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Mombacho Volcano

With an Aztec name that translates to "Steep Mountain," Mombacho Volcano certainly lives up to its name, with its huge crater reaching a lofty peak of 4,400 feet (1,344 meters). The volcano’s last eruption, more than 3,000 years ago, was responsible for creating the many islands of Lake Nicaragua and today, the now-dormant Mombacho offers spectacular views over the glittering lake and the Isles of Granada below. The summit of Mombacho is reachable by road, but the most rewarding way to explore the volcano is on foot, passing through sprawling coffee plantations, fields of wild orchids and unspoiled cloud forest, dotted with natural hot springs and hissing fumaroles. A number of hiking trails run up to the summit and through the surrounding Mombacho Cloud Forest Reserve, which is home to an impressive 800 plant species and 171 animal and bird species, including quetzal, hummingbirds, howler monkeys and unique indigenous species like the Mombacho butterfly and Mombacho Salamander.

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