the choice.

Leon located in the northwest region of Nicaragua, south near Granada, Ometepe with the beaches is a college town often overlooked by many tourists who stayed there. Leon, a stable university town has lots of markets, with growing food scene, colonial churches and cathedrals than any other place in Nicaragua.

Leon being the former capital city of Nicaragua is the second largest city in Nicaragua as well as home to the largest Cathedral in Central America. It is also a city filled with history, narrow cobbled streets, battle scars along with vibrant colorful murals.

Tourists can undertake a day trip to Leon to explore some of the interesting sites which may include visiting beaches like Las Penitas or Playa Poneloya, volcano boarding down Cerro Negro together with hiking local volcanoes.

Amazing Beauty and Architecture
 
Exploring within Leon city includes a visit to the Basilica Catedral de la Asuncion one of the largest cathedral in Central America which stands in the center of the city having excellent views from the roof overlooking the city as well as view of the nearby volcanoes.

There are many churches in Leon which have amazing beauty, architecture with a history behind these buildings. Interesting places to explore are Museo Ruben Dario, (Spanish) Museo de Tradiciones v Levendas and Museo de Arte Fundacion Ortiz-Gurdian (Spanish).

Located a few blocks north of the Parque de Los Poetas, near Quetzal Trekkers is El Desayunazo where a typical Nicaraguan breakfast – gallo pint or a western style breakfast can be enjoyed. With its growing burgeoning food scene and a variety of enjoyable meals, Leon is attracting more number of international tourists as well as expats to this amazing city.

UNESCO World Heritage – Ruins of Leon Viejo
 
The ruins of Leon Viejo which dates way back to the 16th century are a short trip from Leon where the site is Nicaragua’s only UNESCO World Heritage listing considered to be the oldest Spanish colonial settlement in the Americas. It is one of the most amazing ruin sites enabling visitors to learn about the country’s colonial past.

Leon is in the close proximity of many outdoor markets, cheap food with decent foodie restaurants where tourist could enjoy and pamper their taste buds with their enjoyable meals. Leon has a warm Mediterranean climate where the summer is warm while the winter temperature is between 1 degree Centigrade and 13 degree Centigrade and the city has a considerable amount of sunshine throughout the year.

Frost is common during the early hours of the morning before dawn during coldest days of winter which normally melts after sunrise. The snowfalls are not rare, around 16 days in a year in the city. The summers can be very hot and dry; with the temperature oscillating from 21 degree Centigrade to 35 degree Centigrade though it is not unusual for the temperature to reach over 35 degree Centigrade during the hottest day of summer in the city.