Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Pueblos Blancos--Nica Style

It's the first of the belated Nicaragua posts! I really loved Nicaragua, so even though I am already living it up in Greece, I had to show it a little blog love (if for no reason other than so that everybody can see there is more to it than the civil war that ended two decades ago!). So here we go: 

One of my first afternoons in Nicaragua we took a little afternoon trip to the Pueblos Blancos (The White Towns) in southern Nicaragua. It struck me as strange that in southern Spain around the city of Granada there are clusters of white villages known as the Pueblos Blancos, and then here in Nicaragua, around their city of Granada, there were the same type of towns. Who knew?
After an helado (ice cream) we stopped in the white church in San Marcos. Our fearless leader Bergman leads the way!

The church holds one of only two "black Jesuses" in Nicaragua

Bell tower: we were all very tempted to pull that string...

Roof view

Street view of San Marcos with volcanoes in the distance

Another shot of the church

We visited a little farm that had every kind of medicinal plant you could think of. They also had all kinds of regular things growing--but things that most of us only knew in their processed state. For example, here Bergman is taking a machete to a cacao plant!

There are the beans--the cacao is inside them. You can suck on them, and they are sweet, but if you bite in, it's bitter. Very interesting. 

We also stopped in Masatepe, Nicaragua's furniture making capital, to watch them weave banana leaves into furniture

We then passed through Niquinohomo which is the birthplace of Augusto Sandino

Ah, and finally we stopped in Catarina to take in the view at the Mirador. The view was so beautiful that it was jarring (unfortunately my pictures can't do it justice!). From there you could see Laguno de Apoyo (a crater lake), Granada in the distance, Lake Nicaragua and the slopes of the volcano Mombacho (see next picture). 

The view was fantastic, the musicians were good, the company was lively and the drinks were cold. An all around good afternoon and beautiful part of the country. 

{...I'm not going to lie...I kind of miss Nicaragua}

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