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Nicaragua Hiking Trails at Rancho Santana

With a variety of natural landscapes and a sense of the undiscovered, Nicaragua offers a great variety of trails and adventure sports to enjoy. From the hilly forests up North in coffee country Matagalpa, Estelí, and Jinotega, to tropical volcanoes, there is no shortage of natural beauty to explore and terrain to cover. The Emerald Coast is famous for its phenomenal waves, but there is so much more to explore beyond our incredible surf breaks. The tropical-dry forest, seaside cliffs, and mountains beckon those hungry for nature and adventure—making it a hiker’s paradise.

What to expect on Rancho Santana's hiking trails?

The Ranch alone is home to over 16 miles (ca. 26 km) of trails, varying in difficulty from shorter, flatter terrains that anyone can enjoy to uphill long-distance hikes. No matter the choice, our trails always manage to make an impression with sightings of natural marvels.

Complimentary Nature Hikes are ideal for those who prefer guidance when exploring our extensive trails. Our experienced guides will share the best natural wonders around The Ranch and adjust the length and difficulty to suit your needs. 

If you are looking for a challenge, the majestic Mt. Mohosa, a short drive from The Ranch, offers scenic views of the Mombacho volcano. Reward yourself at the summit with a delicious picnic with snacks and drinks fresh from our kitchen while relishing the view.

Amazing animals to see while hiking Nicaragua

Like most things in Nicaragua, the beauty lies in the fact that wildlife and flora remain relatively undisturbed. When hiking, you are bound to run into a plethora of animals. Spider and Howler monkeys, deer, iguanas, land turtles, and other animals often make an appearance within our extensive trail system. Perhaps the most colorful and eye-catching of them all is the national bird of Nicaragua, the Guardabarranco, a wonder for visitors who are charmed by its beautiful colors and tail. 

 

Especially common when hiking our trails are the beautiful swarms of butterflies, and guests typically remark on their exotic colors and varieties. 

Nature takes on new life in the dark. Some of our wild residents are nocturnal and can therefore be seen at night. Our guides are happy to lead a Nighttime Nature Hike.

Monkeys in a tree habitat supported by Rancho Santana’s commitment to sustainable travel

Beautiful plants or trees to find while hiking in Nicaragua

Hiking trails are sure to enchant with a spectacle of flowers and trees. The fertile Nicaraguan soil is well-suited to growing tropical flowers and plants. In the lush green forests and on trails, you will find some local favorites, including the sacuanjoches – the national flower of Nicaragua—known as Plumeria Alba. The variety most emblematic is white with a yellow center and can be seen throughout The Ranch, most notably at La Boquita in Playa Rosada

 

Another common tree you will see along hikes in Nicaragua is the African tulip tree, tall with bright red flowers; this tree makes a strong impression. While you explore our trails, keep a look-out for our in-trail arboretum. Many of our most emblematic trees are labeled. Get to know the famous genízaro (monkey pod), ceiba, caoba (mahogany) trees, and more. 

Beyond The Ranch, you are welcome to explore some of the most impressive destinations in Nicaragua. Off-property experiences are tailored to your needs and likes, many guests opt to hike Nicaragua’s famous Mombacho volcano—a must for guests who are fans of adventure. Ometepe Island is also a popular destination, this full-day tour can include a hike up the emblematic Maderas Volcano.