Masaya Volcano, Masaya

#5 of 11 in Things to do in Masaya
Masaya is a caldera located in Masaya, Nicaragua, 20 km south of the capital Managua. It is Nicaragua's first and largest national park, and one of 78 protected areas of Nicaragua. The complex volcano is composed of a nested set of calderas and craters, the largest of which is Las Sierras shield volcano and caldera. Within this caldera lies a sub-vent, which is Masaya Volcano sensu stricto. The vent is a shield type composing of basaltic lavas and tephras and includes a summit crater. This hosts Masaya caldera, formed 2,500 years ago by an 8-km³ basaltic ignimbrite eruption. Inside this caldera a new basaltic complex has grown from eruptions mainly on a semi-circular set of vents that include the Masaya and Nindiri cones. The latter host the pit craters of Masaya, Santiago, Nindiri and San Pedro. Observations in the walls of the pit craters indicate that there have been several episodes of cone and pit crater formation.Masaya continually emits large amounts of sulfur dioxide gas (from the active Santiago crater) and volcanologists study this (amongst other signs) to better understand the behavior of the volcano and also evaluate the impact of acid rain and the potential for health problems.
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Masaya Volcano Reviews
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51 reviews
  • Where can you look down the crater of an active volcano and see live lava flows. Here in Masaya volcano and it is perfectly safe to do so. Do go at night. In the day time you only see sulphur fumes. F...  more »
  • A beautiful volcano, with a view of the exceptional crater. What a chance to climb so easily and approach the crater without any problems. The lava is moving, and very red, awesome!
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  • Definitely worth a visit - bring a peg for your nose as the sulphur smell is amazing! The grandiose scale of the volcano mouth itself is something to marvel at and you wont be disappointed. There is ample parking and plenty of other activities nearby including butterfly farms and others.>!
  • Amazing. Completely mind-blowing because legends say this is an entrance to Hell. Men, women and Children were sacrificed here to appease whatever lies below. This place has a very dark and sinister history. Ask the locals and they can confirm everything I've said is truth. Regardless, Enjoy!
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